Santa Clara Hosts Three Matches This Weekend To Close Out Regular Season
April 11, 2007
Santa Clara men's tennis wraps up the regular season this weekend with three matches. The Broncos take on Nevada on Friday, April 13 at 5 p.m. PT in a night match at the Degheri Tennis Center. The team then plays two matches on Sunday, April 15 to finish the season. SCU faces UC San Diego at 10 a.m. followed by a match against Sacramento State at 3 p.m. Prior to the Sacramento State match SCU will honor seniors Jan Macek and Bobby Rasmussen.
Santa Clara split two hard-fought matches last week against No. 60 Stanford and West Coast Conference rival, San Francisco. SCU fell to Stanford 4-3 at the Taube Family Tennis Center on April 4. Stanford swept doubles to go up 1-0, but SCU got singles wins from Blane Shields and Brian Brogan to go up 2-1 overall. Stanford recovered to take a 3-2 lead, before Jay Wong tied the match at three apiece. In the deciding match, Tommy Hicks fell 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 to David Ryan to give Stanford the victory. SCU came back the following day to defeat San Francisco for the second time in 2007. The Broncos earned a 6-1 win, but every match was closely contested. Santa Clara won the three doubles matches and also won three three-set matches in singles to pull out the win. Jan Macek, Jay Wong, Blane Shields, Tommy Hicks and Kenzo Hirakawa-Wong all earned singles wins for the Broncos.
The Broncos will honor seniors Jan Macek and Bobby Rasmussen prior to the Sacramento State match on Sunday, April 15 at 3 pm. PT. Macek and Rasmussen have left their marks on the SCU record books during their careers. As a doubles pair, they are second all-time in program history in wins with 34, including a 16-5 mark this season. Overall, the two have combined for 102 doubles wins and 102 singles wins during their Bronco careers. They are both in the top 10 in combined doubles wins, while Rasmussen is tied for sixth all-time in singles wins. Macek has never played below No. 2 in his career, playing 21 matches at the No. 2 position and 52 matches at No. 1 in his three seasons of play at SCU.
Broncos In the Polls
For the 10th straight week, the Bronco men's tennis team finds itself ranked among the top 75 teams in the country. SCU entered the rankings on Feb. 6 at No. 75 and moved as high as No. 59. This week, SCU is ranked 68th in the nation.
The men's tennis team has posted 12 wins this season against teams that have been ranked in the national polls this season. The Broncos defeated UC Irvine, Arizona, Hawaii, Oregon, UCSB, Portland, Saint Mary's, Cal Poly, BYU, Harvard and USF twice. All of those teams have spent time in the national rankings in 2007.
Brogan and Macek Swap
Against USF on April 5, Brian Brogan moved to the No. 1 spot for the first time in his collegiate career, while Jan Macek played his first match at No. 2 since 2005. Macek played only No. 1 in 2006 and had yet to play anything but No. 1 this season. Brogan nearly defeated Matthew Berry of San Francisco at the top spot, losing in three sets 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (6). Macek won his match at No. 2 over Falko Huettenberger 6-1, 6-4.
The Nevada Wolf Pack has had an up-and-down season with nine wins and 10 losses. The team has had some impressive wins, beating No. 65 Mississippi State and Oregon. The Wolf Pack also suffered losses to the Broncos other two opponents this week, Sacramento State and UC San Diego. In the team's last match, the Wolf Pack earned a 6-1 win over UC Davis for the team's third win in its past four matches. The Broncos have not played Nevada since Feb. 3, 2001 when they earned a 7-0 sweep. Santa Clara won all three doubles matches and lost just one set in sweeping the six singles matches. Matt Cox, Ryan Livesay, Michael Duong, Victor Camargo, Erich Chen and Adam Artunian won in singles for SCU.
Scouting UC San Diego
UC San Diego is ranked No. 5 in the nation in Division 2 and has beaten a number of Division 1 opponents this season, including Sacramento State, Cal Poly and Nevada. The team is now 15-5 on the season after beating Cal Poly Pomona on April 11. The Tritons will play Sonoma State on April 14 prior to concluding their regular season against the Broncos. The Broncos last faced UC San Diego on April 16, 2005 with SCU earning a 6-1 win. Santa Clara won two out of three doubles matches and five out of six singles matches to earn the victory. Eric Kochanski and Bobby Rasmussen won at No. 1 doubles while Ben Hidalgo and Jan Macek won at No. 3 doubles. In singles, Kochanski, Francisco Zepponi, Rasmussen, A.J. Kerin and Tyler Wilson earned wins for SCU.
