Some objective analysis on 2 matches.
- UCSB's team of Natalia Lozano & Jordan Dockendorf which had played #1 doubles the last 16 matches was dropped to #2 doubles against weak LMU. This drop IMHO is a calculated move geared for a better chance of beating CSUN & Long Beach St. UCSB also has one of their best doubles players Jill Damion playing #3 doubles.
- UCSB has Jill Damion playing #4 singles to match up against one of the biggest strengths of both CSUN & LBS. Jordan Dockendorf who had been playing #3 singles was dropped to #5 singles vs weak LMU. Again gearing up for CSUN & LBS.
- Annabel Gledden which has been one of UCSB's most reliable players has been moved from #4 to #3 singles. CSUN's #3 has lost 4 in a row. And IMHO Gledden has a better chance to upset LBS's #3 Deborah Armstrong than #4 Rachel Manasse.
- Looks to me like UCSB is solidifying #2 & #3 doubles and banking on #3, #5 & #6 singles against both CSUN & LBS.
#47 Boise St. def. #70 UCI 6-1
- With UCI's #1 Stephanie Hammel out UCI's best chance to beat a ranked team is to sweep #2, #3, #4, & #5 singles.
- UNLV's #2 thru #5 singles is much better than Boise St.'s 2-5 singles. With UNLV being especially tough at #2 & #3 singles UCI has little to no chance of beating UNLV without Hammel. But UCI has a 50% chance of beating Boise St. even without Hammel based on Boise St.'s softer 2-5 singles. The strength of BS lies in doubles, #1 & #6 singles.
- Since April Bisharat retired vs New Mexico St. the most important thing for UCI in my mind was to have Bisharat playing #1 vs Boise St. at any cost. This should have been the priority even if it meant sitting Bisharat out vs UNLV, which looked like a lost cause anyway for UCI.
- In my humble opinion UCI needed to go "all in" vs Boise St. even if it meant folding against UNLV. Instead the UCI coaching staff gambled big time & lost by playing Bisharat against UNLV at the risk of her retiring vs UNLV and being out against the more winnable Boise St. That's exactly what happened.
- A bird in hand is better than 2 in the bush comes to mind. Although it might have been just bad luck that Bisharat had to retire against UNLV and miss Boise St. it was certainly preventable by treating Boise St. as a "must win" and saving Bisharat for them.