NCAA Women's Semifinal Results

May 21, 2012

WOMEN: #1 UCLA (26-2) def. #5 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (24-4), 4-3 - Henry Feild Stadium
Head Coaches: Stella Sampras Webster (UCLA) and Richard Gallien (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA)

Doubles (Order of finish: 1,2)  
1.  #6 Robin Anderson/Skylar Morton (UCLA) def. #3 Kaitlyn Christian/Sabrina Santamaria (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 8-3
2.  #9 Courtney Dolehide/Pamela Montez (UCLA) def. #49 Valeria Pulido/Zoe Scandalis (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 8-4
3.  McCall Jones/Carling Seguso (UCLA) vs. #75 Danielle Lao/Alison Ramos (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 5-6, unfinished

Singles (Order of finish: 4,5,3,6,1,2*) 
1.  #4 Robin Anderson (UCLA) def. #14 Zoe Scandalis (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 6-7(5), 6-4, 6-2
2.  #98 McCall Jones (UCLA) def. #19 Danielle Lao (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 6-4, 2-6, 6-2
3.  #26 Sabrina Santamaria (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #73 Pamela Montez (UCLA), 7-5, 2-6, 6-4
4.  #124 Skylar Morton (UCLA) def. #89 Kaitlyn Christian (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 6-4, 7-5
5.  Gabriella DeSimone (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #119 Chanelle Van Nguyen (UCLA), 0-6, 6-2, 6-4
6.  Valeria Pulido (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #114 Kaitlin Ray (UCLA), 7-5, 3-6, 6-1


UCLA Head Coach Stella Sampras Webster
“We knew going in it was a match that was going to be a battle, and it was. It could’ve gone either way. We did a great job in doubles coming out strong and having good starts and getting that doubles point which was really important to us. Going into the singles, we knew we had to play three more matches. I’m really proud of my team. They stayed within themselves. And were able to battle through this. Like I said, it could’ve gone either way. It was really hot out there, and I know that it was affecting some players. We were fortunate that we were able to finish those matches and get those points and now have a chance to win a championship. It was a well fought match.  I have a lot of respect for Rich Gallien and his program. We just came out ahead. WE executed just a little bit better.

On senior McCall Jones...
“McCall has the tendency to play really well here. Last year she stepped up for us when we played at Stanford. And McCall has struggled against Danielle Lao. Today, McCall just loves the big moments, and she really embraced it today and was able to outlast Danielle. Danielle is a tough competitor. McCall is great shape and he was able to maintain that high level. McCall has won a lot of matches for us, but I’m so happy and proud of her to be able to clinch a match against USC. The team tournament is what its all about. McCall thrives on that and just did a great job.”

On playing Florida...
“We haven’t played them all year. I know they’re a great team. We’re going to just try to prepare the team the best we can to get them ready for tomorrow. We want to take it. We’re not just happy to be in the finals. We want to get eveybody’s mindset right. Were going to have tot fight very hard to beat Florida. They’re used to this kind of weather. We’re excited. I think this team likes these big moments. I think they’re going to thrive on it.”

UCLA’s McCall Jones
On Danielle getting tired...
“I think it got a little tight and she knew it was going to come down to her. For me it was the opposite affect. I played my better tennis when I knew it was going to come down to me. I started playing there way I wanted to play. I looked at the scoreboard, and I told myself  had to do it. I knew it was going to come down to me. I think it helped me.”

On playing familiar teams...
“When you play someone so often, Stella know how to coach again them, they know how to coach against her. It comes down to who wants it more. I honestly think our team wanted it more. I think that’s why we came out on top. We took advantage of the moment.”

UCLA’s Skylar Morton
On playing familiar teams...
“It’s good because I know how to play her, but she also knows how to play me. We just have to battle and see who is going to come out and fight harder.”

USC’s Head Coach Richard Gallien
“It was a great match and they deserved to win. They played very tough and yet I couldn’t be more proud of our team because we were down a lot of the day. We had a slight lead but we got discouraged after the doubles and the beginning of some of the singles and the day could have finished about two hours ago. The girls did not give up and they fought to the bitter end. There is no other explaining that it is certainly painful to be on the wrong end, but my thoughts go firstly to respect and congratulate them, but more importantly to the hearts and souls of my kids so they aren’t hurting to badly.”

