Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Cats Travel to Texas for ITA Kick-Off Weekend
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: January 27, 2011
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Jan. 27, 2011

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No. 32 Arizona (1-0, 0-0 Pac-10) vs. No. 44 Miami (1-1, 0-0 ACC)


Date: Saturday, January 29, 2011

 Time: 10 a.m.

Location: College Station, Texas at the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center


Follow the Matches Live: Scoring and video can be found at:


Match Data: The Wildcats (1-0, 0-0 Pac-10) will head to College Station, Texas to compete in the 2011 ITA  Tennis Kick-Off Weekend against the University of Miami (1-1, 0-0 ACC). No. 32-ranked Arizona will face the No. 44-ranked Hurricanes on the home courts of No. 10-ranked Texas A&M who squares off against No. 40 Mississippi State in the other match. The winners/losers of both matches will face each other Sunday with the winners competing against each other for a spot at the ITA National Team Indoor Championships Feb. 18-21. 60 men’s teams are competing around the U.S. this weekend vying to earn one of the 15 spots at the Championships.


Schedule of Play:

Saturday, Jan. 29: Texas A&M vs. Mississippi State

Saturday, Jan. 29: Arizona vs. Miami

Sunday, Jan. 30 at 12 p.m.: Consolation Match

Sunday, Jan. 30 at 3 p.m.: Championship Match


Swinging Into The Rankings: In this week’s rankings the Wildcats maintained their spot at No. 32. Senior Andres Carrasco received a No. 16 spot in the first rankings of the ITA Southwest Regional


Arizona Head Coach Tad Berkowitz enters his sixth season as the head coach of the Wildcats. During the 2008-09 season he was named the Pac-10 Men's Tennis Coach of the Year and the Wilson/ITA West Region Coach of the Year.  Last season, he led the Wildcats to a 13-11 overall record and the program's eighth trip to the NCAA Tournament.  He joined the program in 2004 and has held numerous national and collegiate coaching positions. He was promoted to the head coaching position in the spring of 2005 after serving as hall-of-famer Bill Wright’s assistant.  Berkowitz was a top collegiate player for the Universities of Kentucky and New Mexico, respectively.


Back to the Lone Star State: Berkowitz returns to his old stomping grounds where he was an assistant coach for Texas A&M during the 2001-2002 season.


Super Six: The Wildcats return six players from the 2009-10 team including four seniors. The team has a strong nucleus and brings a lot of experience to the courts. Arizona’s seniors: Andres Carrasco, Geoff Embry, Jay Goldman and Borja Malo will all be looked at in singles and doubles competition. Junior Jason Zafiros returns as one of the Cats strong singles players and sophomore Frank Chen will also add experience to the team.


High Five to the Fresh: Head coach Tad Berkowitz is right on target with the signing of five freshmen to the 2010-11 roster. The team welcomes the addition of four freshmen right before the season: Sam Barr, Giacomo Miccini, Kieren Thompson and Andre Vidaller. Adding to the four is freshman Mario Urquidi who joined the team in the fall.  All five could play important roles in singles and doubles action and will add depth to the team’s roster.


Last Time Out: The Wildcats opened up the 2011 season at home last Saturday against the UC Riverside Highlanders. In doubles action, the two team’s split the first two matches, before the duo of freshman Kieren Thompson and senior Andres Carrasco clinched the point in a tiebreaker. The Wildcats went on to sweep all seven singles matches en route to a 7-0 victory.


2010 ITA Kick-Off Weekend: At last season’s ITA Kick-Off Weekend, the Wildcats played in Tuscaloosa, Ala. against Alabama on Jan. 30.  Arizona came up short 4-0, but bounced back on Jan. 31 against Auburn to earn a 4-0 victory.


Scouting the Hurricanes: The team holds a 1-1 overall record heading into the weekend after just two home dual matches. The Hurricanes topped North Florida 5-2 in their home opener before falling to Rice last weekend 5-2.


The Series vs. Miami: This will be the sixth meeting between the two schools, with the Hurricanes holding a 3-2 advantage over the Wildcats.


The Last Meeting: Miami 6, Arizona 1, Feb. 28, 1993: Miami bested Arizona 6-1 at Miami.


Sunday’s Match-Ups: The Wildcats will face either No. 10-ranked Texas A&M or No. 40-ranked Mississippi State.


Scouting the Texas A&M Aggies: Texas A&M currently holds a 2-0 record, after earning wins against Louisiana-Lafayette, 7-0 and Abilene Christian, 5-2. The Aggies have four players ranked in the ITA single’s rankings. Austin Krajicek is ranked No. 23, Jeff Dadamo is ranked No. 54, Colin Hoover is ranked No. 95, and Alexis Klegou is ranked No. 106. Texas A&M also has three doubles teams ranked in the ITA double’s rankings. Dadamo and Krajicek hold the No. 1 overall spot while Alberto Bautista and Hoover hold a No. 32 ranking and Niall Angus and Alexey Grigorov are ranked No. 49.


