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Pac-12 Championship Week - Day 1 Serves Up Tennis - Preview and Game Thread

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On Day 1 of Bruins Nation's coverage of Pac-12 Championship week, UCLA's men's tennis team takes on the Washington Huskies this afternoon in a quarterfinal match. In women's tennis, the Bruins begin competing today for singles titles in two different Pac-12 tournaments.

@collegefunyes

Men's Tennis

Opponent: #61 Washington (13-10, 2-5)

When: Thursday, April 23, 3:00 PM PDT

Where: Ojai Valley Tennis Club, Ojai, CA

Live Stats: Pac-12 Live Results

Official Preview: None (Thanks, Dan!)

The third-seeded, 15th-ranked Bruins (14-8, 5-2) take to the courts this afternoon at Ojai Valley Tennis Club in a Pac-12 Championship quarterfinal contest. Their opponent is #61 Washington (13-10, 2-5), the Pac-12's sixth place team. The Huskies advanced to the quarterfinals with a 4-0 defeat of Utah yesterday.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Next up.... <a href="https://twitter.com/pac12">@pac12</a> Championships at <a href="https://twitter.com/TheOjai">@TheOjai</a>. Bruins will face winner between <a href="https://twitter.com/UW_MTennis">@UW_MTennis</a> &amp; <a href="https://twitter.com/UtahTennis">@UtahTennis</a> Thurs at 3 pm <a href="http://t.co/ZDiNnYRgvH">pic.twitter.com/ZDiNnYRgvH</a></p>&mdash; UCLA Men&#39;s Tennis (@uclatennis) <a href="https://twitter.com/uclatennis/status/589887357844791296">April 19, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

The Bruins and Huskies squared off a little less than a month ago. On that occasion, the Bruins cruised to a comfortable 6-1 win without UCLA's No. 1 player, Mackenzie McDonald, being involved in the action. In that match, all of UCLA's wins in singles were in straight sets, and the Bruins won the doubles point handily. In other words, the Bruins dominated from start to finish.

Although the Bruins haven't been in top form recently, it seems pretty unlikely that Washington will be able to pull off an upset today. Although there's no certainty that UCLA and Washington will field their strongest teams, assuming that both teams do, the matchups should look like this:

Doubles:

  1. Mackenzie McDonaldMartin Redlicki versus Emmett Egger & Jeff Hawke
  2. Joseph Di GiulioKarue Sell versus Joao Barra & Viktor Farkas
  3. Dennis MkrtchianAustin Rapp versus Jake Douglas & Wendell Watanabe
Singles:
  1. Mackenzie McDonald versus Mitch Stewart
  2. Dennis Mkrtchian versus Jake Douglas
  3. Martin Redlicki versus Gal Hakak
  4. Karue Sell versus Emmett Egger
  5. Austin Rapp versus Joao Barra
  6. Joseph Di Giulio versus Jeff Hawke
There's not a lot separating the top four teams (UCLA, USC, Stanford, Cal) in this tournament. The Bruins have a decent shot at winning the Pac-12 Championship title, but they have to start producing stronger, more consistent performances. A dominant win against Washington this afternoon will give the Bruins confidence and momentum heading into (presumably) tomorrow's grudge match against Southern Cal.

Go BRUINS!

Women's Tennis

When: Thursday, April 23

Where: Ojai Valley Tennis Club, Ojai, CA

Live Stats: None

Official Preview: None (Thanks, Dan!)

Unlike the men's tournament, the women's Pac-12 championship consists of four separate singles and doubles competitions. In singles, there's the Pac-12 Singles Championship and the Pac-12 Singles Invitational; in doubles, there's the Pac-12 Doubles Championship and the Pac-12 Doubles Invitational.

The reason for this odd setup in which two separate tournaments run concurrently as components of the Pac-12 Championships is that the weekend time frame simply doesn't allow for the singles bracket to have more than five rounds. Therefore, in order to give more players a chance to compete in Pac-12 tournament action, a parallel "second-tier" tournament (the Pac-12 Invitational) has been created.

According to the Pac-12 Singles Championship bracket, UCLA will be represented by Jennifer Brady, Catherine Harrison, and Chanelle Van Nguyen. The start times and opponents for their matches are as follows:

UCLA Opponent Start Time Second Match Start Time
(if advancing)
Jennifer Brady Oregon's Nicole Long 9:30 AM 2:15 PM
Catherine Harrison Oregon's Alyssa T. Tobita 11:00 AM 4:00 PM
Chanelle Van Nguyen Arizona State's Stephanie Vlad 12:45 PM 4:00 PM

The Pac-12 Doubles Championship matches commence on Friday.

The Bruins will be represented by Kaitlin Ray, Terri Fleming, and Kristin Wiley in the Pac-12 Singles Invitational. The start times for their matches in the second-tier tournament are as follows:

UCLA Opponent Start Time Second Match Start Time
(if advancing)
Kaitlin Ray Stanford's Paulette F. Wolak 8:00 AM 2:15 PM
Terri Fleming Stanford's Nora Tan 9:30 AM 2:15 PM
Kristin Wiley Stanford's Lindsey Kostas 12:45 PM 4:00 PM

The Pac-12 Doubles Invitational matches begin on Friday.

Result for all of the women's matches should be available at the Pac-12 Women's Tennis Championship website.

Go BRUINS!