On Lao’s match...
“I think at this stage it is wiser to tip your hat to the UCLA girl and that’s that.”

On rooting in championship match...
“I’ve learned that rooting does no good. I hope they have a nice match but that’s their business. We are going to go practice and get ready for the individual tournament.”

USC’s Zoe Scandalis
On looking at scoreboard...
“I think the best thing would probably be not to, but I think human nature is that I am always looking at that board and maybe that’s something that I need to work on. I was looking at that too much and I will work on that.”

USC’s Alison Ramos
On looking at scoreboard..
“In doubles, I paid a lot more attention to the scoreboard than usuall. Usually I am so focused on my court and take care of work on my court. But it was hard with the Bruin crowd going and hearing ‘Game Bruin’ and it was distracting and definitely affected my play in doubles.”


WOMEN: #2 FLORIDA (26-1) def. #3 DUKE (29-3), 4-3 - McWhorter Courts
Head Coaches: Roland Thornqvist (FLORIDA) and Jamie Ashworth (DUKE)

Doubles (Order of finish: 1,3,2) 
1.  #1 Sofie Oyen/Allie Will (FLORIDA) def. #21 Mary Clayton/Ester Goldfeld (DUKE), 8-3
2.  #22 Lauren Embree/Joanna Mather (FLORIDA) vs. #17 Beatrice Capra/Rachel Kahan (DUKE), 9-8(1)
3.  Hanna Mar/Monica Gorny (DUKE) def. Alex Cercone/Caroline Hitimana (FLORIDA), 8-4

Singles (Order of finish:2,3,6,1,4,5*) 
1.  #2 Beatrice Capra (DUKE) def. #1 Allie Will (FLORIDA), 6-4, 6-4 
2.  #9 Lauren Embree (FLORIDA) def. #110 Ester Goldfeld (DUKE), 6-4, 6-1
3.  #21 Joanna Mather (FLORIDA) def. #59 Hanna Mar (DUKE), 2-6, 6-2 6-0
4.  #85 Rachel Kahan (DUKE) def. #61 Sofie Oyen (FLORIDA), 6-3, 5-7, 6-2
5.  #79 Alex Cercone (FLORIDA) vs. #66 Mary Clayton (DUKE), 5-7, 6-4, 6-3
6.  #97 Monica Turewicz (DUKE) def. Olivia Janowicz (FLORIDA), 6-1, 4-6, 6-3

Florida Head Coach Roland Thrornqvist
“I don’t know how we won that match. We found a way on doubles. I like the way we have played at the end of the double matches so far. Starting at the SEC tournament and through this tournament, we’ve been very good at the end of doubles making the right decisions. Today was no different. That was the difference. In retrospect, we needed it.”

“Duke is one heck of a team. The first hour in singles, they were beating us to death, I thought it got to us. I was really concerned that we were going to wear down. Somehow we found a way. Somehow we found a way to get one of (four and five). I was really proud of our players. WE were really down and out, but found a way to get back in the match.”

On Alex Cercone...
“This is her sophomore year, and so far she has a clean sheet in this event. Alex had some ups and downs in her play, but somehow, when you come to this event, she is a different player. Today she got outplayed and found a way to win the second. I didn’t see the middle part of the third set, but she was just a surgeon at the end. She put the ball where she wanted it to be at the end.”

On playing an unfamiliar opponent...
“If this was any other match, I think maybe you would feel fatigued, but were playing for a national championship. If you can walk, you play. Tomorrow is going to be about quality, it’s not going to be about fitness at the beginning we’re going to have to be executing well. I think we’ll be ready.”

On practicing in warmer weather than Duke...
“I think that’s a great question. I t looked to me that duke was very fit. They made us run. I thought they wore us down much more so that vice versa. If it was wamer in north Carolina and they practiced in the hear, maybe they did because they looked prepared. That’s what we did.”

Florida’s Lauren Embree
On being ready for tomorrow...
“We’re really excited about tomorrow and to play UCLA because we haven’t played them. We know they’re a really tough team and they’ll give everything they have. I’m just really excited for tomorrow.”

