Card Squeaks Past Cal Again

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For Stanford, its 5-4 victory over the Cal women's tennis team yesterday was yet another notch in the Cardinal's 38-game winning streak.

But for the Bears, the narrow loss was the third time the squad has had to weather a blow from the current Pac-10 leader.

The main difference setting yesterday's loss apart from Cal's prior two defeats was that the Bears actually had a chance at toppling the Stanford powerhouse.

"We got beaten pretty badly earlier in the season by Stanford and it was obvious that we needed to work on our weapons going into the match," Cal tennis player Amy Jensen said. "Today I think what helped us keep it close was that we changed our objective from winning to playing good tennis."

In the previous matchups between Cal (14-5, 3-1 in the Pac-10) and the Card, Stanford (21-0, 4-0) wasted no time finishing off the Bears - the Cardinal swept Cal, 8-0, in the finals of the ITA Team Indoor Championships in February and, 6-0, in Berkeley later that month.

Cal prevented a third sweep by Stanford with key performances by Amy Jensen and Karoline Borgersen in singles play and solid showings by the double teams of Claire Curran and Jensen and Jenny Lee and Emeka Mayes.

Stanford jumped to an early lead in singles play by winning all but two matches.

On the No. 1 and No. 3 courts, Anita Kurimay and Curran faced off against two top-10 players, Marissa Irvin and Lauren Kalvaria.

"It's always tough to face a team that is unbeaten and boasts really good players that have high rankings," Jensen said. "But, every time you walk out on the court you know that there's the possibility that you (get swept) - that's the whole idea of competition I guess."

No. 3 Irvin swept No. 34 Kurimay, 6-1, 6-3, while No. 7 Kalvaria took care of No. 60 Curran, 6-4, 6-1.

Stanford continued its dominant singles play, claiming the No. 5 and No. 6 courts as well. Christina Fusano fell to the Card's Jennifer Heiser, 6-2, 6-1 and No. 40 Keiko Tokuda swept Morisa Yang, 6-3, 6-1.

Jensen's 6-7, 6-2, 6-0 defeat of Teryn Ashley on the No. 2 court and Borgersen's 6-0, 0-6, 6-1 victory over Stanford's Gabriela Lastra on the No. 4 court kept the Bears in the running heading into doubles play.

"It's nice to be able to win your match," Jensen said. "But, I think on all the courts, even the ones that didn't win, it was obvious that we were bringing it back to basics, our game against theirs."

The tandem of Curran and Jensen managed to knock off the Card's Kalvaria and Lastra, 8-5, on the No. 2 court to narrow Stanford's lead to 4-3.

Following suit, Cal's Lee and Mayes defeated Tokuda and Heiser, 8-6, on the third court tying up the match at four.

But, the Bears came just short of sweeping doubles and earning the win when the No. 5 duo of Ashley and Irvin clinched the match in an 8-4 victory over No. 6 Kurimay and Borgersen on the No. 1 court.

"Even though we didn't manage to pull out a win today, I think we were playing, for a big part, out of pride - pride for the school, for the program and for how hard we have worked as players to improve," Jensen said. "I think once you do that, no matter what the outcome, the wins and losses take care of themselves."


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