Santa Clara Takes On Gonzaga and Oregon This Weekend At Home
Feb. 15, 2007
The Santa Clara Broncos have a full slate of matches this week as the Broncos will play their next five matches at home at the Degheri Tennis Center. On Friday, Feb. 16 at 2:30 p.m., SCU welcomes West Coast Conference foe, Gonzaga, before taking on Pac-10 opponent No. 75 Oregon at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 17. The Broncos week does not end there as George Husack's squad finishes the stretch by hosting UC Santa Barbara on Monday, Feb. 19 at 11:00 a.m. PT. In the latter part of the next week more conference play will take place when the Broncos host University of San Francisco Thursday, Feb. 22 at 2:30 p.m.
Santa Clara completed a five-match road stretch with two tough matches in Arizona. On Feb. 9, the Broncos fell 5-2 to No. 57 Arizona State. After losing the first doubles match of the day, Macek and Rasmussen routed Juan Carlos Rebaza and Nick Hegarty 8-3 to even the match. In the deciding match, Brian Brogan and Robert Gallman got down 1-5, but battled back to 5-5 and the match eventually went to a tiebreaker before Arizona State's T.J. Bellama and Murilo Souza pulled it out for the Sun Devils 7-4. In singles, the Broncos had two bright spots at the No. 3 and No. 4 positions. Jay Wong captured his 16th win of the year, beating Wes Miller 6-4, 1-6, 6-3, while Robert Gallman won at No. 4 when Nick Hegerty retired with the score 2-6, 6-2, 0-3. Following that loss, the Broncos faced No. 72 Arizona on Feb. 10 and earned a clutch 4-3 win with No. 1 Jan Macek clinching the match in a three-setter. After winning the doubles point, the match went back and forth in singles with Brian Brogan and Jay Wong winning their matches, while Tommy Hicks, Robert Gallman and Bobby Rasmussen lost. In the deciding match Macek and Arizona's Claudio Christen split the first two sets. Macek went up 5-2 in the third and was serving for the match. However, Christen broke Macek to cut the lead to 5-3 and then went up 40-0 on his serve and appeared on the verge of narrowing the gap even more. But the Broncos top player would not fold, winning five straight points to capture the match 6-1, 5-7, 6-3 and give SCU an important 4-3 victory. The Broncos success continued against No. 73 University of Hawai'i on Feb. 14. with another 4-3 victory. The Broncos won the doubles point with all three doubles teams winning their matches. Following straight set singles wins by Blane Shields and Jay Wong, the final four matches went the distance. At the No. 5 Bobby Rasmussen was able to pull through with a win in a 6-1, 2-6, 7-5 victory, after fighting off three match points in the third set. At the No. 2 SCU's Brian Brogan faced No. 37 in the nation, Andreas Weber, and nearly sprung an upset. Brogan battled hard by coming back in the second set to win 6-3 after falling 6-1 in the first. In the super tiebreaker that ensued Weber was able to defeat Brogan 10-6.
Brogan Reaches Final Of SAP Open Pre-Qualifying Tournament
Santa Clara University sophomore tennis player Brian Brogan won five matches over three days to reach the final of the SAP Open pre-qualifying tournament and qualify for the main qualifying draw for the annual ATP event. The SAP Open, an ATP tour event, takes place from Feb. 12-18 at HP Pavilion. On Monday, Feb. 5 Brogan took a midterm exam and then headed directly to the pre-qualifying tournament in Sunnyvale to begin play. He swept to two convincing wins, 6-0, 6-0 and 6-1, 6-1 to earn a spot in the third round against the tournament's No. 6 seed, Shibu Lal. After defeating Lal in a two-hour match on Tuesday morning, Brogan faced No. 2 seed Timour Dick in the afternoon in the quarterfinals. The match went back and forth with each player winning a set 7-5. Brogan took control in the third set and closed out Dick 6-4 in the third to win the match in three hours and 40 minutes. Brogan then won his semifinal match against Shane Templeman 6-2, 6-4 to book his ticket to the main qualifying draw. The pre-qualifying tournament finalists were each guaranteed a spot in the qualifying tournament. With his place secured Brogan then retired against Brad Weston in the final so that he had energy left for the Broncos trip to Arizona. Brogan was unable to return in time to play in the SAP Qualifying Draw due to the Broncos' matches.
Broncos Move Up
After defeating No. 72 Arizona, Santa Clara moved up from No. 75 to No. 73 in the national rankings. Not since 2002 has the men's tennis program achieved a national ranking when they were No. 55 in the nation.
