Gauchos Size Up Long Beach in Conference Matchup

Juliana Valero (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Juliana Valero (Photo by Tony Mastres)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif-. The UC Santa Barbara Women's Tennis team will continue its conference slate with a match against the 11-3 Long Beach State on Saturday, March 30, at 11 a.m. at the Rhodes Tennis Center in Long Beach, Calif.

UCSB carries a 7-6 dual match record and remains the only undefeated Big West team in conference matches while the Niners are 4-1 in conference meetings heading into Saturday.

Although Long Beach advertises a better overall record than Santa Barbara, all of UCSB's losses have come against top-50 opponents whereas Beach has only played against one top-50 team which resulted in a 4-3 loss to University of San Diego.

The Gauchos rely on strong play from Amit Lev Ari who posts an 8-3 singles record heading into UCSB's second conference meeting this year.

Despite struggles on courts one and four, UCSB thrives on both court five and six with a combined 17 wins from the back half of the lineup which matches up well against Long Beach State.

Beach is led by Natalia Munoz who just won her first career off a Big West Athlete of the Week after propelling the 49ers to a 2-win week against Cincinnati and Hawai'i.

In her junior season, Munoz boasts a 21-6 overall record with 11 wins and a mere two losses in dual matches.

Munoz has teamed up with Lalita Devarakonda to go 9-2 from No. 2 doubles which marks the most dual match doubles wins by a Long Beach pair this season.

Devarakonda has played primarily in the back half of singles this season but flaunts a 10-1 solo record with the majority of her victories coming from court five.

Hitting stride in conference play, the UC Santa Barbara Women's Tennis team travels to Long Beach, Calif. to face off against the LBSU 49ers on Saturday, March 30, at 11 a.m. at Rhodes Tennis Center.