OJAI, Calif. - Fresh off a win over UC Santa Barbara, seventh-ranked California seeks conference singles and doubles titles in the Pac-12 Championships starting Thursday, April 25, at the Ojai Valley Athletic Club and Libbey Park. The conference event ends with the finals on Sunday, April 28, with the Pac-12 Networks airing the singles championship live at 10 a.m. and showing the doubles final delayed at 8 p.m. on Sunday.
The 32-player singles draw consists of three players from each of the top 10 schools that sponsor women's tennis and two players from the 11th-place team, based on the regular-season standings. The 16-team women's doubles draw will have one doubles team from each of the 11 schools and five additional teams selected by the draw committee.
Fans can find information including results and draws at the USTA's Pac-12 Championships website.
Three Bears are among the eight seeded players in singles: Sophomore Zsofi Susanyi is the top seed, junior Anett Schutting is the No. 2 seed and freshman Klara Fabikova is the seventh seed. Susanyi will play Washington State's Andjela Kankaras at 11 a.m., Schutting will play Oregon's Patricia Skowronski at 12:30 p.m. and Fabikova will also play at 12:30 p.m. against Arizona State's Leighann Sahagun on Thursday, with all three matches taking place at the Ojai Valley Athletic Club.
In doubles - which begin play on Friday - Cal has one of the four seeded teams, with the duo of freshman Lynn Chi and Schutting earning the third seed. The Bears will have three doubles teams playing at Pac-12s: Chui and Schutting take on ASU's Sahagun/Desirae Krawczyk at 9 a.m. and Susanyi/Fabikova plays Colorado's Erin Sanders/Julyette Steur at 9 a.m. the athletic club, while the team of senior Tayler Davis and junior Kelly Chui battle Arizona's Akilah James/Kim Stubbe at 10 a.m. at the athletic club on Friday.
Cal also has three players seeded in the singles invitational field; seven Bears will play in that draw. Here is the schedule of the Bears' first matches on Thursday, all of which will take place at the Ojai Valley Athletic Club:
8 a.m. - junior Alice Duranteau vs. Washington's Natali Coronel (Round of 64); sophomore Laura Posylkin vs. Colorado's Ashley Tiefel (Round of 64)
11 a.m. - junior Kelly Chui (first-round bye) vs. UCLA's Skylar Morton (Round of 32)
2 p.m. - eighth-seeded senior Annie Goransson (first-round bye) vs. Laura Oldham (Arizona)/Dajana Ognjenovic (Washington State) winner (Round of 32); fourth-seeded senior Tayler Davis (first-round bye) vs. Holly Fleming (UCLA)/Joanna Smith (ASU) winner (Round of 32)
3:30 p.m. - top-seeded freshman Lynn Chi (first-round bye) vs. Natalie Dillon (Stanford)/Carla Menzi (Colorado) winner (Round of 32); sophomore Cecilia Estlander (first-round bye) vs. Riko Shimizu (UW)/Mazy Watrous (Colorado) winner (Round of 32)
Cal has two pairs playing in the doubles invitational field; here is the Bears' schedule on Friday, the first day of that draw, with matches taking place at the Ojai Valley Athletic Club:
10 a.m. - fourth-seeded Estlander/Goransson vs. Washington State's Ognjenovic/Charlotte Koning (Round of 16)
3 p.m. - Duranteau/Posylkin vs. Stanford's Amelia Herring/Lindsey Kostas
Cal has produced two singles champions since the tournament's inception in 1987. Raquel Kops-Jones won the title in 2004 and Zsuzsanna Fodor claimed the crown in 2006.
On the doubles side, the Bears have claimed seven titles, with Mari Andersson and Jana Juricova winning the most recent crown in 2011. Alissa Finerman and Tifany Silveria won the doubles championships in 1988. Keirsten Alley and Pam Nelson claimed back-to-back crowns in 1993 and 1994, before current head coach Amanda Augustus teamed with Claire Curran to bring home the 1997 championship. Christina Fusano and Kops-Jones won the 2002 and 2003 titles. Additionally, current senior Tayler Davis and sophomore Laura Posylkin won the Pac-12 doubles invitational crown in 2012 (see below).
