LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- One day after scoring a hard-fought win over Utah to advance, the Saint Mary's women's tennis team fell 4-0 to No. 6-ranked USC in the finale of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend at Marks Tennis Center.
No. 37 Saint Mary's leaves Los Angeles with a 1-1 overall record. USC improves to 2-0 and with the win advances to the ITA National Indoor Tournament in Virginia next month.
The Trojans earned the early advantage Saturday thanks to a strong showing in doubles. The Gaels played tough at No. 3, with Jade Frampton and Elizabeth Searl tied at 5-all with Zoe Katz and Gabriella DeSimone but the match was halted when USC clinched the point with a win at No. 1.
Saint Mary's fared much better in singles, though the final score did not reflect it. The premier matchup of the day took place at No. 1 singles, where No. 7 Jenny Jullien squared off with preseason No. 1 Sabrina Santamaria. Jullien won the first set 6-4 and trailed 2-4 in the second when the match was halted.
At No. 2, Jamie Pawid also took the first set in her match, earning a 6-3 advantage against Zoe Scandalis. The two were knotted at 2-all when the match was stopped. The Gaels also led at No. 5, with Catherine Leduc winning the first set 7-5 against Ellie Yates before also seeing her match stopped early.
USC took the match thanks to straight-sets wins at No. 3, 4 and 6. Katz clinched the Trojans' win with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Frampton at No. 6.
This weekend's matches against No. 58 Utah and the Trojans will only serve as the first course for a non-conference schedule laden with ranked teams. Next up for Saint Mary's is the home opener against No. 56 Fresno State on Feb. 2. That match is set for an 11 a.m. start.