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ITA Kickoff Weekend Tourneys Highlight Schedule


Big West Tennis Release No. 3

The Cal Poly men take on No. 4 California and the UC Santa Barbara joust with No. 13 Texas Tech at respective ITA Kickoff Weekend tennis tournaments this week.


Kickoff Weekend Highlights This Week’s Schedule
This week’s tennis schedule features two squads competing in the ITA Kickoff Weekend four-team tournaments.  The Cal Poly men are in Berkeley to take on No. 4 California in the opening match, and either Tulane or Pepperdine in the consolation or championship.  The Mustangs are coming off a dominant 6-1 victory at Boise State in their season opener.

The UC Santa Barbara women also face a highly ranked opponent.  The Gauchos head to Lubbock, Texas for a date with host and No. 13-ranked Texas Tech, followed by a matchup with either South Carolina or Arizona State.  The Gauchos hung tough with then-No. 18 USC in their season opener.

Defending women’s regular season champion Long Beach State opens its dual season at Loyola Marymount.  The Beach has won at least 18 contests in nine consecutive seasons under head coach Jenny Hilt-Costello, which includes three 20-win campaigns.  The first women’s tennis conference match is also on tap, as CSUN travels to UC Riverside.

Ranked Opponents Go Timber 
Big West players have posted some impressive individual victories to start the 2017 season.  A total of five nationally ranked opponents – four singles and one doubles – were toppled last week alone.  On the women’s side, Cindy Nguyen of Hawai‘i downed No. 31 Arianne Hartono of Ole Miss.  UC Santa Barbara junior Palina Dubavets knocked off No. 56 Zoe Katz of USC, and Cal State Fullerton senior Alexis Valenzuela clawed her way to a win over Nevada’s No. 66 Claudia Herrero.  The UCSB tandem of Dubavets and Stefani Stojic, ranked as high as 10th in the country last year, earned a solid win against the No. 18-ranked doubles team of Katz and Gabby Smith.  UC Irvine senior Sebastian Heim returned to form after battling injuries and illness, coming up with an outstanding win over No. 28 Logan Smith of USC. 

Player School Opponent, School Nat’l Rank
Alexis Valenzuela Cal State Fullerton Claudia Herrero, Nevada No. 66
Sebastian Heim UC Irvine Logan Smith, USC No. 28
Palina Dubavets UC Santa Barbara Zoe Katz, USC No. 56
Cindy Nguyen Hawai‘i Arianne Hartono, Ole Miss No. 31

Tandem School Opponent, School Nat’l Rank
Dubavets/Stojic   UC Santa Barbara Smith/Katz, USC            No. 18

Indian Wells Hosts Big West Tournament For 14th Straight Year
Indian Wells Tennis Garden is hosting the Big West Men’s and Women’s Tennis Championship for the 14th consecutive year.  One of the premier facilities in the United States, also a host of the BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells will host all six men’s and nine women’s teams from April 27-30.