Waves Enter West Coast Conference Tournament as the No. 1 Seed

Khunpak Issara

April 24, 2012

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MALIBU, Calif. - After capturing the first-ever West Coast Conference regular-season title, the #38 Pepperdine women’s tennis team enters the league championships as the No. 1 seed this weekend, April 25-28, at the Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego, Calif. As the top seed, the Waves earned a double bye, and will begin the tournament on Friday, April 27 in the semifinals.

MATCH #22 - Saturday (April 27) at Barnes Tennis Center: #34 Pepperdine (14-7, 8-0 WCC) vs. TBD at 12:30 p.m.

THE BRACKET - Pepperdine will not know its semifinal opponent until Thursday afternoon. No. 4 seeded Loyola Marymount faces No. 9 Portland on Wednesday in the first round, in addition to No. 5 Santa Clara vs. No. 8 Gonzaga. The team to emerge with two victories in the single-elimination tournament plays the Waves on Friday. On the other side of the bracket, No. 6 BYU and No. 7 San Francisco square off in the first round, with the winner slated to play No. 3 San Diego in the second round on Thursday. Saint Mary’s, the No. 2 seed, also received a double-bye and will open action in the semifinals on Friday. The championship match will be contested on Saturday, April 28 at 12:30 p.m.

COVERAGE - Score updates can also be followed on Twitter (@PepperdineWaves), while full results and recaps can be found at PepperdineSports.com at the end of each day.

LOOKING BACK - The Waves concluded the regular season with a 7-0 shutout against BYU last Saturday, bringing their WCC record to a perfect 8-0

LOOKING AHEAD - Selections for the NCAA Team Championships are scheduled to be released on Tuesday, May 1, while the field for the singles and doubles championship will be announced on Wednesday, May 2. First and second rounds for the team tournament are slated for May 11-12 at campus sites, while the remainder of the championship will be contested in Athens, Ga. on May 16-28.

DOUBLES PROWESS - Lorraine Guillermo and Khunpak Issara own a 17-3 doubles record this dual season, and earned their first win over a ranked opponent on March 12. The Wave duo defeated UCLA’s Robin Anderson and Skylar Morton, ranked #14 in the ITA doubles rankings, 8-4. They are currently riding an 11 match win streak and sit at #32 in the ITA doubles poll. They are the only WCC doubles pair to be listed in the ITA rankings.

BY THE NUMBERS - Lorraine Guillermo boasts a team-high nine-match win streak in singles and is 14-6 overall. Khunpak Issara has won eight of the last 10 and is 14-7 in duals this season. Megan Moore and Ali Walters both boast 13 singles victories apiece.

RANKINGS - As a team, the Waves are currently ranked #38, while Khunpak Issara sits at #63 in the singles rankings. Ale Granillo sits at #114 in the poll. Pepperdine’s #1 doubles pair, Issara and Lorraine Guillermo, have reached as high as #28 in the doubles rankings, and currently sit at #31.

THE REST OF THE WEST - Other West Coast Conference schools currently ranked by the ITA are Saint Mary’s (#41) and San Diego (#71). Four other individuals from the league can be found in the ITA singles poll including Katie Lee (#49, Santa Clara), Jenny Jullien (#86, Saint Mary’s), Catherine Isip (#105, Saint Mary’s) and Anna Depenau (#112, San Diego)

REGULAR SEASON RESULTS - Pepperdine is a combined 45-3 in singles and 17-4 in doubles versus WCC opponents. The Waves swept Portland, Gonzaga, San Diego, San Francisco and BYU, while scoring a 6-1 decision against Loyola Marymount. Up against Saint Mary’s during the regular season, the Gaels took the doubles point before Pepperdine fired back in singles and won 5-2.

WEST COAST CONFERENCE - 2012 marks the first season that all nine member schools will face each other during the regular season, prior to the conference tournament. In past seasons, teams were not required to play other teams in the conference and seeding at the WCC Championships was based on ITA rankings and overall records. This season, regular-season standings will determine the seeding. This year’s tournament will take place on April 25-28 in San Diego, Calif. The Waves have won 22 of the last 24 league championships.

