BERKELEY, Calif. – The 40th-ranked LSU women’s tennis team is set to face No. 24 Pepperdine on Friday at noon CT in the Hellman Tennis Complex for the first round of the NCAA Division I Women’s Tennis Tournament.
This is the first time LSU (14-13) has received a berth in the NCAA Tournament while under second-year head coach Julia S. Sell.
“I know Pepperdine’s coach is a really good coach,” said Sell. “He’s been there a long time and they’ve had a good year. They won their conference; they’ve proved themselves; they have a lot of confidence; they are just a high quality team. They are prepared for this tournament.”
Pepperdine (18-4) currently holds a 5-1 series lead over the Lady Tigers. The two teams last met on Feb. 4, 2008, where LSU ultimately dropped a 4-3 decision to the Wave.
LSU is led by No. 74 Joana Vale Costa, an All-SEC Second Team and All-SEC Freshman Team member who holds an 11-8 record, including a 10-7 record at the No. 1 spot.
“It’s going to be a much faster surface and the ball moves faster through the air there, so the game will be faster,” said Sell. “We definitely need to get out there and get used to the courts because that will be a huge change for us. We don’t see a lot of that in the SEC, but it will be outside and sunny and our girls always play better when it is warm.”
The match between LSU and Pepperdine will be the first of the day, with host and 6th-ranked California and Fairleigh Dickinson playing at 3 p.m. The winner of the LSU-Pepperdine match will play the winner of the California-Fairleigh Dickinson match on Saturday at 2 p.m.
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NCAA First and Second Rounds
(Hellman Tennis Complex, Berkeley, California)
Friday, May 9
NCAA First Round
No. 24 Pepperdine (18-4) vs. No. 40 LSU (14-13), noon CT
No. 6 California (18-4) vs. Fairleigh Dickinson (13-4), 3 p.m.
Saturday, May 10
NCAA Second Round
No. 6 California/Fairleigh Dickenson winner vs. No. 24 Pepperdine/No. 40 LSU winner, 2 p.m.
Ticket Information: $10 for adults, $5 for students/youth/seniors; cash only, sold day of event only.