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Team on the Rise: Douglas-Miron and Shimizu

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Doubles pair, Elianne Douglas-Miron and Riko Shimizu, have undoubtedly grabbed attention with their huge doubles win in the most recent dual match against the UCLA Bruins. The new and unranked doubles duo handily defeated the #12 team in the nation 8-3. Certainly, Douglas-Miron and Shimizu have proven themselves to be a team for fans to follow and for future opponents to fear.

 

Embracing the top doubles line-up spot for the Washington Huskies is no easy task, but Douglas-Miron and Shimizu are quickly coming into their own as a strategic, efficient, versatile, high-energy and electrifying team to look out for. On what it took to earn their big win this last Friday, Douglas-Miron voices a simple answer,

 

"Riko [Shimizu] and I did not think about the outcome. We concentrated on executing the plan we established with the coaches and the results followed." As for Shimizu, her answer stems from a realization they received from only a day prior,

 

"I think we felt more confident going into the UCLA match after our loss to the country's #1 doubles team from USC the day before. Instead of hanging our heads low after the loss, we recognized how well we competed."

 

However, Shimizu admits the biggest reason that pushed them for the great win that day was the fact that it was Douglas-Miron's birthday exclaiming, "We couldn't lose on her day!"

 

Aside from what the ladies felt took them to victory that day, there are many on-court factors that come into play with the formation of this talented team. Douglas-Miron and Shimizu share an eye for the doubles game and contribute their strengths well for a combined effort. Beyond that, they share an on-court chemistry that is undeniable and will surely take them where they aspire to go.  Any spectator will catch the smiles and laughter shared between the pair, no matter what situation they find themselves in. Shimizu provides the philosophy she shares with her partner,

 

"Many players have a tendency to focus on the outcome rather than the enjoyment of the competition. Elianne [Douglas-Miron] and I don't lose sight of what we are out there for and that is to have fun."

 

Douglas-Miron revealed that her way of keeping things lighthearted on the court is by singing to her partner!

 

This connection they possess in competition is strengthened by the friendship they have off the court. "We spend a lot of time together outside of tennis. We have become so close because of it; I tell her everything and I trust her 100%," Shimizu explains on what has bonded them.

 

As for Douglas-Miron, she claims that practicing and competing together in doubles is the best part of her day. Undoubtedly, all of this translates well into their on-court performance and there is nowhere for these two to go but up!

 

In the long term, the ladies aim to solidify a top national ranking, to secure a spot within the year-ending NCAA tournament, and to receive All-American status. We here at Washington have no doubt they will realize these goals!

 

This coming Friday and Saturday, the ladies and the rest of the Dawgs, are hard at work, preparing to extinguish the Arizona State Sun Devils and to defend the Dawg House from the Arizona Wildcats. Be sure to make your way over to watch this up-and-coming team compete on the Husky courts either indoors in the Lloyd Nordstrom Tennis Center or outdoors on the Bill Quillian Stadium Courts just across the way (weather dependent).  

 

Match-days and -times:

UW vs. ASU, March 29 (Fri.) @ 1:30

UW vs. Arizona, March 30 (Sat.) @ 12

 

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By, Samantha Smith

Volunteer Assistant Coach, University of Washington Women's Tennis

Off-Court Feature: Natali Coronel

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Often times, getting to know our Husky women outside of their role as a tennis player is hard to come by. So, in an attempt to help you learn a little about her off-the-court, Natali Coronel, sat down to answer some questions you may have been wondering...

 

Do you have a nickname?

Natali Coronel (NC): Yes, usually I am called, "Nati," by many people I know and within my team. It is a typical nickname for Natali, Natalia and Natacha in Argentine. I have also grown to like another nickname I have now, "Nat," which my coach, Jill, came up with... Only she can call me that!

 

 

 

What is your family life like?

NC: I have 2 younger siblings; sisters who I adore so much! There is Karen, who is 10 years old and Stephanie, who is 15. We all have a 5 year age difference which is sometimes tough but, mostly, we are so close and loving of one another. At home, we have 2 dogs, Boni and Kiara. My lovely mother is a school principal and a manager of another. She works extremely hard, is very supportive of our family and I am proud to have her!

 

 

 

What is something you did that not many people may know about?

NC: Well, when I was younger, I used to do diving. Actually, I was going to become competitive in that sport before I was introduced to tennis. In high school, for fun, I played handball and participated in ribbon dancing performances as well. 

 

 

 

 

What is your favorite day of the week?

NC: Before coming to school here, I would have always answered with 'Friday' because the weekend follows and I could relax and enjoy it. Now, Fridays, and the weekend that follows, usually includes competition, traveling, homework, presentations, studying and exams! I would say that now I do my best to find enjoyment in everyday, no matter how much is on my plate!

 

 

 

 

 

You are from South America, what is a big cultural difference that you encounter here in the States?

NC: Honestly, I don't know where to start! For me, the United States is just a different world from my own. In particular, I am amazed how critical thinking is encouraged. There are so many different perspectives out there! America has opened my eyes to many things: open-mindedness and the centrality of communication. All of this has made me more willing to share my personal thoughts and realize that I have a lot to contribute and offer.

