Loyola Marymount Pays a Visit to Troy

    March 21, 2017

    USC Women's Tennis Release Get Acrobat Reader

    THIS WEEK
    The No. 40 USC women’s tennis team (4-7) returns to Marks Stadium to take on the Loyola Marymount Lions in a non-conference match on Wednesday (March 22) at 3 p.m.

    THE LAST MEETING
    USC7
    Loyola Marymount0
    January 14, 2015
    Manhattan Beach Country Club
    No. 14 USC Women Serve Up Sweep Of LMU To Start 2015
    The No. 14 USC women's tennis team set a powerful tone for its 2015 season in a dominating season-opening sweep of Loyola Marymount tonight in Manhattan Beach. The Women of Troy made themselves right at home on the courts of the Manhattan Country Club in jumping out to an early lead with strong doubles play. Their strength continued right through singles, even as the cool, damp ocean air began to settle on the courts. Deservingly so, USC senior Sabrina Santamaria came through with the clincher for the Trojans tonight, marking her return to action for the first time since a season-ending knee injury taken last March. Santamaria and her Women of Troy jump out to a 1-0 start to the season with tonight's 7-0 sweep of the Lions.

    ORACLE/ITA RANKINGS UPDATES
    On March 21, the Oracle/ITA team rankings were updated, dropping the Women of Troy eight spots to No. 40 after their two losses to Baylor and Oregon last week (March 17 and 19, respectively). Three Pac-12 programs are currently in the nation’s Top 25: No. 5 Stanford, No. 12 California and No. 19 UCLA. The singles/doubles rankings were also updated on March 21, and three Trojans remain nationally ranked in singles. Junior Gabby Smith increased her position by five as she secured the No. 20 ranking, the highest singles ranking in her career. Sophomore Jessica Failla dropped to No. 47 (from No. 38) and senior Zoë Katz fell to No. 96 (from No. 88). In doubles, USC boasts four duos with national rankings. Failla/Valdes saw a significant increase in their ranking as they surged ahead to No. 33 (from No. 75). The tandem of Katz/Smith hold the No. 34 position (from No. 21) and Kulikov/Westby claim No. 67 (from No. 64). The pair of Valdes/Westby jumped into the rankings for the first time this season to tie for No. 74.

    SCOUTING LOYOLA MARYMOUNT
    Although the Lions are not in the Oracle/ITA national rankings and do not have any singles or doubles players ranked, they are currently 6-2 on the season and have not yet begun West Coast Conference play. Last week, LMU defeated Yale 4-3 (March 15) and Texas State 7-0 (March 16) to mark their sixth straight home win. To open their dual match season, the Lions hosted fellow Pac-12 opponent UCLA on Jan. 21 where they lost 5-2. The Trojans are 15-0 all-time against Loyola Marymount.

    WOMEN OF TROY FALL TO BAYLOR IN THE DESERT
    The No. 32 USC women’s tennis team fell to No. 16 Baylor 4-1 in a non-conference match on Friday night (March 17) in Indian Wells, Calif. at the BNP Parabas Open. With the loss, the Trojans dropped to 4-6 overall.

    The evening began with a Trojan win in doubles as USC’s No. 21 duo of Katz/Smith defeated Baylor’s Newborn/Van Zyl 6-1 on court two. The Lady Bears came back with a win of their own as Baylor’s Hinojosa/Shakhraichuk beat USC’s pair of Kulikov/Van Alphen 6-2 on court three. The Trojan tandem of Valdes/Westby closed out doubles with a 6-4 victory over Baylor’s No. 22 Profit/Shankle to claim the point for USC. This was the first time the Trojans had won the doubles point since their match against San Diego State on February 1.

    The Women of Troy entered singles with a 1-0 advantage. Baylor came out swinging to claim the first singles match as Lady Bear Jessica Hinojosa beat USC’s Sydney Van Alphen 6-0, 6-1 on court six. The Bears scored another point as No.11 Blair Shankle defeated Trojan Gabby Smith on court one 6-0, 6-1. This point pushed Baylor ahead, and the Trojans trailed 1-2.

    Shortly thereafter, USC’s Angela Kulikov fell to Lady Bear Angelina Shakhraichuk 6-2, 6-2 on court two to increase Baylor’s lead. The evening finished as Theresa Van Zyl topped USC’s Madison Westby 6-1, 6-3 to clinch the match for Baylor. The remaining courts suspended play.

    USC DROPS MATCH TO OREGON
    The No. 32 Women of Troy fell 4-3 in a tight match to the No. 35 Oregon Ducks on Sunday (March 19) in Eugene, Ore. With the loss, the Trojans dropped to 4-7 overall on the season and 0-3 in Pac-12 Conference play.

    The afternoon kicked off with doubles where Oregon made their first move as Duck duo Clark/Rose defeated USC’s Kulikov/Van Alphen 6-4 on court three. Oregon would claim the doubles point as Eshet/Kluiving secured their match by beating the No. 21 Trojan tandem of Katz/Smith 6-4 on court two.

    The Ducks entered the singles portion of the competition with a 1-0 advantage. The Ducks would strike again as Marlou Kluiving defeated USC’s Angela Kulikov 6-4, 6-1 on court six. Trojan Rianna Valdes would give the Women of Troy their first win of the day as she topped Oregon’s Nia Rose 6-2, 6-4. The momentum looked as if it was swinging back in favor of the Trojans as USC’s No. 113 Madison Westby nabbed a victory over Oregon’s Daniela Nasser 7-6 (3), 6-2. Westby’s win tied up the overall match score at 2-2 and broke Westby’s three match losing streak.

