SANTA BARBARA, Calif.—After an entire week without matches, the UC Santa Barbara women's tennis team (5-13, 2-2) will take the court again for a pair of Big West conference matches. Santa Barbara is slated for a showdown on Friday, Apr. 4 at 1 p.m. against Big West leaders and nationally ranked No. 60 Long Beach State (13-2, 4-0). The Gauchos will then face off against UC Riverside (0-14, 0-3) on Saturday, Apr. 5 at noon.
The Gauchos are coming off a busy spring break as the team hosted three matches within a five day stretch. Despite the jam packed schedule, UCSB displayed strong play as the team won two out of the three contests. UCSB pulled off a 4-3 upset over then ranked No. 53 Kansas State but then fell to Hawaii in a tight 4-3 decision. The Gauchos rounded out the week with a decisive 5-2 win over Sacramento State.
Junior, Paola Cos is now riding a three match win streak as she is continuing to shine for the team. Working primarily on courts 4, 5 or 6, the junior is providing consistent play for the Gauchos.
Freshman, Jaimee Gilbertson is providing more versatility and flexibility in Coach Thibodeau's lineup as the Australia native is having a sensational season thus far. Despite her eight match win streak being snapped, Gilbertson came back with a convincing win during the team's duel against Sacramento State. Undefeated so far on courts No. 5 and 6, Gilbertson shuffled around the lineup as the freshman worked on courts 3 and 4 last week against Kansas State, Hawaii and Sacramento State.
Coming off strong performances, the Gauchos will face a tough test against a 49ers team that is riding a four match win streak. As the season is winding down, every match holds increasing importance as the team is aiming towards capturing the Big West title.