 

 

 

If you met someone touring Seattle, where would you recommend them to eat?

NC: Blue C Sushi in University Village. I enjoy the variety of food and the colorful, refreshing environment that is there. It is a great place to be with friends or by yourself. 

 

 

 

 

Who are your favorite music artists? Most played songs on your iPod?

NC: My favorite music genre is Popular music so my favorite artists reflect that: Kelly Clarkson, Maroon 5, Bruno Mars, Katy Perry and Rihanna. I listen to so many songs constantly and there is so much out there. I will say right now my most played are, "Daylight" and "Payphone" by Maroon 5; "Stay" by Rihanna; "Try" by P!nk; and "When I Was Your Man" by Bruno Mars.

 

 

 

 

Who are your favorite actors?

Russell Crowe in, "Beautiful Mind," "Robin Hood," "The Next Three Days" and, of course, "Gladiator." He is so mysterious and intriguing. Another is, Haley Joel Osment from, "The Sixth Sense," "Artificial Intelligence," and "Pay it Forward." He has a great ability to connect with the audience and really draws on your emotions, even at such a young age! There's also, Natalie Portman, Kristin Stewart and Nina Dobrev whom I also enjoy.

 

 

 

What is a movie that you can watch over and over again?

NC: The first movie of the Twilight Saga. I have read the books and because I've been in an advanced digital video class, I really appreciate the cinematography of Katherine Hardwicke in this movie. The work she did is so fascinating. She created an atmosphere--with tone composition and unusual camera angles--that allowed me, as a viewer, to strongly connect with the story that was being told. 

 

 

 

Do you have a favorite professor here at the University?

NC: My favorite professor is Lee Osterhout in PSYCH 101. Although there was A LOT of course material, he made the it so interesting and fun that it wasn't hard to complete. His organization skills and teaching methods were amazing. I really appreciate the care, motivation and creativity he brought to every single class. I would take it again! 

 

 

 

If you were giving someone a "life tip," what would it be? And, can you explain why you might tell them that?

NC: The problem is not the problem itself, but our attitude to face it and courage to confront it. Someone once told me this in regards to how 'life,' in many ways, depends on our ability to solve the problems we encounter every day. No matter how well an individual might be doing in the many aspects of their life, problems will always arise. It is important to not give too much of our selves to those issues. Staying in the present and keeping in mind all of the good things that exist is enough to help a person separate the minor from the serious, and resolve problems in a positive way. Working towards your happiness is key!

 

 

 

What are you studying here at the UW?

NC: I will attempt to major in Psychology, not for the career opportunities, but mainly for personal growth and the critical life skills. Also, I am considering minoring in Public Health because I love helping and improving peoples' lives. 

 

Big thanks to Ms. Coronel for taking the time out of her busy schedule! Wish her luck as she competes in a pair of dual matches at home on Friday, Mar.22 @ 1:30p vs. USC and Saturday, Mar. 23 @ 12p vs UCLA! Be there! ~Go Purple. Be Gold~ 

 

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Preview: Huskies Face USC & UCLA

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Thumbnail image for Elianne Backhand 2013.jpgThe Husky women are back at it again with another weekend of competition. This time though, the ladies are here to stay and defend their purple courts (and next week too!). This Friday (3/22) and Saturday (3/23) are big days for the Dawgs as they will take on top-10 opponents: the USC Trojans and the UCLA Bruins.

Last Friday (3/15), our Washington ladies were duck-hunting in Oregon and came back to Seattle with a satisfying 5-2 win over the Ducks. Back in Southern California, USC and UCLA were trading off competition between Utah and Colorado on the same weekend (3/15 & 3/16). Those dates marked USC's opening week of Pac-12 Conference play, against Colorado then Utah. The Trojan women won both dual matches 7-0. As for UCLA, the Bruins faced Utah then Colorado, winning 6-1 in both match-ups.

You can look forward to plenty of great tennis being played as the opponents are fierce and there is a lot to fight for! Please come and show your support to the Husky women on both match-days at the Lloyd Nordstrom Tennis Center. If you cannot be there in-person, be sure to follow and watch them live via video streaming and stats. However, if weather permits, the Dawgs will be competing outdoors on the Bill Quillian Stadium courts! Go Huskies!
Match-days and -times:

Washington Huskies vs. USC Trojans, Friday (3/22) @ 1:30p
Washington Huskies vs. UCLA Bruins, Saturday (3/23) @ 12p
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UW defeats Oregon, Match Review

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A day prior to their match-up against the University of Oregon, the Husky women were already on-point with an excellent hitting session under their belt. Every team member was incredibly focused, their ball timing was great, and you could feel the intensity that they, undoubtedly, took into today's Pac-12 dual match. The weather was perfect for tennis and the Husky ladies played accordingly winning 5-2 over the No. 55 Ducks.

 

Take a look at some quotes from coaches, Jill Hultquist (Head) and Luke Shields (Assistant), regarding the match and their prospects for the upcoming weekend against USC and UCLA. Riko Shimizu, who clinched the winning point in today's competition (7-5, 6-4), gives her thoughts on today as well!

