SportsWomen's Tennis

Oregon women’s tennis drops match at USC

Oregon women’s tennis played its first away match of the Pac-12 season, losing to Southern California 4-3.

The Ducks dropped their first doubles point since the Feb. 16 4-1 loss to Kansas. Oddly enough that was Oregon’s last road-loss this season.

USC’s Angela Kulikov and Rianna Valdes defeated Shweta Sangwan and Julia Eshet 6-0 to kick-off doubles play. Constance Branstine and Madison Westby then clinched the point at the three position by defeating Oregon’s Paiton Wagner and Nia Rose 6-1.

After last week’s grueling match against Washington State, which the Ducks lost, the team had a chance to get back into the win column against the struggling Trojans. The Ducks started off well in singles play, winning two of the first three results.

USC’s No. 37 Gabby Smith defeated Alyssa Tobita in the one position 6-2, 6-1 to give the Trojans a 2-0 lead.

This marked Tobita’s fourth match in her last five against top-50 opponents. The senior won in last week’s matchup with No. 49 Michaela Bayerlova and will most likely be playing a top-10 opponent in UCLA’s Ena Shibahara on Sunday.

The Ducks then won the next two results in the match with both freshman picking up victories.

Julia Lilien won her first match in the four position, defeating Kulikov 6-3, 6-4. This brings Lilien’s singles record to 10-4 on the season, the sixth Duck in double-digits.

Wagner returned to the lineup after being out against Washington State. She won her match against Branstine 6-1, 7-6.

With the match tied at two, USC’s Becca Weissman defeated Julia Eshet 6-1, 6-4.

Eshet returned to the three position, leaving the four position where she was 4-0 on the season.

The Trojans then clinched the match when Valdes defeated Sangwan 7-6, 6-3. This marks Sangwan’s third straight loss.

Daniela Nasser went on to win her match, but the Trojans had already taken the match-clinching fourth point.

The Ducks will stay in Los Angeles to take on the No. 15 UCLA Bruins at 12 p.m. this Sunday. The Bruins have five players ranked in the top-125, three who are in the top-50.

Follow Maverick Pallack on Twitter @mavpallack

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Maverick Pallack

Maverick Pallack

Maverick is an associate sports editor and reporter covering football, baseball, softball, track and field, women's tennis and men's tennis. You can follow him on Twitter @mavpallack or contact him at [email protected]