Bay schools exert dominance against Cougar tennis at home

It was a one-win weekend for No. 47 ranked Washington State tennis as two strong Pac-12 tennis programs made an appearance in Pullman. The Cougars fell to No. 6 ranked California 4-1 and No. 7 ranked Stanford 4-0, WSU is now 17-10 (2-7 Pac-12) on the season.

In doubles play against California, the Cougars found themselves behind early with the Bears taking the No. 2 and No. 3 matches. At No. 2, the Cougar duo of Maria Biryukova and Olga Musilovich fell to California’s Maegan Manasse and Denise Starr 8-2. At No. 3, WSU’s Charlotte Koning and Dajana Ognjenovic were defeated by Golden Bears Kelly Chui and Klara Fabikova 8-3.

In singles play, Musilovich recorded the lone victory of the day at No. 4 with a 6-2, 6-3 win over No. 94 Fabikova. The rest of the day was all California with straight-set victories at No. 3, No. 5, and No. 6, the Golden Bears left Pullman with a 4-1 victory.

“The depth both teams have really sets them apart from some of the other teams we have played,” said WSU Head Coach Lisa Hart.

In doubles play against Stanford, WSU also dropped the No. 2 and No. 3 matches to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. At No. 2, WSU’s Biryukova and Musilovich found themselves outmatched by Stanford’s 31st ranked doubles team of Taylor Davidson and Ellen Tsay with an 8-2 loss. At No. 3, Stanford’s Caroline Doyle and Krista Hardebeck defeated the Cougar duo of Koning and Ognjenovic 8-1.

In singles play, rain drove the matches from the outdoor courts to Simmelink where Stanford closed out the match with a 4-0 win. At No. 1, WSU junior No. 72 ranked Elizaveta Luzina fell to No. 47 ranked Hardebeck 6-3, 6-1. At No. 2, Stanford’s 22nd ranked Carol Zhao triumphed over Biryukova 6-3, 6-2. WSU sophomore Lize Leenknecht couldn’t win a set against the Cardinals’ No. 28 Davidson and lost 6-2, 6-3.

“They (WSU) never give up and always fight no matter who they are playing or how they are feeling,” Hart said. “As a coach this is all I can ask and I can’t be more proud of this specific team day in and day out.”

The Cougars will close out the regular season next Saturday against the Oregon Ducks (7-12, 1-7 Pac-12).

 “We are playing well and I’m happy with where we are at this point in the season,” Hart said. “We need to focus on the match in front of us. Oregon is a tough and well coached team. We need to be ready to play and battle.”

The match with the Ducks will mark the end of Olga Musilovich’s collegiate career.

“Olga always believes she will win and often finds a way to get the win.” Hart said. “With Saturday being senior day, it is extremely important to our team to compete hard and get the win for her. She has been very important to our team for four years and has been a consistent performer for us. We are going to miss her.”