 

 

As coaches, how did you both feel about going into this match-up?

Jill Hultquist (JH): "I felt good about going into this match as our girls have been working really hard and playing well.  We knew it was going to be a tough match as Oregon was coming off of a ranked-win against Denver.  Oregon is always very feisty and competitive so we prepared the girls for that."

 

Luke Shields (LS): "We felt very confident as a team. We have had great practices and have consistently gotten better over the last 6 months. We have done a great job of focusing on our own games each match. Our mindset has been outstanding so coming into the match we felt very strong."

 

Tell me about the team's performance today. Also, what does it mean going forward into next week's challenges against USC and UCLA?

JH:  "Next week's matches are against the teams we have struggled against. They are top 10 teams and they are very polished.  To beat them we have to be on our game and take advantage of the opportunities that are given to us if we are going to beat them."

 

LS: "We did some things well and we can definitely build off of this weekend. We are more concerned about long term goals and getting better with each match. If we keep doing the right things and if we keep growing as a team the results will come."

 

 

What is something that you were particularly proud to see today that you have, as a team, made an effort to work on earlier this week (in preparation for Oregon)?

JH:  "We have had good success in doubles as we have been working really hard on it and adding new elements every couple of weeks so it is always fun to see them implement it in their games and see their success with it.  Singles we are working on being more aggressive and moving forward. The team did a great job with that today as well."

 

LS: "We stuck to our game plans well. Even if we lost a few points we stuck to what we do well. We played high percentage tennis."

 

What were the big factors that won this match today?

JH:  "Staying disciplined with their game plan.  Each match, I give them a challenge to work on and I love to see them work on that in their matches.  Also, teamwork has been important for them this year and they are very supportive of each other and that helps everyone out on while they are playing."

 

LS: "Energy!"

 

Riko Shimizu put on a brave performance today at the 6th singles position. Here are some of her thoughts from earlier today: 

 

How do you feel about your performance today?

Riko Shimizu (RS): "I have had a rough week regarding many things. Although I do not feel that I performed my best today, I am proud of the way I competed; I fought really hard in this match and that is what lead me to victory. Also, I think everyone competed well and fought hard too so I am really proud of them for that."

 

After taking losses last week from Stanford and Cal Berkeley, what does this team win mean to you personally?

 

RS: "We took our losses to Stanford and Cal very well in the first place. Although they were tough matches, we learned a lot and saw that we could compete with the top teams. I am very happy about this win against Oregon and that our hard work throughout this week paid off. Also, the team did not let the previous losses affect us negatively. Instead, everyone carried a positive mindset throughout this whole week and I definitely think that helped us with the win today too."

 

What will you take from today's win into next week, when you face opponents from USC and UCLA?

 

RS: "Definitely the energy, the fight and the team spirit. USC and UCLA are top schools that I am excited to compete against on our home court. I am confident we will do well."

 

Next Friday (Mar. 22), the ladies take on the USC Trojans. Then, on Saturday (Mar. 23), the women face the UCLA Bruins. Save those dates!

 

 

Samantha Smith

Volunteer Assistant Coach, University of Washington Women's Tennis

Quick Preview: Dawgs Off to Oregon

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The Husky women will be off to Eugene, Oregon tomorrow morning to get settled and ready for their Friday match-up against the University of Oregon Ducks (at noon).

Last week, our ladies took a pair of losses on the road against Conference opponents, Stanford and California. Meanwhile, Oregon defeated Brigham Young University (5-2) and followed it up with their first ranked win of this tennis season, downing the No. 55 University of Denver (5-2).

 

Although the Huskies came up short a week ago, they have already shook it off and are looking to shut down the newly-ranked Ducks (#55) once again (Huskies topped Oregon 4-3 last season).

We will be sure to keep you updated on match-day with scores via Twitter,as well as provide you with post-match coverage here on the Tennis Blawg! WOOF! 

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram, too!

 

By Samantha Smith

Volunteer Assistant Coach, UW Women's Tennis

Former Husky Makes a Splash on the Women's Circuit

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Venise Chan, a two-time All-American and UW tennis standout has been making her mark at the professional level since graduating this past June. In a recent tournament in Chinese Taipei, Chan won her three matches in the qualifying draw to advance to the main draw.  There she beat her first opponent before losing in the round of 16.
There is another tournament currently being held in Manila, Philippines that saw Chan advance through the qualifying draw again to make it to the second round of the main draw.  You can stay up to date on her schedule and results on Chan's page on the ITF website.  We'll definitely be keeping an eye on her as she progresses through the professional ranks.  

Bill Quillian Courts Get A Facelift

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At 80-degrees and sunny it's a perfect afternoon for some tennis on the Bill Quilian Courts, where the Husky tennis teams practice and play their outdoor matches, but players coming to the popular courts the past two days have noticed something missing, namely white lines and nets.

The courts are being resurfaced this week, a process which involved wiping out the current paint job on Monday and theIMG_0762.jpgn starting from scratch Tuesday morning. Barrels

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of paint were spread around the courts starting today. For those who want to create the paint job on their own backyard court, the purple shade of the courts is Canadian Violet, while Grass Green provides the outer surroundings.

