The Cal Poly women’s tennis team took their first two home games this season with two consecutive wins against the University of Nevada and the University of San Francisco. The Mustangs now sit at 2-1 on the season.
Cal Poly vs. Denver
The Mustangs won a back-and-forth match against the University of Nevada 4-3 Feb 2. at the Mustang Tennis Complex.
Cal Poly got off to a 1-0 lead by securing a crucial doubles point.
After senior Molly Reed and sophomore Seriana Saltzen lost a close set 7-5, freshman MacKenzie Worsnop and senior Abigail Bacharach won their set 7-6 after a long tiebreaker. During their tiebreaker, the teams were tied multiple times 8-8, 9-9 and 11-11 before Cal Poly won the set on a volley placed perfectly in the right alley.
The win left it all up to the third doubles position, which was occupied by junior Caroline Williams and freshman Grace Olyphant for the Mustangs and freshman Lili Fekete and freshman Maria Tatarnikova for Nevada.
This set also went to a tiebreaker and resulted in another 7-6 win for the Mustangs. The Mustangs clinched the set and doubles point after Nevada hit a lob that landed out of bounds.
“In doubles, we had a specific focus,” head coach Katharina Winterhalter said. “It worked for us last weekend and it worked for us today.”
During singles play, Saltzen and Reed had a shot to redeem themselves.
Saltzen won both her sets in tiebreakers, including the match-clinching fourth point. Saltzen said she took it one point at a time during her tiebreakers.
“Just one more point and you hope that she messes up before you do,” Saltzen said.
Reed cruised through her opponent only losing one game in two sets.
“Yeah, if I have the momentum I need to keep,” Reed said. “I am a big believer in it.”
Cal Poly vs. University of San Francisco
The Cal Poly women’s tennis team continued their hot start to the season by defeating University of San Francisco 5-2 Feb. 4 at Mustang Complex Center.
The Mustangs (2-1) clinched the win against the Dons (1-2) after Williams defeated her opponent, Shannon Dos Santos, 6-2, 6-4 in the singles competition.
Williams and freshman Grace Oliphant started the morning winning the first of the doubles matches. However, after a Dons’ pair got a win, it came down to Bacharach and Worsnop.
Bacharach and Worsnop led most of the match, but a run by freshman Alexa Meyer and sophomore Anna Sokiran took the match to a 13th set. With both teams spectating, Worsnop and Bacharach took the last set and clinched the point for the Mustangs.
After gaining a one-point lead in the doubles matches, four Mustangs found success in singles play. Oliphant defeated junior Margarita Treyes 6-3, 6-1 while sophomore Claire Bouquet beat Meyer 6-1, 6-2. This was Bouquet’s first official match back after an injury sidelined her for nearly a year.
Saltzen also came back from a one-set deficit and defeated Sokiran 2-6,6-4,6-0.
“They stayed tough again, they just played it one point at a time,” Winterhalter said. “San Francisco is a tough team, they did not go away so we really had to play well.”
After an exciting start to the season, the Mustangs are looking to continue turning their hard work into wins.
“This team has had to battle for a long time and they’re coming out on top and they’ve earned it so this is just going to give them more confidence,” Winterhalter said.
The Mustangs will take on Fresno State Saturday at 10 a.m. for the first of a four-match road trip.