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Women’s tennis cruises to first-round win over UCSB

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No. 27 Stanford women’s tennis cruised to a 4-0 victory over No. 48 UC Santa Barbara (UCSB) (13-4, 8-0 Big West) in the first round of the NCAA championship in Malibu on Friday. The Cardinal showed shades of their early season success, when the team started with a 10-0 record, including a 7-0 win over the Gauchos on March 24. 

Senior Michaela Gordon clinched the match on court one with straight 6-3 sets and clinched the doubles point with junior Niluka Madurawe earlier in the afternoon. Gordon and Madurawe won their doubles set 6-3 while fifth-year Emily Arbuthnott and sophomore Angelica Blake won their’s 6-2.

Both Blake’s and Arbuthnott’s singles matches on courts two and three, respectively, were left unfinished. Instead, freshman Ana Geller and fifth-year Emma Higuchi would provide the other two points the Cardinal needed to secure victory. Geller defeated Lise Sentenac, 6-2, 6-1, while Higuchi won 12 straight games in a 6-0, 6-0 domination over UCSB’s Marta Gonzalez-Balbe.

The Cardinal will face the host Pepperdine Waves (20-3, 8-0 WCC) in the round of 32 on Saturday at 1 p.m. PT. The Waves are the tournament’s No. 5 seed, and were also ranked No. 5 when they ended Stanford’s unbeaten season with a 4-3 win over the Cardinal on April 2.

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Michael Espinosa '22 is majoring in international relations. He's the head of The Daily's social media team, and editor for the University beat and also occasionally writes for sports, arts, and The Grind. He's the biggest Taylor Swift fan at Stanford and the proudest New Yorker you will ever meet. Contact him at mespinosa 'at' stanforddaily.com.