Women’s tennis prepares to take on Bears

Feb. 26, 2015, 11:49 p.m.

Two of the best women’s tennis programs in the country face off this weekend in what will be a match to remember: No. 7 Stanford and No. 8 Cal.

The Cardinal enter the match with a very respectable 7-1 record. Their only loss came in a nail-biter this past weekend against No. 2 Florida, in which they nearly battled back from an early 3-1 deficit but were eventually edged 4-3. The Bears are coming in with a 6-2 record.

Caroline Doyle (above) and Ellen Tsay pair up to be a formidable duo, in fact the 10th-ranked doubles unit in the country. They will likely take on Cal’s Susanyi and Fabikova on Saturday. (SHIRLEY PEFLEY/isiphotos.com)

The day will start off with doubles matches, which extraordinarily will feature four top-12 pairs. On Court One, Stanford’s duo of Carol Zhao and Taylor Davidson, ranked third in the country with a 6-1 record, will battle against Cal’s fourth-ranked pair of Maegan Manasse and Denise Starr. Stanford also boasts the 10th-ranked team of Caroline Doyle and Ellen Tsay, who will likely face Cal’s lower-ranked (No. 12) but more-creatively-spelled Zsofi Susanyi and Klara Fabikova.

Incredibly, the matchups do not get any less thrilling on the singles side. On first court, the Bears have Megan Manasse, whose No. 2 singles ranking will mark the highest-ranked player that the Cardinal will have faced this season. Stanford, however, will counter with No. 4 Carol Zhao, who is 8-0 in the season so far.

The Cardinal’s 13th-ranked Taylor Davidson also boasts an undefeated record in singles, coming off a huge win against Florida’s No. 3 Josie Kuhlman. After dropping the first set of that match, Davidson roared back and eventually conquering the third set 7-6 in an intense back-and-forth tiebreaker. She will likely face Cal’s No. 42 Fabikova on Saturday.

The final top-40 matchup of the afternoon will be between Cal’s 24th-ranked Susanyi and Stanford’s 22nd-ranked Caroline Doyle, who suffered her first loss of the season last week in Florida to drop to a still-solid 7-1.

The Cardinal eliminated the Bears in last year’s NCAA tournament in a 4-3 thriller. They will look to continue their winning ways this Saturday at Taube. Leave your keys in your pockets, however; you will get kicked out if you jangle them before every serve. Learned that one the hard way.

Contact Paul Steenkiste at pws ‘at’ stanford.edu

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