Florida’s Joanna Mather
On having more experience...
“I think experience is a part of it. Even the freshman coming in have played matches, though. It is a new atmosphere. But our freshman last year handled it amazingly. I don’t think we can look at it like they have freshman and think we have a leg up on them. The amount of matches we’ve played, we know if we fight hard, we have a chance in every match we play.”

Duke Head Coach Jamie Ashworth
Thoughts on match...
“It was a great match. Every court was a battle. No.5 and 6 singles went to three sets and doubles comes down to a breaker. I couldn’t be happier with how we competed. I thought that especially because we lost to them 4-0 earlier in the season and we wanted this opportunity. This group of girls we had on the courts today completely fought their butts off for everything. That’s what we talked about before the match, was making Florida earn every point. I felt the longer we could make the match go the better off we could be. I think we did that. I couldn’t ask for anything more out of the group. Our doubles was the best it’s been since we’ve been in Athens. Our singles, they had to beat us and they had to come up with shots to beat us and on some courts they were able to do that. They are a great team. The obviously have everybody back from a team that won it a year ago. If you are going take out a team like that, you have to knock out the champion. You’re not going to win any decisions. We weren’t able to get that last one there, but I thought they did a good job. I thought we pushed them more than they’ve been pushed in a while and gave ourselves a chance. We talked about at the beginning of the week with our team  that we are one of sixteen team s that has a chance, and one of eight teams that had a chance and one of four teams that had a chance. I think in that match we gave ourselves a chance and that is all we can ask for.”

On responding to losing doubles point..
“I think it tells you a lot about their character. They don’t let that get us down. They have full belief that we can win six singles matches and that’s what we talked about. Unfortunately it catches up with you, and it caught up a little bit with us today. To have to come out and win four singles matches against a team like Florida is really hard to do. I would question the last time they lost four singles matches in a match. Against Georgia we were able to do it, Virginia able to do it, but the further you go and obviously the tougher the teams and it caught up with us today. Against better teams like Florida you may only get one or two chances in a game, one or two chances in doubles and we didn’t take advantage of those, and we had them. We gave ourselves an opportunity when we came here and that’s all we wanted.”

Duke’s Beatrice Capra
On match...
“ Whoever you play at No. 1 is going to tough and really whoever you play here is going to be tough match. I knew going in that it was going to be a grind with Allie (Will). I have played her a couple of times and I knew that she doesn’t give you any free points. It was definitely a long match and very physical. I thought a good job of staying aggressive and into the court. It’s much different when you are playing by yourself and playing for your team. I just wanted to win so badly for my team today because I knew we had a really good chance. I know how hard everyone has worked and I just loved this team so much and I am really proud of the way the team fought today.”


MEN: #1 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (32-1) def. #4 UCLA (26-4), 4-1 - Henry Feild Stadium
Head Coaches: Peter Smith (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) and Billy Martin (UCLA)

Doubles (Order of finish: 3,1,2) 
1.  #2 Steve Johnson/Roberto Quiroz (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #44 Alex Brigham/Adrien Puget (UCLA), 8-6
2.  #35 Daniel Nguyen/Ray Sarmiento (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #85 Nick Meister/Dennis Novikov (UCLA), 9-8(6)
3.  Marcos Giron/Warren Hardie (UCLA) def. Emilio Gomez/Yannick Hanfmann (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 8-4

Singles (Order of finish: 1,2,4,3*) 
1.  #1 Steve Johnson (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #62 Clay Thompson (UCLA), 6-1, 6-1
2.  #25 Ray Sarmiento (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. #16 Nick Meister (UCLA), 6-1, 6-1
3.  #21 Daniel Nguyen (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) def. Dennis Novikov (UCLA), 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(3)
4.  #84 Marcos Giron (UCLA) def. #57 Emilio Gomez (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA), 6-3, 6-4
5.  #51 Yannick Hanfmann (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) vs. #46 Adrien Puget (UCLA), 3-6, 1-3, unfinished
6.  Roberto Quiroz (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA) vs. Dennis Mkrtchian (UCLA), 2-3, unfinished


USC Head Coach Peter Smith
“The people got their money’s worth. That was a long evening and it was an amazing match. UCLA showed a lot of heart. We had two of our guys come out and play incredible tennis (Stevie and Ray). And we had one guy play incredibly clutch in (Daniel Nguyen). It was pretty special.”

