first_imgAs for the Women of Troy, their season started with three straight wins, only to lose their most recent matchup against Southern Methodist University. The team was scheduled to play the Texas A&M Aggies last Sunday, but the competition was canceled due to inclement weather. The Trojans are now preparing to go on the road to play another non-conference team,  UC Santa Barbara. Last Saturday, USC played a tight match against the Mustangs, splitting singles 3-3. The Mustangs left with the win after coming out on top in both of their doubles matches. The Trojans currently sit with an overall record of 3-1 in the middle of the Pac-12. The men hope to rebound this weekend at the ITA National Indoor Championship in Chicago. After dropping their last three matches to No. 9 Stanford, No. 1 Ohio State and Cal, the Trojans will face the fourth-ranked Florida Gators. Following the tournament, USC will return home Feb. 22 to take on crosstown rival No. 6 UCLA. One player to keep an eye on for the Gauchos is senior Stephanie Yamada. Yamada, who was recently named Big West Conference Athlete of the Week, swept her matches this past weekend. The Trojans will need to beat Yamada if they wish to earn their fourth win of the season. Against the Mustangs, doubles team juniors Becca Weissmann and Constance Branstine won both their singles matches but lost their doubles match in a close 6-4 game. Freshman Salma Ewing, the 24th-ranked player in the nation, lost her match against Mustangs sophomore Lisa Buss, 3-6, 4-6. One unsung player for the Trojans this season has been freshman Danielle Willson, who is ranked No. 99 in the nation. In singles play this year, Willson is at 4-0, undefeated in collegiate singles matches. In doubles play, Willson has been almost perfect, collecting a record of 9-1 so far this season. If the Trojans hope to take the Pac-12 crown this season, they will have to rely on Willson’s dominating play. The Men of Troy will take on the Florida Gators Friday at the ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Chicago while the Women of Troy face the Gauchos Saturday in Santa Barbara. Freshman Salma Ewing scrimmages teammates in practice to prepare for the upcoming tournament in Santa Barbara. (Emily Smith/Daily Trojan) The Trojans are currently in the middle of a schedule that has placed them against seven top-10 ranked teams in 10 matches, with three matches already under their belt. After that, the schedule eases up with four home matches against unranked teams to close out the season. After starting the season strong, USC men’s and women’s tennis both experienced their first tastes of defeat last weekend. The teams are looking to regroup with some strong play to get their seasons back on track. “I think we really have a chance to just do something special this year,” junior Riley Smith said. “[This] tournament is nothing different to us, and we are just going to go out there and compete.”last_img

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