Palo Alto Weekly

Sports - January 17, 2014

Stanford men's volleyball is No. 1

The top-ranked Stanford men's volleyball team opens its Mountain Pacific Sports Federation season at UCLA on Friday at 3 p.m. Stanford moved into the nation's top spot following losses by Loyola-Chicago, UC Irvine and BYU.

The Cardinal (3-0) opened its regular-season with a win over the Bruins at the UC Santa Barbara Invitational two weeks ago. The Bruins have won three straight since losing to Stanford.

The Cardinal is one of just five undefeated teams among the top 15. Stanford beat visiting Lewis in four sets and visiting Grand Canyon in straight sets last weekend.

The trip to UCLA opens a four-match road trip, which also includes UC Santa Barbara on Saturday before going to BYU and Cal Baptist the following weekend.

Men's tennis

Stanford downed visiting Pacific, 6-1, Tuesday afternoon at Taube Family Tennis Stadium in the season opener for both teams.

Stanford won the doubles point, clinching it at the top spot with John Morrissey and Maciek Romanowicz earning a 6-4 victory.

Anthony Tsodikov, who compiled a team-best 8-3 record during the fall season, continued his strong play with a 6-2, 6-0 triumph at No. 6.

Trey Strobel followed with a 6-3, 6-4 win on court five to give Stanford a 3-0 advantage. Romanowicz provided the clincher with a 6-4, 6-4 victory at the No. 3 position.

Pacific collected its only point at the No. 1 spot as Sem Verbeek out-dueled Morrissey, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2.

Stanford is back in action this weekend, competing at the Sherwood Cup in Thousand Oaks.

Women's tennis

Stanford will split its squad this weekend, with some traveling to the National Collegiate Tennis Championships in Indian Wells and others participating in the Freeman Memorial Invitational at UNLV.

The defending national champion Cardinal, which start the season ranked first in the nation, return five players from last year's team, including Kristie Ahn, who recorded the clinching win in Stanford's 4-3 victory over Texas A&M in the championship match.

Ahn (30-7) is one of three players, all of whom are back, who won at least 30 matches last year. She's joined by Krista Hardebeck (36-13) and Ellen Tsay (32-10). Returning players Amelia Herring and Lindsey Kostas combined for another 17 wins.

Freshmen Caroline Doyle, a San Francisco native, Taylor Davidson and Carol Zhao gives Stanford another top recruiting class. Doyle, who graduated from high school a year early, was rated the No. 4 overall recruit by some publications.

Doyle, who turns 18 in March, attended St. Ignatius Prep her freshman year (she was named WCAL Player of the Year) before training full-time at the USTA National Center in Florida. She earned her high school diploma online. She reached the semifinals of the USTA ITA Northwest Regional Championships in October.

Davidson was rated the seventh-best recruit in the nation. She reached the quarterfinals of the USTA ITA Northwest Regional Championships and partnered with Tsay to win the doubles title.

Zhao, who also reached the quarterfinals of the USTA ITA event, was born in Beijing and lives in Canada. She won the Australian Open junior doubles title, with Ana Konjuh, last January.

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