On the right are the courts stripped bare, with Tuesday's second stage to the left. 

Huskies Reach Washington State Open Finals

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Husky All-American Denise Dy is back in the final of the Washington State Open and will look to defend her singles title on Sunday morning at 10 a.m. at the Seattle Tennis Club. Dy, the top seed in the tourney, defeated fifth-seeded Irina Tereschenko, 6-2, 6-3 in the semifinals today. She will play former Stanford and TCU standout Story Tweedie-Yates in the final.

Dy was just one of several Huskies to win their semifinal matches on Saturday. 2009 graduate David Chu continued his impressive run with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Brian McPhee. Chu is unseeded but upset defending champ and No. 2 seed Angelo Niculescu, 6-1, 6-4 in the quarterfinals. In the final Chu will face top-seeded Roman Borvanov.

In doubles, Dy was a winner again, teaming with former UW All-American Dea Sumantri to defeat another pair of ex-Huskies, Katherine Costain and Lisa Proctor. Costain and Proctor lettered for UW in the 90's and Costain played in the NCAA doubles tourney. But the younger Huskies prevailed with a 6-0, 6-3 win today and will play for the title at 1 p.m. tomorrow.

In men's doubles, Husky legend Alex Vlaski and his partner Justin Bower rolled to a 6-0, 6-1 semifinal win and will shoot for the title Sunday at 2 p.m.

Also advancing was former Husky head coach Doug Ruffin, who is in the final of the men's 60 division.

Click here for full results and draws.

Huskies Move On In Washington State Open

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Play continues on at the Seattle Tennis Club this week in the 120th running of the Washington State Open, and a number of Huskies have moved through the early rounds into the Round of 16.

Top seed and defending champ Denise Dy opened with a 6-0, 6-1 win in women's singles. Joining her in the Round of 16 is junior Aleksandra Krsljanin, and former All-American Dea Sumantri.

Senior-to-be Tobi Obenaus has two straight-set wins under his belt and will now play top-seeded Roman Borvanov in the men's singles draw. In his second match he beat Aaron Wong, a UW teammate in 2008-09, by a 6-2, 6-2 score.

Brad Bator also moved into the Round of 16 with two easy victories, having lost just three total games over two matches. Incoming freshman Max Manthou has also advanced, winning his last match without surrendering a single game. 2009 grad David Chu is 2-0 as well and will play sixth-seeded George Jecminek on Thursday.

Highlighting doubles is three-time All-American Alex Vlaski, who teamed with Justin Bower for a 6-0, 6-1 win in their first match.

Action continues on at the STC through Sunday. Click here for updated draws and results.

Watch the NCAA Tennis Selection Show Today

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The Husky men's and women's tennis teams will gather in the Nordstrom Tennis Center this afternoon to learn their NCAA Championships fates. The official selection show airs at some point between 2-3 p.m. Pacific time on ESPNNews.

Both teams were ranked in the top-30 in last week's rankings and expect to be selected. It would mark the 16th-consecutive bid for the men's team, one for each of head coach Matt Anger's years with the program. The women will be looking for their third-straight bid under head coach Jill Hultquist.

Last year the men were sent to Austin, Texas where they defeated Texas Tech before falling to Texas in the second round. The women traveled to Los Angeles, defeating San Diego State in the opener and then upsetting USC in the second round to reach the Round of 16 in College Station, Texas where they had their run ended by South Carolina.

Women's Tennis Back Up In Top-30 In Latest Rankings

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The newest set of team and individual rankings were released today by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. With the NCAA Championships coming up next month, rankings are being turned over every week at this point, though that makes for less movement in each edition.

The best news for the UW men and women was the women's team moving back up two spots to No. 29. Many conferences had team tournaments last week and the various results from around the country helped give the Husky women a little bump, even though they were idle.

The Husky men descended one place to 26th, their first time out of the Top-25 since January, although by just one spot.

There was little movement in the singles and doubles rankings for either Husky squad. Denise Dy and Venise Chan both remained at 10th and 15th, respectively, as neither of them played singles at Pac-10s. Dy and Joyce Ardies dropped a few spots to 19th in the doubles rankings but should still be well positioned for an NCAA selection. Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan stayed at 75th on the men's side, while he and Kyle McMorrow dropped a bit to 77th in doubles.

Complete rankings can be found on the ITA website here.

Chan, Dy Featured Together In NW Asian Weekly

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The Northwest Asian Weekly came out to watch UW's top two women's tennis standouts take on California on Senior Day a week and a half ago. Venise Chan, ranked front_tennis1.jpg16th in the nation and a native of Hong Kong, China, played right next to Denise Dy, the No. 9 ranked singles player who grew up in the Philippines though she currently makes her home in San Jose, California.

The story chronicles their starts in the game of tennis and how they wound up competing for Jill Hultquist and the Huskies. It also looks at their contrasting personalities and styles of game.