WCC PLAYER OF THE MONTH - FEBRUARY - Khunpak Issara and Lorraine Guillermo went a team-best 5-2 in doubles during the month of February. On February 10 the Waves faced Florida, the defending 2011 NCAA team champions and ranked #1 at the time. Although Pepperdine suffered a 5-2 loss, Issara and Guillermo tallied a win over the Gator’s top doubles team of Allie Will (ranked #1 in singles by the ITA) and Alexandra Cercone. In the final dual of the month, the Wave tandem rallied from behind to defeat Arizona State’s Jacqueline Cako and Hannah James 7-1 in the tiebreaker to help clinch the doubles point for Pepperdine. Issara and Guillermo’s only two losses were to doubles teams ranked in the top five. Issara and Guillermo were previously awarded WCC Doubles Team of the Month in September of last fall.

SOCIAL MEDIA - Fans can follow the Waves on Twitter @PepperdineWaves and “like” us on Facebook by searching for Pepperdine Athletics.

WCC PLAYERS OF THE MONTH - NOVEMBER - Freshman Lorraine Guillermo went a perfect 3-0 at the Mission Hills Desert Classic to finish her rookie fall season with a team-best 9-3 record in singles and earn WCC Singles Player of the Month for November.

WCC PLAYERS OF THE MONTH - OCTOBER - Khunpak Issara tallied a team-high four victories during the month of October to win her first WCC Singles Player of the Month award.

WCC PLAYERS OF THE MONTH - SEPTEMBER - The Waves swept the first installment of the WCC Player of the Month awards, winning in both singles and doubles. Ale Granillo was named Singles Player of the Month after a 5-0 start and winning the singles bracket at the Racquet Club Collegiate Invitational. Khunpak Issara and Lorraine Guillermo won Doubles Team of the Month honors after reaching the semifinals of the same event.

ROSTER - Pepperdine returns eight letterwinners from last year’s 15-8 team, including 2011 all-conference team members in Arianna Colffer, Khunpak Issara, Ale Granillo, Andrea Oates and Marie Zalameda. Joining the team is Walnut, Calif. native Lorraine Guillermo, who ranked in the top-10 on the Class of 2011 National Recruiting list.

Gualberto Escudero - Now in his 35th season at the helm of the program, Gualberto Escudero enters the 2011-12 season with a career record of 604-308 (.667). He took over as head coach in 1977-78 after a decorated career as a student-athlete at Pepperdine. On the court, he was a finalist at the 1969 WCAC singles tournament and won the doubles title with John Lovelace. Pepperdine won conference titles in 1969 and 1970 and finished second the next two seasons. His transition from player to coach was a successful one as Escudero has tutored 29 All-Americans, and was honored as WCC Coach of the Year on three occasions.

2011 RECAP - The Wave reclaimed the West Coast Conference title in 2011, defeating Loyola Marymount and Saint Mary’s en route the championship match versus San Diego. The team made its 24th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament and finished the season with 15 dual match victories. Anamika Bhargava earned All-WCC first team distinction in both singles and doubles, becoming the first Pepperdine player in program history and just the second in the conference to do so all four seasons of her collegiate career. Other all-conference honorees in 2011 include Arianna Colffer (singles, first team), Khunpak Issara (singles, second team; doubles, first team), Andrea Oates (singles, honorable mention), Marie Zalameda (doubles, first team) and Ale Granillo (doubles, first team).

ABOUT PEPPERDINE — Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won NCAA Division I championships in five different men’s sports - one of just 16 schools to have accomplished this feat - and nine overall. Of this elite group, Pepperdine has the smallest enrollment and is the only school not in a major conference. Located in scenic Malibu, Calif., the university overlooks the Pacific Ocean and its campus and athletic facilities are regularly voted among the nation’s most beautiful. Pepperdine, which is affiliated with the Church of Christ, ranks #55 overall on U.S. News and World Report’s list of America’s best colleges. The 2011-12 school year marks Pepperdine’s 75th anniversary.



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