On dealing with a delay/move this far into the postseason...
“No, but I saw it about 20 years ago. If you love college tennis, there’s nothing more than you could’ve loved that. Two teams playing their hearts out in the semifinals of the NCAA’s with everything on the line. That’s about as special as it gets.”

 “I think it helped the rhythm. WE came out here and these guys just played lights out. That’s a great effort.”

 On playing indoors...
“There’s not an indoor court in southern California, but I guess it’s not hurting us. I think it can fit into our game plans a lot. With those three guys, it certainly did.”

On the quick turnaround...
“We might have legs that are tired, we might have arms that are tired, we might have minds that are tired, but I can tell you one thing – the USC Trojans hearts are not tired. We’ll be there. We’ll be ready to go.”

USC’s Steve Johnson
“I played Clay a few times in the past. I knew I had a pretty good game for him. He has a great serve, but I feel like my returns are very capable. I showed that today. I was able to make him work for every point. That worked for my advantage.”

On weather delay...
“I was confused because there was no rain. But they said there was lightening and thunder. I was begging Peter to play the thing indoors. We were playing well. We didn’t want to sit out and let them play indoors. It was definitely fun for me.”

On watching Daniel Nguyen play in the tiebreaker...
“There’s a little bit in me that wishes I was down there to serve it out because its on my shoulders, but I know Daniel is going to come through in the clutch. In the tiebreaker, he played seven great points.”

On possible rematch with Virginia...
“That would be fun. I’m pretty good buddies with most of those guys. We’re all friends off the court, but on the court we want to beat each other. I think it’ll be special. But I’m kind of hoping they play for another 3-4 hours. Let them battle each other down. We’re glad we’re through. Either way we’ll be ready to go.”

On playing rival UCLA in the semifinals...
“It’s crazy to fly 2,000 miles to play a school that’s 15 minutes from you. To have us and the women play today was pretty special with the band and everything. With our crowd and their crowd, the rivalry doesn’t get much bigger. Playing those guys is also special. I’m glad we ended the year on a high note against them.”

UCLA Head Coach Billy Martin
Thoughts on match...
“I thought we were in it from beginning to end. Doubles was real close; felt we had a chance to win the doubles there in the tiebreaker for that last doubles match. I don’t think it helped us the format that we had as far as starting with one and two. We probably got off to the worst starts in those, and Stevie (Johnson) at one isn’t one we were expecting to win. So right off the bat we were down 3-0, but we win at No. 4. When we’ve played them before our strength has been on three through six. We won four, were up a set and a break at five and I feel like we had a good chance at No. 6. Dennis (Novikov) has a great match with Daniel Nguyen, certainly right there knocking on the door to possibly win the match. No disgrace or anything, we played a great match. We know they are a great team and we don’t expect to beat them on every occasion but we think we have a chance to battle with them. It’s disappointing, but im still really proud of the team and we had a great year, so we can’t be too dishearted.”

UCLA’s Dennis Novikov
On tiebreaker...
“Definitely felt like I was in it the whole match and had chances. He just played good points on those chances. Sometimes I may not have been aggressive enough, but I had chances but didn’t take them today.”

On atmosphere...
“Its always amazing playing aginast USC in front of a great crowd. It’s the rivalry of USC versus UCLA. I think everyone was extremely excited coming in for that fact and its every athlete’s dream to play their rival on the biggest atmosphere. I think it was great and it is tough for us that it didn’t end our way but its how it goes in sports at times.”