The match in question was a tough one for both Chan and Dy, as they each fell in lengthy third sets against two more Top-20 players from Cal, but in this case the feature also provides some insight on how they respond to defeats. Both women would follow up with wins over ranked players at Washington State to close the regular season.

Click here to read the feature.

The Daily Wraps Up The Weekend For Tennis

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The UW Daily provides a couple good weekend wrap-ups of men's and women's tennis, which both went against the Bay Area schools last Friday and Saturday.

Taylor Soper writes about the women, who had their closest match ever against Stanford on Friday, and then hosted Senior Day on Saturday against Cal. Washington wasn't able to come out on top, but Coach Hultquist sees the gap closing. Soper also talks with assistant Damon Coupe about Aleksandra Malovic's two wins, and senior Joyce Ardies.

The men lost a heartbreaker on Saturday in a marathon match that had seven sets go to tiebreaks in singles play. Still there were a number of positives such as a big win for freshman Kyle McMorrow over 71st-ranked Chris Konigsfeldt, and a third-straight Pac-10 win for junior Martin Kildahl.

Coach Anger assessed where the team needs to go from here:

"We really played hard on Saturday; that match is a little tough to let go," Anger said. "Yet that is going to be our task this week: We've got to get set. We're going to have a while before we play in the NCAA tournament, so we've got to make some strides."

Here is the full story.

No regrets for UW tennis player Lauren Summers

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The Everett Herald's Scott M. Johnson wrote a great feature story on Washington women's tennis player Lauren Summers, a former "rising star on the alpine skiing circuit."

Summers, a senior from Edmonds, and her Husky teammates finished their home season today against 12th-ranked Cal.  Washington joins the rest of the league at the Pac-10 Championships beginning April 22 in Ojai, Calif.

Check the story out by clicking here.

Chan And Dy Get Some Play In The Times

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Husky tennis standouts Denise Dy and Venise Chan have attracted the attention of the Seattle Times, as the pair were featured in today's edition of the paper.

The story details UW's rise from a 3-17 low point in 2006 back to the Sweet-16 in 2009 and back into the Top-20 of the ITA rankings this year. Of course Husky fansDenise Times.jpg well know that Chan's arrival in 2008 followed by Dy in 2009 have helped get Washington back on course once again. The story sheds some light on what factored into each of them coming to Seattle.

This weekend will be the last chance to watch the top-20 tandem live in person this season, as the Huskies face big-time challenges in 11th-ranked Stanford and 12th-ranked California on Saturday. Come support the Dawgs, and maybe bring a clipping of the article for an autograph or two if you're lucky.

Here is the full story on the Times website.

Huskies Hanging In Top-25

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Both the UW men and women tennis teams maintained their spots in the Top-25 of the national rankings, as the latest poll was released today by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. The men have now been ranked in the Top-25 since February 4, while the women have been in the upper echelon all season long.

Despite each posting wins in their only outings last week, both Husky teams had minimal slides in the team rankings. The men went down one spot to 22nd after a 6-1 win at then-No. 34 Arizona, while the women slipped two spots despite a 5-2 win on the road at unranked Oregon.

Both teams will have a golden opportunity to make a rankings jump this weekend with the postseason right around the corner. But that will take a win over some loaded teams from the Bay Area. The men will travel to face No. 7 Stanford and No. 15 Cal, while the women will be hosting 11th-ranked Stanford and 12th-ranked Cal. Both the men and women face the Cardinal on Friday, then the Bears on Saturday.

Looking at the Pac-10, six of the nine women's teams are in the Top-25, led by 8th-ranked UCLA. For the men, five of the seven teams reside in the Top-25, with 3rd-ranked USC in control of the conference race.

Huskies Make Small Gains In Individual Rankings

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New singles and doubles rankings for men's and women's tennis were churned out this week by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, and three Husky singles players saw slight rises in the polls.

Sophomore Denise Dy and her 20-3 singles record moved up one spot this week to No. 6 in the country. She has been as high as No. 3 this spring.

Junior Venise Chan is still close behind Dy and also moved up one spot to 15th nationally. Last season, Chan won every match at No. 1 singles except for two close losses at Arizona and Arizona State. This season she started off conference play by sweeping the top players for the Arizona schools to exact some revenge.

In the men's rankings, junior Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan stepped up two spots from 56th to 54th, just short of his season-high of 51st. Nedunchezhiyan has four wins in dual play over currently ranked players and will have many more chances when Pac-10 play begins.

Dy and senior Joyce Ardies dropped just out of the Top-10 in the doubles rankings despite not having lost a match all year at No. 1 doubles. They are now ranked 11th and have been as high as sixth.

For the men, UW's No. 3 doubles team of Tobi Obenaus and Alex Rosinski remains ranked at no. 69.

Both teams remained in the Top-20 for the second straight week, with the men coming in at 19th and the women at 20th.

Huskies Continue Up The ITA Rankings

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Both the Husky men's and women's tennis teams hit new season-high marks in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association national rankings this afternoon. Washington is one of just fourteen programs to have both its men's and women's teams in the Top-25.

