Sept. 8, 2004
by Kelley Johnson
Media Relations Assistant
SANTA CLARA, Calif.--The 2004-05 Men's tennis schedule features more than half of the dual matches against 2004 NCAA Tournament participants and five teams that finished in the top-30 rankings at the end of the 2004 season, as announced by head coach George Husack.
Seventeen of 26 dual matches will be against ITA nationally-ranked opposition, long-lasting rivalries will be challenged and the annual West Coast Conference tournament will be played at Pepperdine.
Santa Clara opens the season on Sept. 24 in the first of three days spent competing at the Tiger Fall Classic hosted by University of the Pacific in Stockton. The fall includes appearances in five other tournaments, highlighted by Santa Clara hosting the Bronco Classic, Oct. 8-10 at the Degheri Tennis Center.
"Moving the tournament from Fresno to Santa Clara is a tremendous addition to our schedule. We've fared well at previous Bulldog Classics and to have the opportunity to compete at home with many great squads will provide our fans with some exciting tennis action," Husack said.
The Broncos begin their 2005 campaign to the NCAA Tournament at home with back-to-back matches on Jan. 23 against UC Santa Cruz and UC Davis.
Continued play keeps the squad in the Bay Area for most of March as they will travel to San Francisco to face the Dons on the second, before returning home for two of their largest matches of the season, against Hawaii on March 4 and Oregon on the 13th. This will mark the first return to Santa Clara for Oregon after suffering a 6-1 loss in March 2002 while ranked No. 52 in the nation.
The first of five matches with ranked opponents will take place when Clemson visits Santa Clara on March 25, as the only 2004 ranked opponent to play at the Tennis Center this season during regular season play.
The much anticipated Bronco Alumni Invitational will take place March 19 at the Tennis Center before the Broncos travel up the peninsula to face nationally-ranked Stanford two days later, who finished their last campaign at No. 7.
While on the road, the Broncos will face four top-30 opponents. The first being a late addition to the schedule, California, as Santa Clara will travel to Berkeley to take on the Bears, who finished 30th in the 2004 final rankings, on Jan. 25. Next, the Broncos will head to southern California to face Pepperdine Jan. 29, who finished with a No. 27 ranking, and UC Irvine Jan. 30.
Late February welcomes a historically-heated match as Santa Clara travels to Fresno to face the Bulldogs on Feb. 25, as well as Rice who finished 2004 ranked No. 11, on Feb. 26.
The Broncos will continue play through the month of April traveling to Albuquerque, N.M., and San Luis Obispo before their final home matches on April 16 against UC San Diego and Sacramento State.
April 22-24 marks the WCC Championships, hosted by Pepperdine in Malibu.
"We have a tough schedule that will challenge our players right away in both the fall and spring seasons. The intent is to compete at a level that will give us the opportunity to receive a bid to the NCAA tournament. I'm excited to see all the guys back on campus and watch our seniors have a banner year," Husack concluded.