On top of their two victories over Pac-12 opponents, the Women of Troy celebrated coach Richard Gallien’s 300th win as the leading man of USC’s women tennis team this weekend at Marks Stadium.
After taking down the Oregon Ducks on Friday, the Women of Troy showed their affection for Gallien by dumping a tub of Gatorade on him at the conclusion of their 7-0 victory. Now in his 17th season at the helm, Gallien has enjoyed an illustrious tenure at USC and has accumulated a 301-127 record during his time here.
In the actual match against the Ducks, the Women of Troy saw their top doubles team, the second-ranked pairing of sophomore Kaitlyn Christian and freshman Sabrina Santamaria, drop their game on court 1, 8-7 (4). Luckily enough, the veteran duo of junior Danielle Lao and senior Alison Ramos won their match 8-3 as did the No. 52-ranked team of freshman Zoe Scandalis and junior Valeria Pulido.
With the doubles point in hand, USC began to exert their dominance over the match as singles rolled around. Just as they have all season long, courts four and five started the show for the Women of Troy. Christian jumped all over Oregon’s Pascale Neubert to take the match 6-1, 6-1 in the fourth slot and freshman Gabriella DeSimone, who recently won Pac-12 Player of the Week after two game-deciding victories, took care of Rabea Stueckemann on court five.
The 36th-ranked Santamaria shut down any hope that the Ducks had of a comeback with a decisive victory on court three as the freshman once again showed her chops in finishes game and in pressure situations.
The Women of Troy then turned their sights to Saturday where they faced off against the No. 22 Washington Huskies.
Despite a rain delay, which cut through the middle of the doubles’ display, the Women of Troy were able to keep their momentum from Friday as they plowed through the Huskies en route to their fourth straight shutout victory and seventh straight win overall.
Running their record to 16-2 — not to mention their undefeated conference record (5-0) — USC handled a Washington team that sits among the top 50 teams nationally.
Lead by Lao, the Women of Troy got off to a strong start after easily taking the doubles point to begin the day. After Lao recorded the first singles point because of Samantha Smith retiring down 5-0, USC didn’t take their foot off the pedal.
Santamaria stretched the lead out to 3-0 after thoroughly dismantling Capucine Gregoire on court three, earning her second victory of the weekend, followed by a game-ending win in fourth singles by none other then Christian.
The Women of Troy will look to keep their undefeated streak alive for another week. Staying home this weekend, USC has Arizona and Arizona State on tap at Marks Stadium in another double dose of Pac-12 conference play. With games against perennial powers Cal and Stanford on the horizon, the Women fo Troy need to make every win count if they want to keep their place at the top of the Pac-12.