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No. 6 UCLA Women's Tennis Opens Pac-10 Conference Action In Arizona
Courtesy: UCLA Athletics  
Release:  01/25/2000

Jan. 25, 2000

#6 UCLA vs. #31 Arizona
Fri., Jan. 28 @ Tucson, AZ - 1:30 p.m.

#6 UCLA vs. #12 ASU
Sat., January 29 @ Tempe, AZ - Noon

This Week . . .
UCLA opens up Pac-10 Conference action this Friday at No. 31 Arizona, followed by a matchup with No. 12 Arizona State on Saturday. Arizona heads into the week 3-0 after posting wins over No. 27 New Mexico (7-2), San Diego (7-2) and Kansas State (8-1). Arizona State, which will face No. 10 USC on Friday, brings a 1-0 record into the week after beating No. 27 New Mexico 9-0 on Jan. 23 in Tempe.

Most Recent . . .
The No. 6 ranked UCLA women's tennis team opened up the dual-match season last week, registering two home wins over No. 23 Fresno State and Cal State Northridge. On Wednesday, UCLA downed Fresno State 7-1 after winning five of six singles matches, including the doubles point. Using the best-of-seven men's format on Friday, the Bruins beat Cal State Northridge 6-1.

UCLA in the ITA Rankings . . .
As a team, UCLA debuted at No. 6 in the Fall ITA rankings. In the preseason, UCLA had five players ranked among the top-100 collegians, headlined by No. 9 Annica Cooper and No. 14 Cristina Popescu. However, in the latest Fall rankings, only No. 46 Sara Walker and No. 85 Annica Cooper are ranked in singles. In doubles, the Bruin tandem of Amanda Basica and Cooper entered the season ranked No. 2 in the nation and have since fallen out. Currently, Petya Marinova and Sara Walker are UCLA's highest ranked team at No. 19 and are followed by Abigail Spears and Elizabeth Schmidt at No. 34.

Immediate Impact . . .
In only her first season of collegiate action, UCLA freshman Sara Walker is quickly proving she is one of the top players in the nation. Currently ranked No. 46, Walker won both the singles and doubles titles at the prestigious National Collegiate Tennis Classic two weeks ago. En route to the championship, she defeated teammate Amanda Basica 6-1, 6-2 in the semifinals and No. 4 ranked Jewel Peterson of USC 7-5, 6-0 in the final. In addition, she won both of her matches in straight sets against Fresno State and Cal State Northridge and even debuted at the No. 1 position for the Bruins in the season opener against FSU. Her 16-4 overall singles record is currently the best on the team.

Spears Exemplifies Sportsmanship . . .
On Feb. 1, UCLA freshman Abigail Spears will be awarded the highest honor given to a junior tennis player in Southern California when she receives the Evelyn Houseman Sportsmanship Award for 1999. Spears, ranked No. 9 in the nation in girl's 18s singles last season, earned the award for her exemplary conduct while participating in various events sanctioned by the Southern California Tennis Association and the United States Tennis Association.

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