The women moved up one spot to 18th following wins over Sacramento State and Minnesota last weekend, both of which were ranked. This is the highest ranking for the women since 2005 when they were ranked as high as 8th. Currently, sophomore Denise Dy is ranked fourth in the national singles rankings and junior Venise Chan ranks 14th. Dy and senior Joyce Ardies are the NCAA's 6th-ranked doubles team.

The men jumped two spots this week up to No. 23 coming off a win over then-No. 36 Notre Dame on Saturday. Last week's individual rankings saw junior Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan get back towards the top of the charts as he came in at No. 51. He then upset 28th-ranked Casey Watt of Notre Dame to pick up some more rankings points. Juniors Alex Rosinski and Tobi Obenaus are also ranked 42nd in doubles.

Both UW teams are on the road this week, with the 9-1 men heading to Oregon and the 7-1 women going farther south to California for non-conference duals.

Complete rankings are available here.

Denise and Venise Featured on KING-5 Tonight

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UPDATE: Here is a link to the video on the KING-5 website in cased you missed it live Wednesday night.

The one-two punch of the women's tennis team, 3rd-ranked Denise Dy and 11th-ranked Venise Chan, will be featured on the KING-5 news this evening, starting with the 5 p.m. broadcast.

Sports reporter Chris Egan came out to the Nordstrom for UW's home opener against BYU a couple weeks back, and made a return trip this week to get some extra footage of the two hitting with each other to put the finishing touches on the piece.

The story should also re-run on Northwest Sports Tonight during the 9:30 showing on Northwest Cable News and again at 11 p.m. on KONG.

Huskies Reach Highest Ranking Since '05

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DSC00533.JPGThe Intercollegiate Tennis Association trotted out its latest set of team rankings today, and the Husky women moved up three more spots to 20th in the country. It's the first time the Dawgs have found themselves in the Top-20 since the 2005 season, which also happened to be the last time UW was coming off a Sweet-16 bid, as the 2010 Huskies are.

Washington moved up from 23rd thanks in part to an upset of 16th-ranked South Carolina on Saturday. Washington's lastmatch as a Top-20 team came on April 2, 2005 against Tulane. The Huskies that year wound up ranked 25th in the final poll. It's the first time in the Top-20 for UW under fifth-year head coach Jill Hultquist.

Check out the complete rankings here.

In other news, the Seattle Times sent a photographer out to get a few shots of top-ranked standouts Venise Chan and Denise Dy, for a feature to run in the coming weeks. With two flashbulbs set up DSC00534.JPGat net, Chan and Dy warmed up with each other at the start of practice, each one getting a turn up at net for some closeups.

Husky Stadium Sound Transit Project Underway

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media-013.jpgThe voter-approved Sound Transit project to construct a light rail station outside Husky Stadium jumped quickly into its first phase recently.  A quick look at the E-11 and E-12 parking lots just to the South of Husky Stadium shows a flurry of construction activity. (Click on the photo to the right for a larger version).

GoHuskies.com has setup a great website that provides in-depth information on the project and its six-year impact on Husky athletics.

Also, Chris Fetters of Sports Washington wrote a good explanation of the project and its impact on Husky football parking  in November.

We'll have more updates throughout the spring, leading into next year's 2010 Husky football season.  So, keep tuned to GoHuskies.com.

More on UW's Graduation Rates

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The NCAA released its annual report of graduation success rates among Division I instititions and, once again, the University of Washington showed it ranks second in the Pac-10 and second among all public institutions on the West Coast.  Washington's football federal graduation rate is just two percent shy of the rate for all Division I student-athletes.  For the complete story and links to the NCAA reports, visit this piece posted yesterday on GoHuskies.com.  The Associated Press also wrote a good story on the topic, which you can find here.

A couple of facts that were not widely reported included the graduation success rate (GSR) among football programs in the Pac-10.  Among scholarship athletes, the Huskies rate second in the league in both graduation success rate and the four-year rolling federal graduation rate average.  Below is a chart showing how the UW fares against league rivals.

 

School GSR Fed Rate
Stanford 89 85
Washington 69 61
California 64 57
Washington State 62 58
Arizona State 58 49
USC 58 52
Oregon State 57 43
UCLA 51 40
Oregon 49 45
Arizona 41 35

 

A couple of other key facts that the report revealed about the academic success of various UW sports programs:

 

? The graduation rate for UW scholarship student-athletes who exhausted their eligibility at the school during this reporting period was an impressive 90 percent.  A total of 503 student-athletes fit into this category.
? Six UW sports achieved a GSR of 100 percent:  Men's golf, women's basketball, women's golf, women's soccer, softball and women's tennis.
? 10 of the 18 sports calculated (men's crew is not a NCAA sport and track/cross country are counted as one sport. The discontinued swimming program is also included), achieved a GSR of 90 percent or better.

Chan, Dy Both Among Top-Eight Seeds At National Indoors

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Husky women's tennis stars Venise Chan and Denise Dy learned today that they are both among the eight seeded singles players featured in this week's ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships. Chan and Dy leave Tuesday to head for Yale University and the Cullman-Heyman Tennis Center.