    Trojan No. 25 Gabby Smith notched another point for Troy as she was victorious over Duck Shweta Sangwan 7-6 (3), 6-3 to give USC their first lead of the match at 3-2.

    After a close 7-6 (2) loss in the first set to Oregon’s Julia Eshet, Trojan No. 88 Zoë Katz came back swinging to take the second set 6-2. After battling it out, Eshet would overcome Katz to take the third set 6-4.

    The match came down to the outcome of court two, which was locked in a nail biter of competition. USC’s No. 38 Jessica Failla dropped the first set 6-4 to Oregon’s Alyssa Tobita, but never lost her fire as she fought on in true Trojan form to win the second set 7-6 (6). The match was taken to a decisive third set, where Tobita overcame Failla to take the set 6-4 and won the match for the Ducks.

    GALLIEN
    Now entering his 22nd season at Troy, USC women’s tennis head coach Richard Gallien has strung together 20 straight NCAA appearances for his Women of Troy, 19 top-20 team rankings, three trips to the NCAA Semifinals and seven to the NCAA Quarterfinals. Under Gallien’s watch, USC has finished in the top-20 for the past 18 years, and has 11 top-10 finishes in that span. Since 2005, four Women of Troy have been named conference Player of the Year, and Trojan doubles teams have been honored as Doubles Team of the Year three times.

    A five-time Pac-12 Coach of the Year and four-time ITA Region Coach of the Year — having swept those awards in 2015 — Gallien has compiled a 367-144 (.718) overall record at USC while holding a career record of 429-168 (.719) in his 23 seasons as a head coach, including three years with the Pepperdine men’s program [Due to NCAA penalty, 7 wins left undecided and 1 win became a loss; Original USC record: 375-143 (.724) and original career total: 437-167 (.724)].

    NOTT
    USC associate head coach West Nott enters his 10th season at USC, honored as the ITA West Region Assistant Coach of the Year with the Women of Troy in 2009 and 2015. He came to Troy after serving as a volunteer assistant with the Washington men’s program, following a successful collegiate playing career at Georgia Tech.

    SCANDALIS JOINS COACHING STAFF
    Former USC ITA All-American and NCAA Women of the Year Finalist Zoë Scandalis will return to Troy as a volunteer assistant coach for the Trojans, head coach Richard Gallien has announced. The former Pac-12 Tom Hansen Conference Medal winner will work alongside Gallien and associate head coach West Nott.

    “We are really excited to have Zoë Scandalis joining us this season,” said Gallien. “Zoë is a tireless worker, loyal to our program and passionate about our current team. I feel like I’m always continuing to learn, so I look forward to getting Zoë’s perspective so I too can better help our team. Zoë may be young, but she is an old soul, and has wisdom beyond her years. We are certainly looking forward to working with her each and every day.”

    While at USC, Scandalis had a decorated list of accomplishments both on and off the court. She was a two-time ITA All-American, a two-time All-Pac-12 first team selection and a two-time All-Pac-12 second team honoree. She helped her teams to two NCAA Semifinal appearances, was selected as the 2014-15 team captain, was awarded the 2014 Female Trojan of the Year and was named the 2012 ITA National Player to Watch as a freshman. She set the record for Pac-12 Player of the Week honors as she collected six awards throughout her career. Scandalis was ranked at high as No. 7 in the nation in both singles and doubles, and went 108-48 in singles and 103-53 in doubles during her time at Troy.

    Off the court, Scandalis was the winner of an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship. She was the 53rd Trojan recipient of this scholarship and the first women’s tennis player to earn the award. She also was a three-time Pac-12 All-Academic first team honoree and a 2014 Capital One Academic All-District team selection. In addition Scandalis was a 2014-15 Pac-12 Tom Hansen Conference Medal recipient. This awarded is issued to the top male and female senior student-athlete at each Pac-12 institution. The award recognizes the exhibition of the greatest combination of performance and achievement in scholarship, athletics and leadership.

    Upon graduation, Scandalis played professionally on the ITF Professional Tennis Circuit. Last year, she took a break from the professional tour to return home to fulfill a dream of applying to be a Rhodes Scholar. Late in 2016, Scandalis was selected as a Rhodes Scholar Finalist.

    LAST SEASON
    The USC women’s tennis team had its NCAA path come to a close in Malibu as the No. 20 Trojans fell to No. 8 seeded host Pepperdine 4-2 in the NCAA Second Round. The loss wrapped up the Trojans’ 2016 season with a 13-6 overall record, having reached the NCAA Tournament for the 25th consecutive year and coming off a runner-up finish in the Pac-12 Conference race. The USC women have recorded a 72-33 all-time record in the NCAA Tournament and have made a remarkable 25 straight appearances, including three NCAA Semifinal trips in the last 11 seasons. 2016 senior Giuliana Olmos and her partner former sophomore Gabby Smith finished out their 2016 campaign ranked No. 6 in the nation in doubles, garnering All-American status for the two Women of Troy. They would go on to climb as high as No. 4 in the national doubles rankings, and earned a place in the NCAA Doubles Championships as a 5-8 seed. The duo compiled a 19-9 record together overall, and went 10-5 in dual matches along with a 4-0 mark in Pac-12 play.