USC Opens With Wins Down Under

Both the USC men’s and women’s teams were part of history recently by becoming the first college teams to play a dual match at a Grand Slam.

The men earned a 4-0 victory over No. 25 South Carolina on the courts of the Australian Open in Melbourne. The women also were victorious over the Gamecocks, pulling out a 4-1 victory.

The Trojans snagged a quick doubles point and then got three quick wins in singles to clinch the match. In his first match as a Trojan, freshman Jake Sands of Pacific Palisades earned his first victory at No. 6 singles and USC also got wins at No. 2 by Daniel Cukierman and No. 3 Laurens Verboven.

The women dropped the doubles point to South Carolina, but were able to rally with four singles wins at No. 3 by Rianna Valdes, No. 5 by Ana Neffa and No. 6 by Danielle Willson and the clincher at No. 2 from Angela Kulikov. In her first match as a Trojan and playing at No. 1 singles, Lakewood’s Salma Ewing was up 7-5, 4-6, 5-2 when the match was clinched.

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