The tournament runs from this Thursday through Sunday and features just 32 entrants, the smallest field of the three national individual championships in college tennis. This is the first time ever that UW has qualified two individuals.

Dy, a sophomore coming off a huge win at the ITA Northwest Regional Championships, is the tourney's No. 7 seed, and Chan, a junior who reached the semifinals at the ITA All-American Championships last month, is right behind her as the No. 8 seed.

Washington is the only school with two seeded players, and one of just four schools with multiple entrants.

Dress Rehearsal

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wtennis2.jpgThe women's tennis team celebrated halloween during practice, and even the coaches got in on the action. Coach Jill Hultquist was virtually unrecognizable in her blonde wig and bright green sunglasses...until she entered the court and started coaching!
 
The team out-did themselves in their second annual costumed practice with everyone participating. And yes, they actually practiced in full costume! The strategy session was quite lively as it was animals vs. angels on one court and a pirate against Cindy Lou Who (Dr. Seuss) on another.
There were a few tricks (Denise Dy dressed up as a cow complete with a squirting udder) and some treats as the ladies listened to music during practice and finished practice off with caramel apple pops!
Denise and Venise Chan will head to Yale next week to compete in the ITA National Championship while the rest of the team heads to San Diego to compete in the SDSU Fall Classic to wrap up the fall season. 

Husky Athletics Honors Scholarship Donors

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Recently, Washington Husky athletic department officials and student-athletes showed their appreciation to its scholarship donors at its annual luncheon in the Don James Center.  Husky student-athletes Victor Aiyewa and Danielle Lawrie presented thanks to the benefactors on behalf of all of the UW's scholarship student-athletes. 

Check out this great photo gallery from the event.

Women's soccer coach Lesle Gallimore gave a passionate speech that outlined the tremendous responsibility each coach accepts as they makes decisions on who and when to award athletic scholarships.

"As a coach I am entrusted with the task of awarding scholarships to young women whom my staff and I determine are worthy of your generosity," said Gallimore. "This is a responsibility that I do not take lightly. I have done nothing for the dollars that I am doling out. It is not my hard work that has made these scholarships possible and yet it is my duty to select people that will live up to their commitment of striving for athletic and academic excellence.

Former Dawg Slovic Makes Final Eight At University Games

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2007_AlexSlovic_0011.jpgFormer Husky All-American Alex Slovic has advanced to the quarterfinals of the World University Games men's tennis tourney currently being contested in Belgrade, Serbia. Slovic is the fourth seed in the draw and represents the host nation as he hails from Pancevo, just 15 kilometers outside of Belgrade.

Slovic, who is the all-time winningest Husky with 184 combined singles and doubles wins, will face the No. 7-seed, Jiri Skoloudik of the Czech Republic in the quarters.

Slovic has not dropped a set so far in three wins. In the third round he bageled Mori Valter of Brazil, 6-0, 6-0, and yesterday defeated Australia's Jon Smith, 6-4, 6-2. In his first match he had to face former Husky teammate Klaus Jank of Germany. The two played together in 2006 when UW last made the NCAA Round of 16. Slovic scored the 6-4, 6-4 win.

Also still competing is current Husky junior-to-be Vanja Radunovic. The native of Montenegro is in the quarterfinals of the consolation singles draw. Radunovic dominated her first consolation match, 6-0, 6-0, then moved into the quarters via a walkover.

Venise Chan Makes Quarters Of Pro Tourney In China

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Top Husky women's tennis player Venise Chan just wrapped up a quarterfinal run in a pro tourney near her Hong Kong home this week, which included an upset of the tournament's No. 1 seed.

Chan, a junior-to-be who finished the 2009 season ranked 25th in the NCAA, went 2-1 this week in a 10,000 dollar level tourney in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China. In the first round she defeated Nan-Nan Zhang, 7-5, 6-4. Next she faced top-seeded Seiko Okamoto, a 31-year-old pro who has been ranked in the top-200 in both singles and doubles in her career. Chan earned a 6-2, 6-3 win over the veteran.

In Thursday's quarterfinal, Chan faced a 15-year-old qualifier who has gone undefeated in junior play this year. Haochen Tang overcame Chan, 6-4, 6-2 to reach the semis.

Former Husky Kendrick Takes Center Stage At Wimbledon

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Former Washington All-American tennis player Robert Kendrick was on the grandest stage in tennis today, as he faced third-seeded Scotsman Andy Murray on Centre Court at Wimbledon in the first round. The match was televised live this afternoon on ESPN2.

Murray, the current favorite son of the British sports public, was pressured throughout by Kendrick, who played at UW from 1998-99. Murray pulled out the first set, 7-5, then the second headed into a tiebreak. From 3-3, Kendrick won four straight points to take the tiebreak and level the match, with his booming serves and forehand working well on the grass.

The third-seed stepped up in the next two sets, earning a break of serve in each set. In both instances, Kendrick had break chances late to get back on serve, but Murray held on for a 7-5, 6-7, 6-3, 6-4 win.