Scouting Sacramento State
Sacramento State has had an outstanding season in 2007, posting a 15-5 record to clinch the No. 1 seed in the Big Sky conference tournament. They last won the conference title in 2003. The Hornets have appeared in the national rankings this season and have beaten No. 67 Central Florida, along with West Coast Conference schools Saint Mary's, Portland and San Francsico. Santa Clara has beaten Sacramento State six straight times since losing 5-2 on Feb. 21, 2000. The Hornets No. 1 player, Xavier Barajas-Smith, was ranked No. 1 in NorCal Boys 18s last year and played doubles with current Bronco freshman Steven Benvenuto. As a pair, they reached No. 14 nationally in Boys 18s. Last season the Broncos defeated the Hornets 6-0 on April 13. SCU swept singles matches with current Broncos Jan Macek, Brian Brogan, Kevin McQuaid, Bobby Rasmussen and Tommy Hicks all winning. The teams did not play doubles.
Grinder of the Week
Brian Brogan won the team's Grinder of the Week award after getting wins against Cornell, Harvard and Stanford and narrowly losing against USF in his first match at No. 1 singles. Playing mostly No. 2 singles, Brogan has earned 12 dual match victories this season, tied for second-best on the team.
The doubles point continues to be huge for George Husack's team. The Broncos are 16-0 when winning the doubles point and 0-6 when losing the doubles point.
The Broncos reached 15 wins for the first time under current head coach George Husack with a victory over Harvard on March 31. His previous high was 14, set in 2005 and equaled last season. The team now has 16 wins, four behind the all-time record for wins in a season, set in 1986 by head coach Cliff Barrett's team.
Santa Clara had its four-match road win streak snapped against Stanford on April 4 with a 4-3 loss in the team's final road match of the season. The Broncos finished 5-4 on the road this year.
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 six matches this year and is now in sole possession of third all-time with 26 wins. Macek and Rasmussen started the year with 18 career wins together have posted a 16-5 record so far to move into sole possession of second place all-time with 34 wins. Macek and Rasmussen are still 13 wins away from the all-time leaders, Marcell Hlousek and Jeremy Testwuide, who won 47 matches together at SCU from 1997-99. For a single season, Macek and Rasmussen are tied for seventh all-time with 16 wins. One more win would catapult them into a tie for fourth place.
Macek/Rasmussen Both In Top-10 In Combined Doubles
Bobby Rasmussen reached 51 career combined doubles wins with wins alongside Jan Macek against San Francisco on March 7 and Cal Poly on March 11. Rasmussen is now tied with Matt Cox (1998-2001) for the No. 9 spot in Broncos history with 51 combined wins. Next on the list is Taylor Bedilion '05, who had 56 career doubles wins. With Rasmussen sitting out the past four matches, Macek has won three more doubles matches to improve his career win total in doubles to 51 to match Rasmussen.
Rasmussen Into Top-10 In Singles
Senior Bobby Rasmussen has had an excellent spring season in singles, posting a 15-4 record to move his career singles record to 60-48. He is now tied with Federico Mattioli for sixth all-time in singles wins at SCU. Rasmussen has won nine straight singles matches for SCU. The senior lost his first five matches in the fall, but since those losses he has posted an 18-4 record.
Wong Super Frosh
Freshman Jay Wong continues to make history as a freshman after winning two more singles matches last week against Stanford and San Francisco. Wong moved into sole possession of second place all-time in single season wins with those victories. The San Jose native has a 27-9 record on the year. 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 Broncos have three regular season matches remaining followed by the WCC Championships for Wong to catch Zepponi.
Shields Still Dominant
Junior Blane Shields finally lost a match after winning his first eight singles matches in duals. He fell 6-3, 6-2 to Gideon Valkin of Harvard on March 31 to drop his record to 8-1 in duals. However, he bounced back with two straight wins against Stanford and USF on April 4 and 5, respectively. He is 17-3 overall in singles (10-1 in duals) after going 7-2 in the fall and he has also clinched three wins for SCU.
Hirakawa-Wong Earns First Win
Sophomore Kenzo Hirakawa-Wong played his first dual singles match of the year against San Francisco on April 5. The San Francisco native got a win in his first match, defeating Mitch Del Rosario 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (5). Hirakawa-Wong had played two doubles matches in dual competition, posting a 1-1 record.
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. The Broncos achieved another first in on March 11, defeating Cal Poly on the road for the first time in school history.
SCU has already played 12 ranked opponents this season, Boise State (25), California (18), Pepperdine (9), UC Irvine (74), Arizona State (57), Arizona (72), Hawai'i (73), Oregon (75), Saint Mary's (72), Cornell (75), BYU (69) and Stanford (60). Those rankings were at the time of the match. The Broncos played only 10 ranked opponents all of last season.