The Pepperdine men's tennis team (24-4) is seeded fourth and UCLA (17-9) ninth in the team portion of the NCAA championships Friday through Tuesday at the University of Georgia at Athens. Individual singles and doubles competition will be played Wednesday through May 29 at the same site.
UCLA, runner-up to Georgia last year, will open against No. 8 Georgia at 9 a.m. Saturday. Pepperdine will play at 9 a.m. Saturday against the winner of Friday's match between Tennessee and Texas Christian.
UCLA Coach Glenn Bassett said he is "not too unhappy meeting Georgia so early. I know it is tough to play Georgia anytime, especially on their home courts, but I'm looking forward to the match. I'm sure it's a challenge to our players."
Bassett said that if the Bruins get by Georgia, "we have a good draw. After all, top-seeded Stanford and No. 3 USC are in the other half of the draw, and we wouldn't have to play No. 4 Pepperdine until the semifinals."
He couldn't be eager to play the Waves again so soon. Pepperdine defeated the Bruins, 5-1, last week in the final regular-season match for both.
At No. 1 singles, Pepperdine's top-ranked Robbie Weiss defeated UCLA's Buff Farrow, 6-3, 6-4, and No. 4 Andrew Sznadjer of the Waves topped Brian Garrow, 7-6, 6-3.
Those four players will play singles, and so will UCLA's Pat Galbraith and Pepperdine's Craig Johnson. Jason Netter of UCLA is an alternate in singles.
In doubles, Pepperdine will have the team of Johnson and Grant Saacks and UCLA the teams of Galbraith-Garrow and Farrow-Robert Bierens.
Final singles and doubles matches in the individual portion of the NCAA women's tennis championships will begin at 5 p.m. today at UCLA's Los Angeles Tennis Center.
The top-ranked UCLA women's softball team (46-7) will play host to No. 9 Cal State Fullerton (47-18) in the NCAA Northwest Regional tournament this weekend at UCLA's Sunset Canyon Field.
The first game will be at 3 p.m. Friday and the second at 1 p.m. Saturday. A third game, if necessary, will follow Saturday's second game. The winner will advance to the College World Series, which will be played Wednesday through May 29 at Sunnyvale. Other area teams in regionals are No. 5 Cal Poly Pomona and No. 7 Cal State Long Beach.
Last week the Bruins finished the regular season by splitting a double-header with Cal Poly Pomona. UCLA pitcher Samantha Ford, who had missed eight straight starts with mononucleosis, won the second game with the Broncos, 1-0, after Lisa Longaker lost for only the third time this season, 2-1.
For the second consecutive year, Longaker was named the Pac-10 player of the year, and four other Bruins were named to the all-conference team: freshman outfielders Shanna Flynn and Lorraine Maynez, senior catcher Stacy Sunny and junior third baseman Janice Parks.
Pepperdine senior Doug Simons was named pitcher of the year in the West Coast Athletic Conference, and Wave pitcher Dennis Burbank was chosen freshman of the year.
First-team all-conference selections from Pepperdine are first baseman Scott Shockey and outfielder Rick Hirtensteiner. Loyola Marymount players on the first team are designated hitter Miah Bradbury, second baseman Carl Fraticelli, third baseman Don Sparks and outfielder Brian Turang.
Waves on the second team are third baseman Chris Sloniger, shortstop Chris Martin, pitcher Britt Craven and Burbank. Second-teamers from Loyola are outfielder Brian Turang and pitcher Darryl Scott.
It's possible that the WCAC will have three teams in the NCAA playoffs. Conference champion Pepperdine received an automatic berth, and second-place Santa Clara and third-place Loyola Marymount are ranked among the nation's top teams. Seedings and pairings for the NCAAs will be announced Monday.
Pepperdine sophomore Ginger Helgeson, who pulled a major upset in the team portion of last week's NCAA tennis championships at UCLA, is one of 12 college women players named to the U.S. Tennis Assn.'s national team.
Helgeson lost in the first round of the individual singles competition of the NCAAs this week in an upset to USC's Lupita Novelo, 2-6, 7-6, 6-3, but she was on her game last week.
In the team portion of the NCAAs, Helgeson, the tournament's seventh seed in singles, upset top-seeded Halle Cioffi of No. 1 Florida, 6-3, 6-2. Cioffi is ranked 36th on the professional tour.
The No. 16 Waves bowed to top-seeded Florida, 5-1, in the second round to finish the year with a 22-4 record. No. 4 UCLA lost to Florida, 5-4, in the semifinals and ended with a 20-6 mark. No. 2 Stanford defeated the Seminoles, 5-2, for its third straight NCAA title.
As a member of the USTA team, Helgeson will travel to national and international satellite and major tour events. Players, whose travel costs and training sessions will be paid for by the USTA, will be guided in managing stress, cooperating with media and sponsors, applying sports science principles and handling practical aspects of a tennis career.
The ninth-ranked UCLA women's golf team will compete in the NCAA tournament Wednesday through May 28 at New Mexico State in Las Cruces.
The Bruins are led by No. 26 Jean Zedlitz, a sophomore, and No. 29 Valerie Pamard, a senior. Others on the team are senior Camilla Karlsson, junior Lana Perhacs and freshman Debbi Koyama.