Kendrick, currently ranked 76th in the world at 29 yearsold, was making the fourth Wimbledon main draw appearance of his career. Today's match recalled Kendrick's 2006 appearance, when he took the first two sets off of then-No. 2 Rafael Nadal in the second round before Nadal fought back to win in five drama-filled sets. Nadal went on to make his first final that year.

In other Husky tennis news, several Dawgs competed in the Seattle City Open this past week at the Amy Yee . In the men's draw, junior Derek Drabble reached the final before losing to top-seeded Angelo Niculescu, 7-6, 6-2. Skyler Tateishi, having just finished his sophomore year, also was beaten by Niculescu in the quarterfinals. In doubles, Drabble and Tateishi beat the second and third seeds to reach the final, but were denied by Niculescu and Ryan Pang, 7-5, 3-6, 6-3.

On the women's side, sophomore Ashley Anderson reached the final as the top seed, but fell 6-1, 4-6, 6-2 to Angela Chen. Former Husky Katherine Costain (1996-97) also made the quarterfinals. The women's doubles title was won easily by two more Husky alums. Three-time All-American Dea Sumantri (2002-05) and Peggy Wu (1997-00) lost just two games in taking the title. Though their careers never overlapped, Sumantri ranks third on UW's career doubles wins list with 83 and Wu is fourth with 74.

Three Huskies Named Academic All-District!

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Swimmer Yonatan Cohen was named first team Academic All-District and will move on to the national ballot for the At-Large ESPN Academic All-America team.

Cohen boasts a 3.97 cumulative GPA in math and physics.  He swam the second-fastest 100 breast and third-fastest 200 breast times in school history at the 2009 Pac-10 championship.  Cohen also helped set the school record in the 400 medley at the 2009 NCAA championship.

Venise Chan, who ended her sophomore season yesterday in the NCAA tennis singles tournament opener, and junior coxswain Isabelle Woodward, who will cox the second varsity eight in next week's NCAA rowing championship, were both named third team Academic All District VIII.

Chan, a first-team All-Pac-10 pick, ended her season with a 28-7 record at No. 1 singles.  A business major, Chan carries a 3.74 cumulative GPA. 

Woodward has a 3.75 cumulative GPA and majors in international business.  She also studies Arabic and plans to work in the Middle East after graduation.

Congrats to all three Huskies honored Thursday by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA)!

Huskies In The NCAA's This Weekend

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Three Husky teams are in the midst of NCAA Tournament action today: Men's Golf, Women's Tennis and Softball.

The golf team is in day two of action from the NCAA Central Regional in Bowling Green, Ky. The Huskies entered the day with a 10-stroke lead over the field and with Nick Taylor in first place. The teams were called off the course at 11:08 PT due to lightning, so we'll have to hang tight to see when the golfers get back on the course.

The women's tennis team took the court against South Carolina at about 11 am PT and are currently battling the Gamecocks in Texas. Fans can follow the matches live online, as Texas A&M is providing video and live stats.

Heather Tarr's softball crew is scheduled for a first pitch at 2 pm (PT) against Sacred Heart. Fans can follow the games.

Go Dawgs!!!

UW Tennis Departs For Texas

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The Washington women's tennis team departed campus this morning for College Station, Texas and its NCAA Tournament quarterfinal match against South Carolina. The Husky athletes and coaches were excited to see approximately 50 athletic department coaches and staffers on hand for a hearty send-off! The group cheered, clapped and sang "Bow Down To Washington" and each of the players had a big smile as they headed-off to the airport.

Washington faces South Carolina, the only other unseeded team remaining in the bracket, Friday at 10 a.m. (Pacific). The winner of that match will face either Florida or Georgia in the NCAA Quarterfinals on Sunday. 

The most extensive coverage of the Huskies can be found on GoHuskies.com right here and to watch a video interview with Jill Hultquist and Aleksandra Malovic, click here!

Go Dawgs!

What a great year for Husky sports teams!  An incredible 15 of the 18 sports that have completed its regular season participated in NCAA postseason championships.  Washington is ranked among the top-10 in the Learfield Sports Director's Cup and three teams won Pac-10 titles!

Last weekend, the women's tennis team kept its national title hopes alive with a gutsy 4-3 upset victory at USC in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Huskies now travel to College Station, Texas for the NCAA round of 16 match against South Carolina. The winner faces either Georgia or South Carolina in the quarterfinals.

The softball team clinched second place in the Pac-10 with a thumping of Cal in its regular-season finale, then found it it would be the No. 3 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Women's golf finished just five strokes from advancing to the NCAA Championship round after finishing 10th at the NCAA Central Regionals in Columbus, Ohio. A great accomplishment from a team that did not finish as well as it would have liked at the Pac-10 championships.

Men's tennis staged one of the most incredible comebacks ever in its first-round NCAA victory over Texas Tech, but didn't have enough left in the tank on the road Texas in the second round.

The baseball team took two of three games against #25 Oregon State and Husky freshman Jeremy Taiwo placed third at the Pac-10 Multi-Event Championships.

With just more than a month left in the college sports season, there are plenty of chances for Husky greatness ahead. Keep an eye on GoHuskies.com and cheer on the Dawgs!

Washington Dawg Blawg
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