Didn’t Even Break a Sweat

by Staff

There was a mild chance that rain would sweep through San Diegothis past weekend. Because of the forecast, the San Diego Statewomen’s tennis team was uncertain if it would be playing its seasonopening matches.

Fortunately, it never rained, and the lady Aztecs played on.

Their visiting opponents probably wish it had rained.

SDSU, which opened the weekend ranked 27th, wrapped up asuccessful beginning to its season Sunday with a convincing 7-0defeat of Rice. The Aztecs also earned a shutout on Saturday, with a7-0 decision over Pacific.

“I’m very pleased with our effort both days,” said head coachPeter Mattera. “To have two 7-0 scores against two solid opponents toopen the season is obviously a good sign, and hopefully a sign ofthings to come for this team.”

Playing under a new Division I scoring format for the first timeever, the Aztecs used their tremendous talent and depth to outlastthe Eagles.

The match began with the doubles competition, which SDSU won 2-1.Under the new scoring format, they received one point for the entirematch by winning two out of three doubles matches.

The only place the Aztecs truly struggled all day was at the No. 1doubles, where the duo of Whitney Wells and Katja Karrento dropped an8-2 decision to Rice’s Jeri Gonzales and Yasmine Fisher.

“We started out slow and didn’t quite have it together,” Wellssaid. “It’s usually our forte to come from behind, but we couldn’tquite get it together today.”

SDSU’s No. 2 doubles team of Lindsey Hedberg and Silvia Torniercame back from a 5-2 deficit to eventually earn an 8-6 victory overErin Waters and Natalie Briaud.

Hedberg had to miss Saturday’s match after being struck by a caron Friday night, but came back Sunday to win her No. 3 singles match.

The Aztecs displayed their depth later in singles competition,sweeping all but one of the sets at each match, gaining all sixsingles points.

“I thought the singles played very well,” Mattera said. “Everyonecame out with a very high concentration level and played aggressivelyat the right times.”

SDSU’s lost set in singles play came at the No. 5 match up betweenSDSU’s Becker and Eagle Goodrich, a match in which both playersexchanged long, exhausting rallies and close, exciting points. Beckerwon the first set 6-2, only to have Goodrich come back from a 2-3deficit to take the second set 6-3. Because the overall match hadalready been decided, the two then played a ten-point tiebreakerwhich Becker won 10-3.

“Going into the tiebreaker, I knew I had to put everything into itto have more energy on my shots,” Becker said. “Peter (Mattera) toldme to hit a lot down the middle and to her backhand, and thatworked.”

Saturday’s results proved just as successful for the Aztecs, asthey won each singles and doubles match in their shutout of visitingPacific.

Because of the absence of Hedberg on Saturday, coach Mattera hadto call on other players to move up in singles play. Freshman ErinPolowski was called on to play at No. 6 singles, and she earned herfirst collegiate victory in match play.

“It just speaks well of the depth and the mental toughness of ourteam,” Mattera said. “It also points out that everybody needs to comeready to play everyday.”