FULLERTON, Calif. --- Another spectacular season resulted with Cal State Fullerton being selected to play in the 2018 ITA Division I Women's Kick-Off Weekend.
The Titans' 2018 season will begin in Gainesville, Fla., as Cal State Fullerton will play defending 2017 NCAA Champion, Florida, in its home facility, Scott Linder Stadium at Alfred A. Ring Tennis Complex on Saturday, Jan. 27.
The Titans will then move on to play No. 2 Louisiana-Monroe or No. 3 Marshall, also in Fullerton's bracket.
Cal State Fullerton will enter 2018 with its recruiting class receiving a No. 9 mid-major ranking from TennisRecruiting.net as CSF will welcome a total of five newcomers for the 2017-18 season, it was announced by head coach Dianne Matias earlier this month.
LOOKING BACK AT 2017
For the second-straight season, Cal State Fullerton set new records for most wins in a season (19), winning percentage (19-4, .826) and longest winning streak in program history.
With a 4-3 victory over CSUN on April 28 in the Big West Championship quarterfinal, the Titans won their 19th match of the season, setting a new program record for single-season victories. The previous record was 17 wins in 2016.
The win also advanced the Titans to the Big West Championship semifinals for the first time in the history of the program.
In addition, the Titans boasted a program-record 11-match win streak to start the season from Jan. 21 – March 5, the longest for the program on record dating back to 1981.
Seniors Alexi Valenzuela and Camille De Leon were ranked the 80th doubles team in the country according to the final Oracle/ITA Division I Collegiate Women's National Doubles Rankings released on May 31.
For the fourth-straight season, Alexis Valenzuela received Big West Singles First Team honors, the only Titan to accomplish such a feat in the history of the program. In her four-year career with the Titans, Valenzuela boasted a 55-15 record in dual singles matches, including a 17-10 mark in the Big West Conference and a 51-13 career record when playing at the top of the order.
With doubles partner Camille De Leon, the pair was named to the Big West Conference Doubles First Team for the second year in a row. The duo is the only Titans doubles team to win first team honors more than once. Over the last two years, the pair totaled a 30-4 record at No. 1 doubles, including a 16-2 mark in 2017, which is a new doubles record for the No. 1 team at Fullerton.
De Leon, who won doubles conference honors for four-straight years, was named to the Big West Conference Singles Second Team after putting together a 12-4 season, mostly playing at No. 2 in the lineup for Fullerton. De Leon departed Fullerton with a 54-29 singles mark.
Fullerton's No. 2 doubles team of Sarah Nuno and Karla Portalatin received Big West Conference doubles honorable mention accolades after finishing the year with a 17-4 record, including a 6-1 mark against league competition.
Valenzuela was also voted the Big West Conference Women's Tennis Athlete of the Week five times during her career, including two times in 2017 (March 8, Feb. 1).
Nuno went a combined 3-0 in singles and doubles play to earn the Big West Conference Women's Tennis Athlete of the Week award, it was announced by the league on Feb. 8. The athlete of the week award was the first for Nuno during her Titan career.
FIRSTS & SEASON HIGHLIGHTS
The Cal State Fullerton women's tennis team delivered Nebraska its first loss of the season with a 4-1 victory over the Cornhuskers on March 21 at Titan Tennis Courts. The win was the first for Fullerton in five tries against Nebraska dating back to 2000.
In addition, the doubles team of Camille De Leon and Alexis Valenzuela was selected to participate in the 2016 Riviera/ITA Women's All-American Championships, which was hosted by the Riviera Tennis Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif., for the 33rd straight year. The tournament kicked off with pre-qualifying matches starting on Oct. 1, while the main draw ran Oct. 6-9. It is believed this is the first time anyone in the CSF program competed in the tournament.
Also in the fall, De Leon and Valenzuela suffered a 6-3, 6-1 loss to then 19th-ranked Mayar Sherif Ahmed and Christine Maddox of Pepperdine in the ITA West Regional Doubles Final at Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego on Oct. 24.
De Leon and Valenzuela were the third seed in the tournament while Sherif Ahmed and Maddox were the second seed. De Leon and Valenzuela upset eighth-ranked and the Regional's No. 1 seed, Palina Dubavets and Stefani Stojic from UC Santa Barbara, in the semifinal to reach the final.
Four Cal State Fullerton women's tennis players received Academic All-Big West Conference honors, it was announced by the league office in June.
To be eligible for the All-Academic teams, student-athletes have to maintain a 3.0 cumulative grade point average, have attained sophomore standing academically, and competed in at least 50 percent of their team's contests.
Camille De Leon, Sarah Nuno, Karla Portalatin, and Alexis Valenzuela made the team for the Titans. De Leon and Valenzuela were each selected for each of the three seasons they were eligible.
SUPPORT THE TITANS!
Fans can purchase tickets for various Cal State Fullerton athletic events by visiting FullertonTitans.com/Tickets. The Athletic Ticket Office can also be contacted by phone at 657-278-2783 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Ticket Office is located at the Titan House off of Gymnasium Drive at the eastern end of the Intramural Fields and is open from 10 am – 4 pm PT, Monday – Friday.
FOLLOW THE TITANS
Fans can keep up with the latest in Titans athletics by following us on Facebook (@FullertonTitans), Twitter (@FullertonTitans), and Instagram (@FullertonTitans) and Snapchat (FullertonTitans). In addition, the women's tennis team has established its own official Twitter page (@CSUFTennis), Facebook Page (@CSFWomensTennis), Instagram (@CSUFTennis) and Snapchat (CSUFTennis).