Waves to Host LSU, Sacramento State

UPCOMING — The #19 Pepperdine women’s tennis team will look to rebound after dropping two matches last week to nationally-ranked opponents as they will face host #33 LSU on Monday, Feb. 4 at 1:30 p.m before hosting #56 Sacramento State on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 1:30 p.m.

MATCH #4 — Monday (Feb. 4) at the Ralphs-Strauss Tennis Center: Pepperdine (1-2) vs. LSU (2-0) at 1:30 p.m.

MATCH #5 — Sunday (Feb. 10) at the Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center: Pepperdine (1-2) vs. Sacramento State (2-0) at 1:30 p.m.

OPPONENT INFO — LSU is ranked #33 in the nation in the latest ITA Collegiate Rankings. The Tigers feature the eighth-ranked singles player in the nation in Megan Falcon and the duo of Staten Spencer and Mykala Hedberg is ranked #30.

Sacramento State is ranked #56 in the nation in the ITA Rankings and features the #66 ranked singles player in Katrina Zheltova. The Hornets defeated UC Santa Barbara 6-1 on Feb. 2 to stay undefeated on the year.

LAST WEEK — The Waves dropped two matches to top 10 teams, as they fell 5-2 to eighth-ranked USC on Jan. 31 before falling to #3 UCLA, 5-2 on Feb. 1. The Waves claimed the doubles point in each match, as the duos of Sylvia Kosakowski/Bianca Dulgheru and Anete Bandere/Anamika Bhargava won their matches against both the Trojans and Bruins and Bhargava claimed the Waves’ lone singles point in each match.

WAVES IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS — The Pepperdine women’s tennis team is ranked #19 in the nation in the latest ITA Collegiate Rankings.

In the individual rankings, Sylvia Kosakowski is ranked the #99 singles player and Anamika Bhargava and Anete Bandere are ranked #35 in doubles.

2007 TOURNAMENT WINS — Anamika Bhargava claimed the singles titles at the SDSU Fall Tennis Classic and the Matador Collegiate Invitational. The doubles tandem of Tania Rice and Bhargava claimed the SDSU Fall Tennis Classic crown, while the team of Sylvia Kosakowski/Bianca Dulgheru won the Matador Collegiate Invitational title.

GUALBERTO ESCUDERO — Now in his 31st season as head coach of the Waves, Gualberto Escudero entered the 2007-08 season with a career record of 543-269 over 30 seasons, which includes 19 conference championships and 24 postseason appearances. Escudero has received numerous accolades for his work with the Waves, as he was named the University’s Coach of the Year in 1984 and 1989, selected the ITA’s District VIII Coach of the Year in 1991 and 1992 and was named WCC Coach of the Year for the first time in 1999. Escudero also earned the league’s top honor again in 2000 when the team went 21-5. In 2006, Escudero was named the ITA West Region Coach of the Year as well as the WCC Co-Coach of the Year, sharing the honor with LMU’s Jamie Sanchez after leading the Waves to a 21-4 mark and the WCC title.

PEPPERDINE HISTORY — The Pepperdine women’s tennis program is consistently nationally ranked, as the Waves are a perennial national power. The Waves have advanced to postseason play 24 times in 30 seasons. Pepperdine’s has finished the year ranked in the top 10 seven times, with the most recent one coming in 1999.

BIANCA DULGHERU — Senior Bianca Dulgheru has been a standout for the Waves in each of her three seasons on the court. Last season, Dulgheru and teammate Sylvia Kosakowski were named All-Americans in doubles and she is three-time All-WCC first-team pick and the WCC’s Player of the Year in 2006 and Freshman of the Year in 2005. In the 2007 fall tournament season, Dulgheru went 7-4 in singles and 3-2 in doubles with Kosakowski as they claimed the doubles crown at the Matador Collegiate Invitational.

SYLVIA KOSAKOWSKI — Senior Sylvia Kosakowski is the Waves’ only player nationally ranked in singles, coming in at #99 in the ITA Collegiate Rankings. Kosakowski was named an All-American last season in doubles with Bianca Dulgheru and is a two-time All-WCC first-team selection. Kosakowski finished the fall tournament season 7-4 as an individual and a combined 6-3 in doubles with teammates Bianca Dulgheru (3-2) and Anete Bandere (3-1) and claimed the doubles crown at the Matador Collegiate Invitational with Dulgheru.

ANAMIKA BHARGAVA — Freshman Anamika Bhargava is in her first season on the court for the Waves, but is already making an immediate impact. Bhargava ranks #35 nationally in doubles with Anete Bandere heading into the spring season and finished the fall tournament season with a 10-2 mark in singles and an 11-3 mark in doubles with Tania Rice (6-1) and Bandere (5-2). Bhargava led the team in wins in each category and claimed two singles titles: the SDSU Fall Tennis Classic and the Matador Invitational, and claimed the doubles crown at the SDSU Fall Tennis Classic with Rice.

ALEX LILES — Junior transfer Alex Liles is in her first season in a Waves uniform after transferring from the University of Florida in 2007. Liles finished the fall tournament season 6-3 in singles and had a 4-3 mark in doubles with Jill Braverman (3-2) and Tania Rice (1-1). Liles received a medical redshirt for the 2006-07 season at Florida after missing the entire spring season and most of the fall due to injury.

ANETE BANDERE — Anete Bandere returns to the court for her sophomore season in 2008 and ranks #35 nationally in doubles with Anamika Bhargava. Bandere finished the fall tournament season with a 4-6 singles record and a combined 8-3 doubles record with Bhargava (5-2) and Sylvia Kosakowski (3-1).

TANIA RICE — Sophomore Tania Rice finished the fall tournament season 5-6 in singles and a combined 7-2 in doubles with Anamika Bhargava (6-1) and Alex Liles (1-1). Rice teamed with Bhargava to claim the doubles crown at the SDSU Tennis Classic and their record together is tops on the team in wins and winning percentage (.857).

JILL BRAVERMAN — Sophomore Jill Braverman had a successful fall tournament season, posting a 4-2 record in singles and 3-2 mark in doubles with Alex Liles. Braverman enjoyed an impressive freshman season during the 2006-07 campaign, as she finished 14-10 in singles and earned All-WCC doubles honorable mention honors with Katia Sabate after the duo posted a 6-1 record.

2006-07 RECAP — The Waves claimed their fifth consecutive WCC title last season and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a first round victory over Cal State Long Beach before falling to Fresno State in the second round. Pepperdine placed five players on the All-WCC team and Bianca Dulgheru and Sylvia Kosakowski were named to the ITA All-American squad in doubles after advancing to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championships.



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