Macek/Rasmussen and McQuaid/Shields Moving Up Record Books
The doubles teams of Jan Macek/Bobby Rasmussen and Kevin McQuaid/Blane Shields are moving up the record books in career doubles victories. McQuaid and Shields won a school record 20 matches last year to move to No. 4 all-time in doubles wins. The pair has won five matches this year and are now tied with Tony Del Rosario and Frank Seitz for third all-time with 25 wins. Macek and Rasmussen started the year with 18 career wins together and have burst out of the gate this spring, posting a 10-2 record so far to move into sole possession of second place all-time with 28 wins. Macek and Rasmussen are still 19 wins away from the all-time leaders, Marcell Hlousek and Jeremy Testwuide, who won 47 matches together at SCU.
Rasmussen Aiming For Top-10 In Singles
Senior Bobby Rasmussen has gotten off to a fantastic start to the spring season in singles, posting a 7-4 record to move his career singles record to 52-48. He is now within four victories of catching Marcel Hlousek for eighth all-time in career singles wins.
Wong Super Frosh
Freshmen Jay Wong continues to have an outstanding first season on the Mission Campus. The San Jose native has won four singles matches in a row to push his record to 18-6 on the year. With two more wins, Wong would move into the top 10 all-time for wins in a single season. The all-time record for wins in a season is 30, accomplished by Francisco Zepponi when he posted a 30-8 record in 2002.
The Santa Clara men's tennis team has achieved a number of notable firsts this season on the courts. The team defeated UC Irvine for the first time in program history on Feb. 4, earning a 6-1 win. The team's win over the University of Arizona on Feb. 10 contained a pair of firsts. The Broncos had never beaten Arizona in the past and they had not beaten a Pac-10 team on the road. However, SCU accomplished both tasks with its 4-3 victory.
Playing at the No. 1 position this season, senior Jan Macek has had a number of tight matches against some of the nation's top players. He has now played four nationally ranked players, including Luke Shields (Boise State), Pierre Mouillon (California), Andre Begemann (Pepperdine) and Claudio Christen (Arizona). Prior to his match against Christen, Macek had dropped two three-setters to Shields and Mouillon, while losing in a second set tiebreaker to Begemann. However, Macek did not stop pushing and he earned his first victory of the year over a ranked opponent against Arizona. Christen was ranked No. 86 when Macek beat him 6-1, 5-7, 6-3 to clinch a Bronco win on Feb. 10.
Bronco tennis fans can now follow all home matches live on SantaClaraBroncos.com with live scoring for all matches. Fans can find the link to live scoring on the men's tennis schedule page or on the men's tennis home page under Bronco Bits. To view live scoring, fans must download Java Run Time software from Sun Microsystems, a free web download at java.com.
History vs. Gonzaga
None of the current Broncos have played a dual match against Gonzaga. The Broncos last faced the Bulldogs in 2003, sweeping the match 7-0. SCU also defeated the Zags 7-0 in 2002.
History vs. Oregon
The Broncos will host No. 75 in the nation Oregon on Saturday, Feb. 17. The Broncos have faced the Ducks in both 2005, winning 5-2 at home, and in 2006, they lost 5-2 at Oregon.
History vs. UC Santa Barbara
The Broncos will see UC Santa Barbara, the current defending Big West Champions, for the third time in three years. The Gauchos fell out of national ranking last week. In 2006 the Broncos lost 5-2 to the Gauchos at home, and in 2005 they won 5-2 at home.
Scouting the Opposition
Gonzaga's record is currently 2-3 entering Friday's match, and are coming off a 7-0 win against UC Davis at home, after losing three straight. As for Oregon, the Ducks are currently No. 75 in the country and boast a 6-2 overall record and are playing their first road match against the Broncos this Saturday. On Monday, Feb. 19 the Broncos will face the 1-4 UC Santa Barbara Gauchos, who will be ending their three game Northern California road trip at Santa Clara.
Team Awarded "Grinder of the Week"
The "Grinder of the Week" is a weekly award for the Bronco men's tennis team, recognizing an individual player demonstrating the ability to go above and beyond in both practice and competition. Last weeks "Grinder of the Week" Jan Macek voted that the entire Bronco tennis team receive the honor. Collectively the team has been playing well against all opponents and moving up in national ranking.
Off the Court
Not only are the men on the tennis team accomplished athletes, but exemplary students-athletes. Five Broncos recorded GPA's above a 3.0 in the fall quarter, including Robert Gallman (3.85), Bobby Rasmussen (3.67), Kevin McQuaid (3.43), Tommy Hicks (3.29) and Blane Shields (3.02).
SCU has played seven consecutive ranked opponents in the past two weeks, Boise State (25), California (18), Pepperdine (9), UC Irvine (74), Arizona State (57), Arizona (72) and Hawai'i (73). Those rankings were at the time of the match. SCU will face No. 75 Oregon this Saturday, Feb. 17. The team will also play Stanford (29), Saint Mary's (62), Cal Poly (74) and Portland (75).