Women’s tennis searches for fifth straight victory

March 10, 2021, 9:56 p.m.

In four matches, No. 24 Stanford women’s tennis (4-0, 2-0 Pac-12) has recorded four shutout victories. The next challenge for the Cardinal comes Thursday afternoon, when Saint Mary’s (2-2, 0-0 WCC) visits the Farm. 

Stanford opened its season against Santa Clara on Feb. 26 𑁋 a month later than the team would normally begin its spring season. The nontraditional start date was prompted by Santa Clara County COVID-19 guidelines that prohibited most collegiate sports from being played within the county; when the guidelines were adjusted in late January, it gave women’s tennis the green light to begin training for its first competition in over 350 days. 

The Cardinal defeated the Broncos 7-0 and fought its way to identical outcomes against UC Davis, Utah and Colorado. Senior Michaela Gordon has made it clear from the beginning that her No. 10 ranking is well-deserved; she has dominated in doubles play alongside court partner junior Niluka Madurawe, going 3-0 to open the year before falling to Colorado’s Sara Nayar and Fleur Eggink. 

Gordon has helped Stanford stay perfect in singles play by cruising to easy victories over opponents. She coasted past Santa Clara’s JennaMarie Gordon 6-1, 6-0 before going 6-0, 6-0 over UC Davis’ Sara Tsukamoto. Gordon continued the trend with a 6-1, 6-1 defeat of Utah’s Lindsay Hung, but ran into trouble against Colorado’s Nayar and narrowly earned a singles victory in three sets. 

Following the Cardinal’s bout with Colorado, Stanford is 24-0 in singles play. Aside from Gordon, No. 68 fifth-year Emily Arbuthnott, No. 114 senior Janice Shin, junior Sara Choy and freshman Ana Geller are 4-0 individually. 

Stanford will need to utilize its momentum against the Gaels, who enter Thursday’s matinée on a two-game win streak. No. 17 Mariia Kozyreva has been operating in the No. 1 singles spot for Saint Mary’s, making it likely that fans will see a top-20 singles showdown with Gordon leading the Cardinal. 

The Cardinal and the Gaels head into the matchup after five and six-day breaks in competition, respectively. Stanford was slated to face Pacific on Tuesday, but rain concerns resulted in the match being scratched from the schedule. 

Stanford versus Saint Mary’s action gets underway at 2 p.m. PT on Thursday.

Savanna Stewart is a managing editor in the Sports section. She is a junior from Twin Bridges, Montana studying Political Science and Communication and enjoys running and playing basketball. Contact her at sstewart 'at' stanforddaily.com.

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