March 19, 2013
No. 41 Long Beach State will host two final non-conference foes this week as part of a six-match homestand. The 49ers will play No. 58 Iowa on Wednesday and Wyoming on Friday with both matches starting at 2 p.m. at the Rhodes Tennis Center.
LBSU took down its second-straight ranked opponent and moved to a perfect 7-0 at home by defeating No. 71 Louisville, 5-2 on Thursday.
The Cardinals picked up the first point of the day by winning doubles matches at the No. 1 and 3 spots. Klaudia Malenovska and Sarah Cantlay won their third straight doubles match to avoid the Louisville sweep.
In singles, Karolina Rozenberg tied the match up at 1-all with her straight-set victory at the No. 4 spot. Anne-Sophie Willems then put LBSU up 2-1 with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Rebecca Bodine. However, Louisville would not go away, tying the match up again as Manuela Velasquez snapped Sarah Cantlay's seven-match winning streak at the No. 3 spot.
Anna Jeczmionka then broke the tie nearly 75 minutes later with a three-set victory over Mandy Brown and Ebba Unden clinched the LBSU victory with her win at No. 1 over Julia Fellerhoff. Klaudia Malenovska then won the final point of the day with a three-set comeback over Rebecca Shine.
The 49ers will host the Iowa Hawkeyes in a non-conference match on Thursday as part of a six-match homestand. LBSU leads 2-0 in the all-time series against Iowa, with the lone meeting between the two teams under Coach Hilt-Costello coming in 2007 where the 49ers won 4-3. The Hawkeyes, who are 7-5 on the season, travel to California for three matches. Iowa took on Dartmouth on Monday, winning 5-2 before traveling to LBSU on Wednesday. The Hawkeyes will finish out their roadtrip on Thursday at Cal State Northridge. Iowa debuted at No. 58 in last week's ITA Tennis rankings after a 5-2 upset of No. 37 Illinois at home on March 10, it was the first Hawkeye victory over a ranked opponent this season.
Long Beach State will look to avenge last year's loss to Wyoming as the 49ers host the previously Cowgirls on Friday. LBSU and Wyoming are tied 1-1 in the all-time series, with the 49ers winning the first meeting 7-2 in 2000 and the Cowgirls taking last year's meeting 4-3. Wyoming is 6-5 overall and was ranked 70th in last week's ITA Tennis rankings, but is not unranked. The Cowgirls will play three matches during their road trip west, first taking on Cal State Fullerton on Thursday before traveling to LBSU and then finishing up at UC Irvine on Sunday.
Protecting Home Court:
The 49ers own a perfect 7-0 record when playing at home. LBSU has defeated four ranked opponents on its home courts, including No. 46 LSU, No. 65 Hawai'i, No. 45 Boston College and No. 71 Louisville. Historically, the 49ers have a 47-12 record when playing at the Rhodes Tennis Center, which opened in the fall of 2008. Long Beach State last lost at home on March 20, 2012 against No. 25 Nebraska.
Against Ranked Opponents:
LBSU is 4-2 against ranked opponents this season. The 49ers defeated No. 46 LSU, 5-2 (Feb. 9) and No. 65 Hawai'i, 4-3 (Feb. 16) at home before losing 6-1 at No. 75 North Carolina State (Feb. 24) and 4-3 at No. 30 UC Irvine (March 2). LBSU then bounced back to defeat No. 45 Boston College, 5-2 (March 8) and No. 71 Louisville 5-2 (March 14). The 49ers also posted a 6-1 win over UC Santa Barbara on Feb. 10, who wasn't ranked at the time, but is now up to No. 67 in the ITA Tennis rankings.
In the Polls:
The 49ers have been ranked every week this season and came in at No. 41 this week. LBSU began the season off at No. 39 and remained there for four weeks before dropping down to No. 46. Recent victories over ranked opponents had helped the 49ers steadily climb back up into the 30's, but this week LBSU dropped four spots despite earning another ranked win. During Hilt-Costello's tenure at head coach, Long Beach State has been nationally ranked each year since the 2000-01 season. LBSU reached a top ranking in 2006, claiming the No. 18 spot early on before ending the season at No. 26.
Cantlay Continues to Climb Up Record Books:
Senior Sarah Cantlay has continued to make her mark on LBSU tennis history as she earned another win this past week with a doubles victory with partner Klaudia Malenovska over Louisville's Rebecca Bodine and Stefanie Villajuan. Currently sitting at seventh in all-time individual doubles wins, the Sevenoaks, England native is just two victories away from moving into a tie at No. 6 with Hannah Grady.
Unden's Success at No. 1:
Ebba Unden has continued her impressive play in her first season with Beach Tennis as she has now moved in to the No. 1 spot in both singles and doubles. Since the move, Unden is 2-1 in singles play and clinched the LBSU win last week over No. 71 Louisville with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 victory. Partnering with Karolina Rozenberg for doubles play, the duo have compiled an impressive 11-2 duel-match record.
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