ORANGE, Calif. – The Chapman University women's tennis team won for the third straight time – a season-best win streak – defeating visiting UC Santa Cruz 5-4 in a non-conference match at the Chapman Tennis Courts on Thursday afternoon. The No. 30-ranked Panthers narrowly edged the Banana Slugs thanks to straight sets wins in the final two singles matches of the day.
It was senior Kelley Klebenow on the No. 5 court and junior Laura Galijan on the No. 6 court that brought Chapman (10-6) back from behind for the win. Klebenow won for the third straight time and improved to 10-3 this season with a 6-0, 6-0 win over UCSC's Monika Prokes. Galijan improved to 3-2 this season with a 6-0, 6-1 win over the Slugs' Kassondra Heacock.
The Panthers dug themselves a hole early on, losing two of the three doubles matches, including a minor upset on the No. 1 court where the West Region's No. 5-ranked sophomore Andrea Hammer and junior Rachel Fox lost to No. 6-ranked Alexandra Scotten and Katy Collins from UC Santa Cruz 8-5.
Hammer then lost on the No. 1 singles court to Scotten in straight sets while Chapman junior Sophia Duong and freshman Madeline Saunders earned wins from the Nos. 2 and 3 positions. Duong is quietly putting together one of the winningest seasons in Panther history as she won her third straight and improved to 16-3 in singles play this year.
Chapman resumes SCIAC play with a regular season wrap on Friday at Cal Lutheran and Saturday at home (Anaheim Hills Racquet Club) against La Verne at 2 p.m. The Panthers will play in the Ojai Valley Tournament next weekend before the SCIAC Championships begin May 2-3.
by Doug Aiken
Sports Information Director