No. 1 Stanford Puts Away No. 4 UCLA, 5-2
STANFORD, Calif.- In a key early-season battle between two of the nation's top teams, No. 1 Stanford jumped out to an early lead and held on for a 5-2 victory over No. 4 UCLA on Saturday afternoon at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium.
Saturday's contest does not factor into the conference standings, as the Mar. 25 rematch in Los Angeles is the designated Pac-10 counting match. That being said, Saturday's match was still a significant one for both squads.
Stanford (4-0, 0-0 Pac-10) won its fourth straight match to open the year in front of a large, sun-drenched crowd, effectively sending a message to UCLA (4-2, 0-0 Pac-10) in the process, as both clubs have national championship aspirations.
The win also extended Stanford's NCAA-record home winning streak to an unthinkable 168 consecutive matches (136 regular season, 32 NCAA Tournament)- a streak that spans nearly 12 seasons and is recognized as the longest active home winning streak among all sports in Division I athletics. The Cardinal has not lost at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium since a 5-4 setback against No. 4 California back on Feb. 27, 1999.
The tone was established in doubles. With a split on courts one and two, Stanford claimed a 1-0 lead when Veronica Li and Carolyn McVeigh topped Pamela Montez and Carling Seguso 8-5 at the No. 3 spot.
Stanford was cruising early once singles started. Playing in her first dual match of the year after battling injury, Mallory Burdette looked anything but rusty in a 6-0, 6-1 victory over Courtney Dolehide at the No. 4 spot.
Freshman Nicole Gibbs made it 3-0 when she defeated Noelle Hickey 6-3, 6-1 on court three. Gibbs, along with fellow rookie Kristie Ahn at the No. 2 spot, continue to excel at the top of the lineup early in the year. Ahn also won her match at No. 5 in straight sets.
Hilary Barte polished off the match with a 6-4, 6-1 triumph over McCall Jones at the No. 1 spot, clinching the win.
Stanford is back in action on Thursday, Feb. 10, against SMU at 1:30 p.m.
No. 1 Stanford 5, No. 4 UCLA 2
1) No. 3 Barte/Burdette (STAN) d. No. 57 Dolehide/Remynse (UCLA) 8-4
2) Hickey/Jones (UCLA) d. Ahn/Gibbs (STAN) 8-6
3) Li/Carolyn McVeigh (STAN) d. Montez/Seguso (UCLA) 8-5
Order of Finish: 1, 2, 3
1) No. 5 Hilary Barte (STAN) d. McCall Jones (UCLA) 6-4, 6-1
2) No. 23 Kristie Ahn (STAN) d. Andrea Remynse (UCLA) 6-4, 6-3
3) No. 80 Nicole Gibbs (STAN) d. No. 57 Noelle Hickey (UCLA) 6-3, 6-1
4) No. 31 Mallory Burdette (STAN) d. No. 36 Courtney Dolehide (UCLA) 6-0, 6-1
5) Pamela Montez (UCLA) d. No. 47 Stacey Tan (STAN) 6-7 (5), 6-2, 1-0 (10)
6) Maya Johansson (UCLA) d. Veronica Li (STAN) 6-4, 6-4
Order of Finish: 4, 3, 1, 2, 6, 5