WSU sophomore Donika Bashota picked up her third singles tournament title of the young season at the WSU Invitational on Sunday. Bashota didn't drop a set throughout the weekend as she cruised to another tournament win.
Bashota has been the star of this year's tennis team, playing at the No. 1 singles spot and being a force in doubles play. Bashota has replaced last season's top singles player, Elizaveta Luzina, who graduated last spring. Luzina finished her career third on the all time WSU singles victories list with 103.
In the Cougar Classic, WSU tennis' first action of the fall, Bashota dispatched of six opponents on her way to claiming the title. After she dropped the first set of her first match, she didn't drop a set the rest of the tournament. In their next tournament, Bashota stayed in the groove and finished by winning the championship match 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.
In the first two tournaments, Bashota was paired with senior Lize Leenknecht for the doubles flights and the two went undefeated over the two weekends. This past weekend, however, Bashota played with junior Victoria Matejevic in doubles play.
The WSU Invitational's doubles format wasn't a tournament, more of a round robin style that you can find on page six here. Bashota, suffered her first loss of the year with Matejevic over the weekend, but the duo rebounded to win their final three matches. In their last match Bashota and Matjevic beat the 56th ranked pairing of Kennan Johnson and Marlou Kluiving from Oregon.
It's not too unorthodox for the doubles pairings to be changed up in the fall, even though one may have some early success. Head coach Lisa Hart likely wants to explore her options, and see how players play together. The fall is a great time to do exactly that, as conference play hasn't started and players are coming into form.
I would be surprised if Bashota doesn't enter conference play as the top singles player for WSU, and I suspect she will occupy the top doubles spot with Leenknecht. All of this is coming off of a freshamn season where Bashota became the fourth player in WSU history to win 30 matches in a season.
She has brightened the future of Cougar tennis and has put herself in excellent position to make a run at some all-time records.
WSU soccer split a pair of home conference games this weekend. They lost 1-0 to USC on Thursday and then beat UCLA 4-2 Sunday afternoon. They were ranked 20th last week but have moved up to 17th, presumably on the strength of the win over the Bruins, who have had one of the premier programs in the country (but are down a little this year).
The Cougs travel to Utah and Colorado this weekend, and will next play at home Oct. 16 against Arizona at 7 pm.
Cougar Volleyball dropped two matches over the weekend at USC and UCLA who are both ranked. They return home to face two more ranked foes in Arizona and Arizona State on Friday and Sunday in Bohler Gym.
The Cross Country teams competed in the Washington Invitational on Friday against some top competition. The men placed 8th in an 11-team field, WSU placed the worst of any Pac-12 school. The Women came in 9th but that was good enough to top UCLA and Oregon State.