By Craig Malveaux11:14 a.m.July 31, 2013
CARLSBAD — Coco Vandeweghe is a tad superstitious.
Her unofficial motto: if it works, it works.
“My coach and I were joking about that at Stanford,” Vandeweghe said.
“I was on a winning streak with Umami Burger. I kept winning matches, so I kept eating it. I ate a burger from there five days in a row. I was kind of getting sick of it. I’m like, ugh, I can’t do another burger.”
So on Day No. 6, the Bank of the West Classic qualifier broke the cycle. Coincidentally, it broke her rhythm as she lost the very next match.
“Sometimes it gets crazy,” Vandeweghe said, laughing.
Yet the Rancho Santa Fe resident can’t resist. Her new food venue of choice: a Hawaiian spot called Surf Brothers.
Thus far, it’s produced results. Vandeweghe notched another victory Tuesday, serving her way past Allie Kiick 6-1, 6-2 for her fourth victory in the Southern California Open at La Costa Resort and Spa.
“I agree with that,” Vandeweghe said, addressing a question in a post-match press conference. “It’s been the best two-week stretch I’ve had all year.”
All fueled by superstitions and good food.
Her serve aided, too.
Vandeweghe powered 12 aces past Kiick — the daughter of former NFL running back Jim Kiick — and lost only one point on first serves, despite little knowledge of Kiick’s repertoire.
“Thankfully, we have some kind of scouting report in YouTube videos,” Vandeweghe said.
“You can get a basic feel for their tendencies watching them play on the computer. It’s much different when you actually compete against them on the court, but you can at least get an idea of their strengths.”
Which Vandeweghe did, dominating Kiick in the first set.
A bit cautious, Vandeweghe consulted her coach — Jan-Michael Gambill — for guidance despite her serve and backhand clicking on all cylinders.
“I wanted some confirmation on my forehand. Basically, just to reiterate what I saw out there, how I was responding and what I was thinking on the court,” Vandewege said.
“I felt I was jumping at it a little bit out there.”
The SoCal Open qualifier advances to the second round where she will face the winner of Dominika Cibulkova and Ana Ivanovic, who are slated to play today.
“I’ve never played either opponent, but it will be a great opportunity for me since they’re both accomplished players,” Vandeweghe said.
Ivanovic, ranked No. 17 in the world, won the 2008 French Open. Cibulkova, last year’s SoCal Open champ and a winner last week at Stanford, is ranked No. 21 in the world.