The Pac-12 Women's Tennis Championships will be the featured event - along with the Pac-12 Men's Tennis Championships - at the 113th annual Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament at the Ojai Valley Tennis Club, which attracts 1,600 of the best college, junior, and open players from the Western states. The annual event, started by William Thacher in 1896, has always been played at the same site and interrupted only five times. Players of the caliber of Pete Sampras, Lindsay Davenport, Michael Chang, Rick Leach, Tracy Austin, Billy Jean King, Arthur Ashe, Jimmy Connors, and the Bryan twins have all played in the historic tournament.
Here are ticket prices for the tournament:
Student/Senior (over 60): $20
Child (under 18): $15
General Admission: $20
Student/Senior (over 60): $10
Child (under 18): $10
For more information - including directions to the Ojai Valley Athletic Club and Libbey Park - please visit the Ojai tournament website.
Last Year at the Pac-12 Championships
Cal wrapped up play at the Pac-12 Championships on April 29, 2012, at the Libbey Park courts. One day prior, No. 96-ranked sophomore Anett Schutting became the first Golden Bear to advance to the conference singles title match since Susie Babos in 2007. Her run to the title was cut short by the tournament's top seed in Stanford's No. 3-ranked sophomore Nicole Gibbs who claimed a 6-0, 6-2 win in the championship bout.
The Bears fared better in the doubles invitational final, in which junior Tayler Davis and freshman Laura Posylkin earned a 9-7 victory over Arizona's tandem of Hailey Johnson and Sarah Landsman to take home the invitational title. The Bear duo is the first to capture the invitational crown since Bojana Bobusic and Claire Ilcinkas won it in 2007. Playing in the main draw, USC's Kaitlyn Christian and Sabrina Santamaria won the 2012 Pac-12 doubles championship.
Scouting the 2013 Golden Bears
• The Bears have won six consecutive dual matches
• Cal boasts four ranked singles players: No. 5/sophomore Zsofi Susanyi, No. 8/junior Anett Schutting, No. 62/freshman Klara Fabikova and No. 66/freshman Lynn Chi
• The Bears have two ranked doubles teams: No. 29 Chi/Schutting and No. 45 Fabikova/Susanyi
• Cal is one of 14 schools with both its men's and women's tennis teams ranked in the ITA poll; the Cal men are ranked 18th this week
• Schutting earned the Pac-12 Player of the Week honor on March 26 for her play in wins over Colorado and Utah
• Former NCAA doubles champion Amanda Augustus (Cal '99) is in her sixth year as head coach of her alma mater
Last Time: No. 7 Cal Upends UCSB, 6-2
Seventh-ranked Cal closed the regular season with a 6-1 romp over UC Santa Barbara on April 23 at the Roberton Gym Courts in Santa Barbara, Calif. The Golden Bears - who won the doubles point and five of six singles matches - improved their record to 16-5 after the nonconference dual match, while the Gauchos fell to 14-8.
Eight-ranked Anett Schutting clinched the overall victory with her 6-0, 6-2, victory over UCSB's April Scatliffe in court-one singles.
In doubles, Cal opened the day with the duo of junior Alice Duranteau and sophomore Laura Posylkin beating Stacy Yam/Paola Cos, 8-3, on court three. The Bear pair of senior Tayler Davis and junior Kelly Chui wrapped up the doubles point with an 8-2 victory over Priscila Garcia/Erica Cano on court two. Also, Cal's 45th-ranked team of sophomore Zsofi Susanyi and freshman Klara Fabikova topped Scatliffe/Kiersten Meehan, 8-2, on court one.
Davis also met Garcia in singles, beating the Gaucho, 6-0, 6-2, on court four. Cal senior Annie Goransson followed with a victory on court five, winning the first set, 6-3, and then taking the match when Yam retired. Schutting then notched her court-one win over Scatliffe to claim the match for Cal with a score of 4-0 at that point.
Fabikova, ranked 62nd in singles, bageled Meehan in the first set, 6-0, before claiming the match with a 6-3 second set. Her doubles partner, the fifth-ranked Susanyi, next recorded a 6-3, 6-1, win over Cos. The Gauchos claimed their lone point when Duranteau fell to Cano, 6-3, 0-6, 1-0(10-8), on court six to make the final score 6-1.
Cal will likely earn selection into the NCAA Championships. NCAAs open with the first and second rounds from May 10-12 at sites TBA.