THIS WEEK: Washington State takes a 15-5 record (1-3 Pac-12 play) into the weekend match ups at No. 2 UCLA and No. 12 USC in Los Angeles. The Cougars begin with UCLA Friday at 11:30 a.m. The Bruins enter with a 15-1 overall mark, 3-1 in conference action, and riding a seven-match winning streak. UCLA has five players in the national singles rankings, led by No. 4 Robin Anderson, while two doubles teams are ranked in the top five. USC enters the weekend with a 12-4 mark, 3-0 in Pac-12 play, as it hosts Oregon Friday before facing WSU Saturday at 1 p.m. USC has four players in the national rankings along with all three doubles teams.
LAST WEEK: The Cougars returned to Pac-12 play at the Arizona schools, falling to No. 45 Arizona 4-1 and No. 25 Arizona State 42.
UP NEXT: Following Saturday’s match at USC, the Cougars return home for a six-match homestand to close out the regular season. WSU will host No. 41 Pepperdine Thursday at 11 a.m. and No. 48 Washington Friday (Apr. 4) at 11 a.m.
COUGARS ON PAC-12 NETWORKS: Friday’s match at UCLA will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks, beginning at 1 p.m. While doubles play begins at 11:30 a.m., the Pac-12 Network coverage will begin at 1 p.m. with coverage of the singles matches. This is the first televised match for WSU this season and second Cougar tennis match to be broadcast, as the Washington State-Washington last season was also televised.
SCHEDULE GETS TOUGHER FOR COUGARS: The Cougars are in the most difficult portion of their schedule. Last week they resumed Pac-12 play with losses to No. 45 Arizona and No. 25 Arizona State. This week they face No. 2 UCLA and No. 12 USC, followed by consecutive matches against Pepperdine (41), Washington (48), Denver (69), California (13) and Stanford (5).
COUGARS ADJUST UPCOMING SCHEDULE: Washington State has adjusted its upcoming home schedule and will now play two matches Saturday, April 12. The Cougars were scheduled to face California Friday, Apr. 11 and Stanford Sunday, Apr. 13. Both of those matches have been moved to Saturday, Apr. 12, with the Cougars hosting California at 9 a.m. and Stanford at 2 p.m. Additionally, the match against Denver, Wednesday, Apr. 9, will now begin at 9 a.m.
WSU REMAINS IN NATIONAL RANKINGS: The Cougars are ranked No. 53 this week, the sixth-straight week in which they have been ranked after entering poll February 18 at No. 59. Junior Elizaveta Luzina returns to the singles poll at No. 106.
COUGARS AT 20-WIN MARK: While junior Elizaveta Luzina leads the team with 26 singles victories this season, three others have now reach the 20-win plateau. Sophomores Maria Biryukova and Lize Leenknecht recorded their 22nd singles victories of the season last week while sophomore Dajana Ognjenovic also hit the benchmark and stands at 20 wins on the season.
COACH HART: Lisa Hart is in her 11th season as the head coach of Washington State. Hart has accumulated 138 wins over her Cougar tenure, and 182 in her career that includes three years as head coach at Virginia Tech. In 2012 the Cougars went 19-7 as Hart was awarded the Pac-12 Conference Women’s Tennis Coach of the Year award for the 2011-12 season.