The Series vs. Texas A&M: If they do play each other, it will be the fourth meeting between the two schools, with the Aggies holding a 3-0 advantage over the Wildcats.


The Last Meeting: Texas A&M 4, Arizona 0, May 9, 2009: Texas A&M ended Arizona’s run in the second round of the NCAA tournament. Arizona was ranked 24, while the Aggies held a No. 15 ranking.


Scouting the Mississippi State Bulldogs: The team holds a 0-0 dual match record. The Bulldogs competed in the SEC Indoor Championships and the Auburn Invitational to kick-off the New Year.  Mississippi State has one player ranked in the ITA singles rankings. Louis Cant swings in at No. 60. The team also has a pair of double’s players ranked in the ITA double’s rankings. George Coupland and Zach White are ranked No. 53 and Coupland and Ilyushin are ranked No. 53.


The Series vs. Mississippi State: If they do play each other, it will be the second meeting between the two schools, with the Bulldogs holding a 1-0 advantage over the Wildcats.


The Last Meeting: Mississippi State 5, Arizona 3: March 3, 1991: Mississippi edged Arizona 5-3 at the Miami Invitational.


Stacked Non-Conference Schedule: As always, the Wildcats face a competitive non-conference schedule, 10 of the 15 non-conference teams started the spring season ranked in the ITA top 75 in the first rankings of the year. 

10) Texas A&M                     44) Miami

17) Oklahoma                        46) Indiana

40) Denver                              58) San Diego

41) Mississippi State           67) New Mexico State

43) Boise State                     73) Idaho


Tough Pac-10 Conference: The Pac-10 holds 50 NCAA Men's Team Titles.  A glance at the ITA rankings around the Pac-10 finds six of the seven teams ranked in the top 75.

2) USC


8) Stanford

19) Cal

26) Washington

32) Arizona


NCAA Year By Year Tournament Results:  

1996: (0-1): L, 4-2 to UC-Santa Barbara 

1998: (0-1): L, 4-3 to Arizona State 

2001: (0-1): L, 4-2 to Georgia Tech 

2003: (0-1): L, 4-1 to Boise State 

2004: (1-1): W, 4-3 over Florida State, L, 4-0 to Florida 

2006: (0-1): L, 4-1 to Colorado 

2009: (1-1): W, 4-0 over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, L, 4-0 to Texas A&M

2010: (0-1): L, 4-1 to Minnesota


2010 NCAA Run: The Wildcats advanced to the first round of the 2010 NCAA tournament for the eighth time in school history. Last season No. 30 Arizona fell to then-No.35 Minnesota 4-1 in the opening round. The Wildcats finished the season 13-11 (2-4 Pac-10) and finished the season ranked No. 31 in the ITA rankings.


Four Slammin’ Seniors: The Cats will be led by their four senior leaders, Andres Carrasco, Geoff Embry, Jay Goldman and Borja Malo. Andres “Nacho” Carrasco has reached the 50+ singles wins as a Wildcat. In his three years, he has a combined 54-30 singles record while holding a 29-19 doubles record. Goldman, who also enters his fourth year as a Wildcat holds an overall 40-32 singles record while tallying a 22-14 doubles record. Embry and Malo enter their second year as Wildcats, after transferring from Oregon, and the University of Georgia, respectively.


A “Too Good” Duo: As the lone junior on the team Jason Zafiros has established himself as one of the Wildcats most consistent singles players. As a freshman he finished with an impressive 22-4 overall singles record and tallied a 22-15 record last season. Sophomore Frank Chen enters his second season as a Wildcat. He will look to gain match experience and provide leadership on the court. Chen competed in seven fall matches.


All aboard: Four of the five freshmen arrive to Tucson from four different countries. Giacomo Miccini hails from Recanati, Italy; Andre Vidaller is from Santos, Brazil; Kieren Thompson is from Brisbane, Australia; while Sam Barr is from Whakatane, New Zealand. Mario Urquidi, who competed in fall action is a native of El Paso, Texas and finished 5-6 in singles action while competing in three fall tournaments.


Sweet Home History: Last season, the Wildcats finished 8-4 at the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center, including a 4-3 win against No. 10 UCLA for the first time in school history. This season the Wildcats are 1-0.


Fall Season: The Wildcats participated in six tournaments in the fall.  The team competed in the NMSU Fall Invitational, the D'Novo/ITA All-American Championships, the Aztec Invitational, the ITA West Regional Championships, the UNLV Invitational, and the Lakewood Ranch Collegiate Invitational. Freshman Mario Urquidi clinched the Aztec Invitational main draw singles title while junior Jason Zafiros won the back draw singles title. Senior Jay Goldman fell in the finals of the singles main draw at the UNLV Invitational while senior Andres Carrasco fell in the finals of the singles main draw at the Lakewood Ranch Collegiate Invitational.


Up Next: The Wildcats will face the winner/loser of the No. 10-ranked Texas A&M and No. 40-ranked Mississippi State match Sunday. Live scoring and video can be found at, courtesy of Texas A&M Athletics.

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