MEN: #3 VIRGINIA (29-1) def. #7 PEPPERDINE (27-7), 4-1 - McWhorter Courts
Head Coaches: Brian Boland (VIRGINIA) and Adam Steinberg (PEPPERDINE)
Doubles (Order of finish: 2,3)  
1.  #5 Drew Courtney/Jarmere Jenkins (VIRGINIA) vs. #15 Alex Llompart/Finn Tearney (PEPPERDINE), 8-7, unfinished
2.  Julen Uriguen/Justin Shane (VIRGINIA) def. Sebastian Fanselow/Jenson Turner (PEPPERDINE), 8-4
3.  Alex Domijan/Mitchell Frank (VIRGINIA) def. Hugh Clarke/David Sofaer (PEPPERDINE), 8-4

Singles (Order of finish:  2,1,3,4*) 
1.  #8 Sebastian Fanselow (PEPPERDINE) def. #4 Jarmere Jenkins (VIRGINIA), 6-4, 4-6, 6-4
2.  #39 Alex Domijan (VIRGINIA) def. #30 Finn Tearney (PEPPERDINE), 6-3, 3-6, 6-1
3.  #2 Mitchell Frank (VIRGINIA) def. Alex Llompart (PEPPERDINE), 7-6(3), 6-2 
4.  Drew Courtney (VIRGINIA) def. #109 Mousheg Hovhannisyan (PEPPERDINE), 7-6(3), 6-2
5.  #82 Justin Shane (VIRGINIA) vs. Hugh Clarke (PEPPERDINE), 4-5, unfinished
6.  Julen Uriguen (VIRGINIA) vs. Jenson Turner (PEPPERDINE), 6-2, 3-3, unfinished


Virginia Head Coach Brian Boland
“It was a good discomfort for both teams. Great credit to Pepperdine, though. It was a great match. Certainly, we were well tested. Pepperdine ahs a great team and I was pleased with how the guys fought from start to finish.”

On playing indoors tomorrow...
“Regardless of where we have to play, it doesn’t matter. We’re looking forward to playing for a national championship tomorrow. Whatever the circumstances are, we’ll leave it all on the court.”

On moving indoors...
“We are a team that has a great deal of discipline. We just get out there and give it our best. They adjusted well and worked hard throughout the match. There was never a letdown. Both teams fought hard. It was a great match. We’re looking forward for a chance at a national championship tomorrow.”

On if Steve Johnson can be beat....
“Sure. That’s why you play the game. We have a lot of respect for Southern California. They have a great team. Were long forward to playing the tomorrow.”

On the late ending...
“We need to get them back to hotel, get some food in their bodies, do what we need to do and get to sleep. It wasn’t a huge difference (between the end times of the two matches), so I don’t think there will be a huge difference. UCLA pushed them hard as well. I compliment the NCAA on how they handled this. I thought it was fair for all the teams involved. It’s even and we go on to play hard tomorrow. “

Pepperdine Head Coach Adam Steinberg
“I want to congratulate Virginia. They have a great team. They were just too tough for us. It wasn’t coming indoors, they just played better than us tonight. All credit goes to them. It should be a great final tomorrow.”

“I don’t even have words for what my team has done this year and what they have overcome. They did it the right way, the Pepperdine way. I’m more than proud. I can’t even thank them enough for the ride they have taken me on this year. Its been so much fun. I want to congratulate my team as well. They had an amazing tournament.

On not being able to get the doubles point...
“It was huge for us. They’re just so deep. Every team is just so deep, but Virginia especially. It’s one after another. For my team, it helps them believe. We still felt great. We still felt we had a great chance. College tennis is so deep now against any team you play, the doubles point is huge.”

On effect of emotional win against Georgia Sunday...
“Not really. The guys didn’t want the year to end. I don’t think so. In a month maybe ill think differently. The attitude before the match was like it always is. I felt the energy from the team this afternoon. They really wanted to play great tonight. It’s four matches in five days. WE worked on our conditioning all year. They were prepared for it. No excuses.”

Final thoughts of NCAA tournament...
“It was incredible. I just told them that. It’s a dream. It should be a dream for every young tennis player all of the world to come play in this final 16 wherever itisi. But it’s special here in Athens. It has a special place in my heart here. I’ve come to this tournament since I was a kid watching it. I played here as a college player. It was a dream come true last night, but most importantly for my guys that they have a memory of a lifetime now. There’s no better tennis venue in the United States than right here in Athens."



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