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NCAA tournament: USC, UCLA and Pepperdine all host games this weekend

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Members of the USC women’s soccer team celebrate after defeating West Virginia to win the Women’s College Cup on Dec. 4.
(Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

USC, UCLA and Pepperdine will all open play in the NCAA women’s soccer tournament with home dates this weekend.

USC, the defending NCAA champion, is seeded third and will play host to Eastern Washington (16-5-1) on Saturday at noon. The Trojans (14-3-1) are ranked No. 6 in the latest United Soccer Coaches poll.

UCLA, which beat USC in the regular-season finale for both schools last week, is a No. 2 seed in the tournament and will begin play against San Diego State (12-7-2) on Friday at 7 p.m. at Drake Stadium. The Bruins (15-2-2) are ranked fifth nationally.

West Coast Conference champion Pepperdine, 14-2-3 and ranked 12th in the coaches poll, will meet Cal State Fullerton (12-5-4), the Big West Conference winner, in a first-round game Saturday at 1 p.m. in Malibu.

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Stanford (18-1), the Pac-12 champion and the tournament’s top seed, is No. 1 nationally. It will play host to Utah Valley (10-11-1) in its first-round game.

kevin.baxter@latimes.com

Twitter: @kbaxter11

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