AZUSA, Calif., and GLENDORA, Calif. - University of California San Diego women's tennis seniors Alexandra Weil and Chloe Wight each won a pair of singles matches Thursday, as well as combining for a doubles triumph, at the 2018 Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Regional Championships, hosted by Azusa Pacific University.
Weil, the No. 8 seed in the singles competiton, defeated fellow senior Alex Wartenberg of Dominican in straight sets, 7-5, 6-3, to begin her run early Thursday at APU's Munson and Bavougian Tennis Complex, while Wight eased past Biola sophomore Lily Waterhouse, 6-1, 6-1, at Citrus College right next door in Glendora. Weil later took down Cal State LA sophomore Chelsey Ruiz in a super tiebreaker, 6-3, 2-6, 10-8. Still at Citrus, Wight rallied from a one-set deficit to dispatch Academy of Art freshman Sofia Ragona, 4-6, 6-2, 10-7.
A third UC San Diego fourth-year senior, Ashley Chao (San Diego/Rancho Bernardo HS), was also set to play singles this week, but as the No. 6 seed, was a late scratch due to illness.
In doubles, Weil and Wight got past Dominican's Wartenberg and sophomore Kaitlyn Nguyen, 8-2, at APU on Thursday afternoon. They then turned right back around to face Azusa Pacific's tandem of senior Kara Hinton and Jackie Wagner, and were eliminated by the score of 8-4.
Returning to the singles court Friday in the Round of 16 at APU, Weil and Wight dropped straight-set decisions to Sonoma State senior Clarisa Colling (6-2, 6-1) and Concordia Irvine sophomore Ghazal Pakbaten (6-1, 7-5), respectively, to end their involvement. Pakbaten was the 2018 Pacific West Conference (PacWest) Freshman of the Year, a first-team All-PacWest honoree in singles, and the No. 2 seed at this ITA event.
"Alex and Chloe played great," said Liz LaPlante, now in her milestone 40th year in charge. "They had a tough day in high heat (on Thursday), playing two rounds of singles and doubles. Both had very tough matches and good wins. They had played a lot over the summer, and it was evident in how well they competed, and in their fitness."
The ITA Regional Championships marked the beginning and end of UC San Diego's 2018 fall competitive schedule. The Tritons' 2019 dual-match slate will be released at a later date.
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With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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