SANTA CLARA, Calif. – After an exhilarating 4-3 quarterfinal win over No. 5 San Diego on Thursday, the No. 4 seeded Santa Clara women's tennis team fell to No. 1 Pepperdine 4-0 in the semifinal match of the 2014 West Coast Conference Championships on Friday. The Broncos finished fourth in the WCC standings after reaching the semifinals of the Championships for the fifth straight year.
"I'm really happy and proud of this team," said Bronco head coach Ben Cabell. "They competed so hard and displayed a great competitive spirit throughout the entire tournament. Overall, we did really well and accomplished many of our goals."
The Broncos end the 2014 spring season with a 12-10 overall dual record after its 4-0 loss to the No. 1 seeded team. Santa Clara tallied 5-2 record at home, 3-6 on the road and 4-2 on neutral surfaces. The team went 5-4 in the WCC regular season this spring with wins over San Francisco, Loyola Marymount, Portland and Gonzaga.
Santa Clara faced a challenging competitor in Pepperdine, who is ranked No. 26 by the ITA, as the Waves got on the board first by winning the doubles point. The Bronco duo of Daniella Silva and Nicolette Wolny could not overcome Matea Curtura and Alejandra Granillo on court three, falling 8-3 to the Pepperdine team. Santa Clara's No. 1 partnership of Katie Le and Chelby Cooke topped the Wave's Lorraine Guillermo and Apichaya Runglerdkriangkrai in a tiebreaker, 8-7 (4), putting the doubles decision on court two.
The No. 2 team of Delphine Rouvillois and Stephanie Skaras went up against the No. 81 ranked duo of Michaela Capannolo and Yuki Chiang. The Broncos were able to push the match into a tiebreaker, but the Waves proved too much, taking the match and clinching the doubles point by a score of 8-7 (3).
Santa Clara had to convert four out of the six individual matches to take the win and advance to the Championship match, but Pepperdine carried its momentum and energy from doubles into singles. The Waves captured the necessary singles victories on courts 6, 2 and 5 to end the day in their favor.
Apichaya Runglerdkriangkrai defeated Santa Clara's Nicolette Wolny on court six, 6-0, 6-3. Wolny helped the Broncos reach the semifinal match yesterday with her huge win over San Diego's Mikayla Morkel-Brink in two sets.
Pepperdine's Matea Cutura put her team up 3-0 with a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Delphine Rouvillois. After a thrilling three hour and forty minute match that put the Broncos into the semifinals, Rouvillois could not convert at the No. 2 spot today. Click here to watch Delphine Rouvillois talk about the quarterfinal match.
Recently returning from a mid-season lower back injury for the WCC tournament, freshman Daniella Silva could not edge Pepperdine's Yuki Chiang at the No. 5 position. The Vancouver, Canada native fell 6-1, 6-3, wrapping up her first season as a Bronco. Chiang clinched the match for the No. 1 seeded team, sending them into the Championship.
No. 29 Katie Le edged No. 24 Lorranie Guillermo in a first set in a tiebreaker, 7-6 (4). The Bronco senior upset Guillermo this season on March 22 where she won in two sets, 7-5, 6-4. The pair was on-serve in the second set before the match on court one was suspended. Le hopes to qualify for her third straight NCAA Division 1 Singles Championships in May. Selections will be announced later this week for the tournament hosted by the University of Georgia.
The No. 3 spot was also halted with Chelby Cooke up in the second set 5-3. Her opponent, No. 86 Ale Granillo, took the first set from Cooke 6-4.
Lastly, the match on court four was suspended when Pepperdine clinched at No. 5. Stephanie Skaras won the first set over the Wave's Michaela Capannolo, 6-2, but dropped the second set, 6-4. The match went unfinished before the third set could be played. This was the senior's last time playing collegiate tennis after three successful years as a Bronco.
"I am proud of Steph battling in her final college match," said Cabell. "She has had a wonderful career. She is a great player and was a big competitor for us through the years."
The Broncos finished fourth in the WCC standings after posting a 5-4 WCC regular season record. This was the fifth straight time the Broncos reached the semifinals of the WCC Championships.
The WCC final will showcase No. 1 Pepperdine versus No. 3 Saint Mary's on Sat., April 26 at 12:30 p.m.
#1 Pepperdine 4, #4 Santa Clara 0
April 24 | Barnes Tennis Center | San Diego, Calif.
Doubles | Order of Finish: 3, 1, 2
1) Katie Le/Chelby Cooke (SCU) def. Lorraine Guillermo/Apichaya Runglerdkriangkrai (PEP) 8-7 (4)
2) #81 Michaela Capannolo/Yuki Chiang (PEP) def. Delphine Rouvillois/Stephanie Skaras (SCU) 8-7 (3)
3) Matea Cutura/Alejandra Granillo (PEP) def. Daniella Silva/Nicolette Wolny (SCU) 8-3
Singles | Order of Finish: 6, 2, 5
1) #29 Katie Le (SCU) vs. #24 Lorraine Guillermo (PEP) 7-6(4), 1-2, Unfinished
2) Matea Cutura (PEP) def. Delphine Rouvillois (SCU) 6-2, 6-2
3) #86 Alejandra Granillo (PEP) vs. Chelby Cooke (SCU) 6-4, 3-5, Unfinished
4) Stephanie Skaras (SCU) vs. Michaela Capannolo (PEP) 6-2, 4-6, Unfinished
5) Yuki Chiang (PEP) def. Daniella Silva (SCU) 6-1, 6-3
6) Apichaya Runglerdkriangkrai (PEP) def. Nicolette Wolny (SCU) 6-0, 6-3
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