The UC Davis women’s tennis team has had a rough start to its season thus far. With a record of 1-4, the team has spent the majority of its time playing on the road. After winning its first match against Northern Arizona, it has lost four consecutive matches to No. 29 Arizona, No. 37 Arizona State, No. 5 Stanford and Santa Clara.
Freshman Tiffany Pham and senior Ellie Edles won in straight sets against Santa Clara on Feb. 3, while also winning their doubles match. However, the team could not overcome the strong play by their opponents, losing by a score of 4-3.
The team has been hit with one of the most challenging schedules that it has ever faced, with four Pac-12 teams in its first five matches. The Pac-12 is known as the powerhouse of collegiate athletics on the West Coast with the likes of California and the University of Southern California, while receiving constant national recognition.
Coach Bill Maze continues to be optimistic in the early going of the season.
“I think the season is going pretty well. Even though we are currently 1-4, we’ve played well in every match with positive attitudes and great guts,” he said.
In a typical tennis match between two teams, there is a total of seven points to be earned. Within the overall match, six singles matches are played accounting for one point apiece and three doubles matches accounting for one point. Whichever team wins two of the three doubles matches earns the point, contributing to the team’s overall score. Maze emphasizes improvement in the doubles category. He made his point clear that this aspect will be his team’s focus.
“Three things: doubles, doubles and more doubles,” he said. “If you win the doubles point, you only have to win three singles matches instead of four to win the overall match. So the doubles point is huge and even though we are getting better every day, our doubles still needs work.”
The team will head north to Oregon to play two matches in as many days. Starting on Saturday, the team will play against the University of Oregon (6-0) and will finish off playing against the University of Portland (1-2) the following day.
Maze made his philosophy of preparation sound simple, as he and his team will get ready for the two-match set.
“The same way we always prepare — get ahead in school, work hard, eat and sleep well and support each other on and off the court,” Maze said.
– Luke Bae