SANTA CLARA, Calif. ‑ For its consistent success on the court throughout the duration of the 2013-14 campaign, the Santa Clara men's tennis team earned the No. 56 overall ranking in the nation as determined by the ITA. In the Northwest Region, the team locked up the No. 4 overall ranking.
Two Broncos were recognized in the rankings as well for their noteworthy performances on the coutry throughout the season. Senior John Lamble and junior Ilya Osintsev both notched a spot on the Northwest Region's top-20 singles list. Lamble came in at No. 4 overall while Osintsev earned the No. 13 ranking. Adding to the recognition, both Lamble and Osintsev grabbed the No. 4 overall spot in the region's doubles rankings after they put in one of the most storied performances in the history of Santa Clara men's tennis.
The Broncos competed as one of the most formidable foes on the West Coast this year, racking up 17 total wins for the third season in a row and pushing deep into the conference tournament.
During their run of play, Santa Clara was led by their trusty upperclassmen, Lamble and Osintsev.
Lamble completed his Santa Clara career with an outstanding 81 singles wins, second most all-time in the program's history. During his final season, he kept the Broncos on track, competing as a consistent force at the No. 1 singles position. He caught fire when the pressure was on and captured a number of team victories, including match clinchers against Saint Mary's in the WCC Championships and Oregon during the regular season. For his performance, Lamble earned Senior Player of the Year for the Northwest Region, All-WCC First Team honors as well as the No. 6 overall ranking in singles in the Northwest Region.
As a duo for the third straight season, Lamble and Osintsev turned in one of the most dazzling performances ever at Santa Clara, finishing as the No. 4 ranked team in the Northwest. The reliable tandem posted an 18-4 record and combined to tally 39 victories in total over the past three seasons. That mark of 39 wins puts the duo at No. 2 all-time on the doubles wins list at Santa Clara.
This season, Lamble and Osintsev cruised 8-2 over Kevin Farin and Robin Cambier from No. 39 Oregon, obliterated St. John's twosome 8-1, edged out No. 57 San Diego State 8-7(5) and began the season with a win over a duo from nearby Stanford. Santa Clara's pairing earned All-WCC First Team Doubles honors as well as All-WCC First Team Tournament Team honors for their tenacious performance during the postseason competition.
Osintsev came in at No. 13 in the Northwest Region after his dominating play in singles this past season. The 6-foot, 4-inch lefty from Russia piled up 14 wins in singles dual match play this season compared to just one defeat. Altogether, he finished with an 18-3 record.
For his triumph of the court, Osintsev received a number of accolades. The lanky lefty was named to the WCC's Second Team list for singles, WCC Championships All-Tournament Team, as well the WCC's First Team list for doubles. Osintsev also earned WCC Player of the Week on three separate occasions, the most among any conference competitor.
During Santa Clara's postseason run, Osintsev clinched a number of important victories to keep the team alive. With the Broncos down 3-2 against Saint Mary's in the opening round of the tournament, the junior knocked off Tuomas Manner 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 to eventually help propel the Broncos into the quarterfinals. In that quarterfinal round, Osintsev came through with a 6-3, 6-2 over his opponent to once again lift the team over its opponent.
Throughout the dual match season, Osintsev was nearly untouchable. During his incredible 14-1 run in singles, he remarkably only dropped six total sets and rolled to winning streaks of both five and nine matches. The junior showed incredible poise and consistency at the No. 2 singles position, collecting wins over No. 39 Oregon's Robin Cambier and Max DeVroome from USC, one of the top programs in the nation.
After playing in a number of fall tournaments around the country, Santa Clara kicked off the 2014 season and came out splitting its first two matches. From that moment on, the Broncos found their winning ways and racked up eight consecutive wins to notch one of the best starts in program history. Despite suffering a slump during the mid-way portion of the season, Santa Clara rallied and won four out of its last five conference matches before heading into the WCC Championships. Behind top performances by a number of Broncos, the squad edged out Saint Mary's in the opening round and cruised by USF in the quarterfinals but were tamed by San Diego in the semifinals.