SANTA BARBARA, Calif.- In her final match at UCSB, Stephanie Yamada clinched the 4-0 sweep of Cal Poly and sent the UC Santa Barbara Women's Tennis team into the Big West Tournament with a first place crown and four straight conference wins.
The Gauchos follow their captain into battle and finish the season with 4 straight and a first place crown! @stephyamada96 clinches on senior day and @alldaykelt finds out what it takes to do the same at the Big West Tournament next week! @UCSBWTennis @BigWestTennis pic.twitter.com/kSXmNZZpYz— KCSB Sports Radio (@KCSBSports) April 21, 2019
"Steph has had an incredible career here at UCSB," said Head Coach Simon Thibodeau. "Gaucho fans tell me every day how much they love watching her play, and her leadership is irreplaceable. We want to make a run in the tournament to keep her here as long as possible."
Yamada, Amit Lev Ari, and the rest of the Gauchos were electric as UCSB rolled over the Mustangs and improved to 13-7 in dual matches including a near perfect 7-1 record against conference opponents.
Starting off hot, Lev Ari teamed up with Elizaveta Volodko to blank Susanne Boyden and Grace Olyphant with a 6-0 rout from the second court which gave the Gauchos some confidence moving forward.
With the doubles point under her belt, Lev Ari swung the momentum to singles with a 6-3, 6-0 finish to end Emily Louie-Meadors regular season from the first spot in the Gaucho lineup.
The win for Lev Ari marked her fourth in a row which added to an already astonishing junior campaign. During her third season as a Gaucho, Lev Ari led the team with a 20-7 overall singles record while going 14-4 in dual matches.
In the four-hole, Paterova won her first singles match of the year after sitting out for three months due to a lingering knee injury. The junior looked healthy as ever in her 6-2, 6-1 smother of Caroline Williams.
No stranger to wins, Yamada put away the match with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph of her own to deliver the clincher for the Gauchos from court five.
For the second consecutive year, UC Santa Barbara Women's Tennis heads into the Big West Tournament as the No. 1 seed and looks to pick up its third tournament win in the last four years.
UCSB will face the winner of UC Irvine and UC Riverside as the Gauchos kick off their conference tournament run on Friday, April 26, at 8:30 a.m. at Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, Calif.
Tennis Match Results:
Cal Poly vs UC Santa Barbara
Apr 20, 2019 at
UC Santa Barbara 4, Cal Poly 0
1. Amit Lev-Ari (UCSB) def. Emily Louie-Meadors (CP) 6-3, 6-0
2. Elizaveta Volodko (UCSB) vs. Susanne Boyden (CP) 4-6, 4-1, unfinished
3. Tiffany Lagarde (UCSB) vs. MacKenzie Worsnop (CP) 6-4, 0-4, unfinished
4. Dominika Paterova (UCSB) def. Caroline Williams (CP) 6-2, 6-1
5. Stephanie Yamada (UCSB) def. Grace Olyphant (CP) 6-2, 6-1
6. Juliana Valero (UCSB) vs. Emily Ackerman (CP) 6-4, 3-3, unfinished
2. Amit Lev-Ari/Elizaveta Volodko (UCSB) def. Susanne Boyden/Grace Olyphant (CP) 6-0
Cal Poly 7-11
UC Santa Barbara 13-7
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3); Singles (1,4,5)