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Women's tennis winning streak ends with pair of losses

By Matthew Bassin
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday, February 14, 2005
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The No. 41 Arizona women's tennis team suffered back-to-back losses after starting the season 5-0 with a pair of defeats over the weekend.

Saturday the Wildcats (5-2) were in New Orleans to take on the No. 15 Tulane Green Wave.

Arizona's No. 17 seniors Maja Mlakar and Dianne Hollands did their part taking care of Tulane's No. 49 Darya and Maria Ivanov, 8-4. However the Green Wave's other doubles teams washed over the Wildcats to give Arizona its first loss of the doubles point this season.

Senior Stephanie Balzert and junior Kelly Perry were defeated by Tulane's Julie Smekodub and Jenny Kuehn, 5-8, while sophomore Jessie Rochefort and freshman Camelia Todorova lost to Dorottya Magas and Nancy Kockott, 1-8.

In singles play, No. 63 Mlakar easily defeated Tulane's No. 112 Maria Ivanov 6-2, 6-4. No. 23 Hollands also took care of Tulane's No. 81 Kuehn 7-5, 6-2.

The rest of the Wildcats were unable to help their leaders in the comeback.

Balzert was defeated by Smekodub 4-6, 5-7, while Perry fought hard but ultimately lost to No. 51 Kockott 6-7 (3-7), 2-6.

Sophomore Kasia Jakowlew lost to No. 64 Darya Ivanov 2-6, 2-6 and Todorova was beaten by No. 106 Magas 3-6, 1-6.

Arizona lost the match 2-5.

Friday the Wildcats were defeated in a close match with the South Alabama Jaguars, 3-4.

The Jaguars (5-0) rallied back to defeat Arizona after being swept in the doubles point.

Mlakar and Hollands beat South Alabama's Katarina Palenikova and Maria Zivcicova 8-4, while Balzert and Perry defeated the Jaguars' Andrea Kurekova and Klara Jarova 9-8. Todorova and Rochefort completed the sweep for the Wildcats, defeating Dijana Stanic and Dominika Nemcovicova 9-8.

Once again Arizona's one-two punch of Mlakar and Hollands were as reliable as rain during a monsoon season.

Mlakar defeated Kurekova 6-3, 6-4, while Hollands defeated Zivcicova 6-2, 1-6, 6-3.

But that is where the wins stopped for the Wildcats and the losses began.

Blazert was defeated by South Alabama's Ana Rupic 0-6, 7-5, 2-6 and Perry lost to Palenikova 2-6, 3-6, to give the Jaguars their first two points of the match.

Jakowlew lost to Nemcovicova 6-7, 2-6, which evened up the match at 3-3. However it was soon followed with a defeat of Arizona's Todorova by South Alabama's Stanic 2-6, 3-6, giving the Jaguar's a 4-3 victory over Arizona.

Arizona will have to quickly forget about this past weekend and focus on the upcoming weekend, as they begin the Pacific 10 Conference schedule Friday in Los Angeles, facing No. 12 Southern California and No. 11 UCLA.

The No. 33 Arizona men's tennis team had a rough weekend as well. They had to deal with the rainy weather and the No. 7 Stanford Cardinal (6-0).

The Cardinal and Wildcats' match was delayed two days due to rain before Stanford swept Arizona 7-0 yesterday.

Arizona's No. 18 senior Colin O'Grady and junior Roger Matalonga were defeated by Stanford's No. 2 Same Warburg and KC Corkery 5-8 to begin the sweep.

The Cardinal's Phil Sheng and Eric McKean defeat Arizona's junior Daniel Andrus and freshman Bruno Alcala 8-5, and Arizona's senior Paul Warkentin and freshman Claudio Christen lost to Stanford's Jon Wong and James Wan 1-8.

In singles play, No. 58 Matalonga lost to Stanford's No. 4 Warburg 3-6, 2-6, while O'Grady played a close match with No. 15 Corkery, but lost 6-4, 3-6, 3-6.

Arizona's Warkentin was defeated by Stanford's Sheng, 4-6, 4-6 and Andrus lost to Stanford's Wan 4-6, 2-6.

Alcala was defeated by Stanford's Philip Kao 3-6, 1-6, and Jason Labrosse was beaten by Stanford's McKean 4-6, 3-6.

Arizona (5-3) played in a different style of match against the No. 26 California (3-1) to avoid the incoming rain. The men skipped the double's matches and went straight to single's play Saturday.

Matalonga lost to California's No. 21 Conor Niland 2-6, 4-6 on court one to give Cal the early lead. O'Grady defeated Cal's Daniel Sebescen 6-2, 6-4, to square the match at one.

Andrus lost to Cal's Tyler Brown 4-6, 2-6, while Arizona's Labrosse defeated Cal's Dean Wallace 6-3, 3-6, 6-1, to keep the match tied at 2-2.

Cal took a 3-2 lead when Arizona's Alcala lost to Cal's Ken Nakahara 2-6, 4-6.

With Arizona needing one more win for a tie, it was all up to Paul Warkentin. Warkentin took the first set 6-4 against Cal's Patrick Briaud, then lost the second set 3-6. Warkentin, playing in front of a hostile crowd, took Briaud to the edge of defeat before losing the final 6-7, to give Cal a 4-2 victory.

Arizona assistant coach Tad Berkowitz said he was proud of his team's effort.

"The guys fought hard," said Berkowitz. "They gave it their all. It's tough to win on the road in the Pac-10. Colin and Jason played great. They were real impressive today."

Arizona continues with its road schedule Friday and Saturday, playing the No. 65 New Mexico Lobos and No. 24 Pepperdine Waves at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif.

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