STONE MOUNTAIN, Georgia – The No. 7-ranked California women’s tennis team suffered a major loss, when they fell in the NCAA Round of 16 to the No. 11-ranked Arizona State Sun Devils, 4-2, in Stone Mountain, Georgia. The Bears met up with the Sun Devils for the third time this year, the first two coming in the regular season.
Though Cal defeated Arizona State on Mar. 9, the Sun Devils would take the next two, defeating the Bears, in Tempe, before knocking Cal out of the NCAA tournament. The Sun Devils opened the competition by sweeping the doubles point, the first time doing so in their three meetings this year.
ASU would carry that momentum into singles, as they would grab three singles points for the victory at the No. 1, 3 and 6 spots. ASU’s Adria Engel, who was named ITA Player of the Month for April downed senior Anita Kurimay at the No. 1 court in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3. ASU’s other two wins would come in straight sets as well, as Raquel Kops-Jones lost, 6-2, 7-6, while Sekita Grant lost, 6-3, 7-5.
Cal’s two points in singles came with wins from Christina Fusano and Jieun Jacobs at the No. 2 and 4 courts. Jacobs would tally a straight set victory over Faye DeVera, 6-2, 6-3, while Fusano would easily handle Karen Palme, 6-3, 6-3. In the three meetings this year between Cal and ASU, Fusano would be the only player on the Cal team to go undefeated in singles against her opponents.
Individual singles and doubles competition begins on Monday, May 21, as the Bears will enter Kops-Jones, Fusano and Kurimay in singles. In doubles, Kurimay and Kops-Jones will team for a chance at Cal’s fourth straight NCAA doubles championship.