COSTA MESA, Calif. – Top-seeded Vanguard (15-8) advanced to the Golden State Athletic Conference Women's Tennis Tournament Championship with a dominant 5-0 performance against fourth-seeded Arizona Christian on Wednesday morning at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
The Lions earned the tournament's No. 1 seed after going undefeated in 2014 GSAC play. Vanguard looks to keep its impressive 11-match league winning streak alive on Thursday when it will take on conference-rival and No. 2-seed Westmont for the title.
The Pride previously bested the No. 12 Warriors 5-3 and 5-4 in regular season action.
Wednesday's semifinal started with doubles where The Pride took a 3-0 lead.
Sophie Angner (SO/Stockholm, Sweden) and Gabrielle Alford (JR/Mentone, CA) notched the day's first point in the number two pairing after defeating ACU's Rafaella Zak Zak and Brianna Lopez 8-2. The Lions' No. 1 squad, Juliet Labarthe (SR/Oklahoma City, OK) and Michaele Sullivan (SO/Henderson, NV), were next to finish, beating the Firestorm's challengers 8-3. In the third pairing, Vanguard's freshman duo of Brooke Ferslov-Jensen (FR/Hesperia, CA) and Ashley Wao-Udin (FR/Las Vegas, NV) persevered to take down Isabella Diaz and Julia Anaya 8-5.
Wao-Udin and Ferslov-Jensen are 14-6 as a doubles' pair in 2014.
Ferslov-Jensen (21-0) kept going in singles, where she quickly zeroed Lopez at No. 6 to put the match within a point of victory.
The lone European on the Vanguard women's roster, Sophie Angner (17-5), did her job next, securing the championship berth with a 6-3, 6-2 win at second singles.
"Today we were all so fired up and excited to be playing on the professional courts at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Palm Springs," Angner said. "Since I am from the very north part of Europe, this was really hot weather for me, but we all supported each other through a great win today! 5-0! What a great start of this tournament! We are so grateful to play in the final tomorrow and to represent Vanguard!"
Junior captain Gabrielle Alford spoke a little on the court conditions, saying "Our match was pretty hot from the start, it peaked at around 97 degrees with it also being about 10 degrees hotter on the courts."
The GSAC Tournament Championship match is scheduled for 9:00 am on Thursday.