Bronco Men's Tennis Kicks Off Year With Bronco Boot Camp

Sept. 20, 2006

Photos from Bronco Boot Camp 2006

Santa Clara, Calif. - The Santa Clara University men's tennis team opened their fall season with its annual Bronco Boot Camp. The week from Sept. 11 - 20 featured a retreat to Lake Tahoe, followed by their first practice under the lights at the Degheri Tennis Center and then double day sessions for four days. "Midnight Madness", as the team's first practice is known, took place on Wednesday, Sept. 13 from 10:00 p.m. - midnight after the team returned from a three-day retreat at Lake Tahoe. The team then ground out four double days from Thursday, Sept. 14 - Sunday, Sept. 17.

"Bronco Boot Camp is an intense, but fun week for everyone," said men's tennis head coach George Husack. "We had some great practices and just as importantly, we had a lot of great activities that allowed the team to connect and build a solid foundation for the upcoming season."

From Monday - Wednesday of last week, the Broncos headed to the mountains where they participated in individual and team goal discussions, some competitive games and a bit of high-altitude training. The trip served as a way for the team to get to know each other again and to welcome the four newcomers to the team, redshirt junior Robert Gallman, freshman Steven Benvenuto, freshman Jay Wong and freshman Joe Galbraith.

After returning, the team officially opened training camp with its annual "Midnight Madness" late on the night of Sept. 13. The first training session featured a lot of hard-hitting and fast-paced rallies as the players shook off the rust from the summer break on a brisk fall evening. The practice finished just after midnight on Sept. 14.

The excitement of the first practice was followed by the cold reality of double sessions from Thursday - Sunday. On the court, the players hit a lot of balls, worked on form and got themselves sharp through live-ball drilling and point play. Off the court, strength and conditioning coaches Brien Shamp and Mike Salemi put the team through some grueling workouts to get their bodies into match shape. Shamp focused on flexibility and core development, while Salemi put the team through some leg workouts they will never forget. The players' leg exercises included pushing SUV's, pulling weighted sleds, climbing stairs with sandbags and sprinting while strapped to resistance bands.

To complete the week, the Broncos took to the court on Sunday for some spirited competition that saw players compete in best of five set matches. Following the matches, the team celebrated the end of Bronco Boot Camp with a team dinner in San Jose.

On a weekly basis throughout the season, a player will be named the "Grinder of the Week" for the men's tennis team, given to the player each week for his outstanding effort that week. The winner for week one was sophomore Aneal Vallurupalli, who is looking to make an impact in his second year as a Bronco.

The Bronco men's tennis team begins its fall season with the Santa Clara Bronco Classic from Oct. 6 -8 at the Degheri Tennis Center.