Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Wildcats Open Pac-10 Play on the Road
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 23, 2011
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Related Links

March 23, 2011

Complete Release in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

Date: Friday, March 25, 2011 vs. No. 20 Washington

Time: 3:00 p.m.

Location: Seattle, Wash. at the Nordstrom Tennis Center


Date: Sunday, March 27, 2011 vs. Oregon

Time: 10:30 a.m.

Location: Eugene, Ore. at the Student Tennis Center


Match Data: The Wildcats (8-7, 0-0 Pac-10) open Pac-10 play on the road this weekend against Washington and Oregon. The first test for the Wildcats will be against the No.20-ranked Washington Huskies (13-4, 0-0 Pac-10) in Seattle at the Nordstrom Tennis Center on March 25 at 3 p.m. This will be the first road trip for the Wildcats since they traveled to the Blue/Gray Tennis Classic in Montgomery, Ala. in mid-February.


Swinging Into The Rankings: In this week's rankings the Wildcats dropped seven spots to No. 53. Senior Andres Carrasco is ranked No. 120 in the ITA singles rankings and he also 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.


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.


Last Time Out: The Wildcats hosted No. 41 Indiana at home on Tuesday, March 15 and dropped a 5-2 decision to the Hoosiers, marking Arizona's third lost at the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center this season. It was also the Wildcats' first back-to-back loss of the season since the ITA National Kick-Off weekend against Miami and Mississippi St. in January. On Tuesday, the Wildcats were swept in all three doubles matches for just the second time this year. In singles action, senior Andres Carrasco and freshman Giacomo Miccini clinched the Wildcats their only two points of the day against the Hoosiers.


Scouting the Huskies: The team holds a 13-4 (0-0 Pac-10) record heading into Friday's action. On Tuesday, Washington topped Santa Clara in Calif. 5-1, clinching five singles matches. The two teams did not play doubles. The Huskies are riding on a six-match winning streak heading into Pac-10 play. Washington has three players ranked in the ITA singles rankings. Kyle McMorrow is ranked at No. 52, Martin Kildahl is ranked at No. 71, and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan is ranked at No. 86. The Huskies have two pairs of doubles teams ranked in the ITA doubles rankings. Nedunchezhiyan along with McMorrow are ranked at No. 29 and the tandem of Tobi Obenaus and Kildahl are ranked at No. 68.


The Series vs. Washington: This will be the 25th meeting between the two schools, with the Huskies holding a 14-10 advantage over the Wildcats.


The Last Meeting: Washington 6, Arizona 1, April 2, 2010: Then No. 21-ranked Washington topped then No. 34-ranked Arizona 6-1 in Tucson, Ariz.  Current Wildcats, Borja Malo, Geoff Embry, and Andres Carrasco competed in doubles action, while Jason Zafiros, Goldman, Carrasco, and Embry competed in singles.


Sunday's Match-Up Data: In the second match of the weekend, the Wildcats will travel to Eugene, Ore. to take on the Oregon Ducks (9-5, 0-0 Pac-10) at the Student Tennis Center on Sunday, March 27 at 10:30 a.m.


Scouting the Ducks: Oregon currently holds a 9-5 record heading into Sunday's Pac-10 match-up. The Ducks are coming off a 5-1 loss to Cal Poly on Tuesday in San Luis Obispo, Calif. The Ducks are 6-1 at home this season with their lone loss coming against Denver, who the Wildcats defeated a little over a month ago.


The Series vs. Oregon: This will be the 17th meeting between the two schools, with the Wildcats holding a 13-3 advantage over the Ducks.


The Last Meeting: Arizona 5, Oregon 2, April 4, 2010: The Wildcats swept in all three doubles matches and three singles matches to clinch the win. In doubles action, current Wildcats, Geoff Embry and Jason Zafiros teamed up in the No. 2 spot, while the tandem of Andres Carrasco and Jay Goldman paired up in the No. 3 spot. Borja Malo competed in the No. 1 spot along with graduated senior Ravid Hazi. In singles action, then No. 115-ranked Carrasco, Zafiros and Embry all took care of business in singles action, with Carrasco clinching the match in a three-setter.


Freshmen Heating up: Arizona's freshmen have stepped up for the Wildcats this season. In Arizona's 15 matches, 14 in which they have competed in, the Wildcats have had at least two freshmen in their line-up. In six matches the Wildcats have had two in their line-up while seven matches the Wildcats have had at least three freshmen stepping up in the line-up. At the Blue/Gray Tennis Classic in their second match against Boise State, the Wildcat's started four freshmen in their singles line-up. Quick Stat: The Wildcats are 4-2 when starting two freshmen in the single's line-up, 3-4 when starting three freshmen, and 1-0 when starting four freshmen. Freshmen Mario the clincher Urquidi has been the closer for the Wildcats this season. In his eight dual matches that he has competed in, the El Paso, Texas native is 6-2 and has clinched four matches for the Wildcats. Arizona's other four freshmen, Sam Barr holds a 1-0 record, while Giacomo Miccini is tallied at 3-3, Kieren Thompson holds a 6-6 record, and Andre Vidaller holds an 8-5 record in singles dual matches played.


The Stick Man: Senior Geoff Embry will be playing against his former team on Sunday when the Wildcats take on Oregon. The Phoenix, Ariz. native competed for the Ducks in his first two years of college. In the 2006-07 season Embry posted a 14-8 record in singles play during the dual match season for the Ducks. In the 2007-08 season the senior posted a 9-12 record in dual match action before coming to Arizona in the 2008-09 season.


Cats On the Road: The Washington-Oregon road trip will be the first true road test for the Wildcats this season. The Wildcats have competed on the road this season but just at neutral sites, tallying a 1-4 record. Last season the Wildcats finished 2-4 on the road.


Against the Pack: Cleaning the slate, the Wildcats kick-off the Pac-10 season against Oregon and Washington. Last season the Wildcats finished with a 2-4 record and a fifth place tie in the Pac-10.


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.

3) USC

8) Stanford

12) Cal

13) UCLA

20) Washington

53) 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.


50+Milestones: Junior Jason Zafiros has just passed the 50+ milestones for singles wins. The Bradenton, Fla. native has passed the milestone with 56 wins. Senior Jay Goldman is just two singles win shy of tying the mark.


60+Milestones: Senior Andres Carrasco has now reached a new milestone. The Cabrils, Barcelona, Spain native has 64 singles wins in his Wildcat career.


Three Wins Shy of 70: Head coach Tad Berkowitz is three wins shy of reaching 70 wins as Arizona's head coach. In his sixth season as Arizona's head coach, Berkowitz currently holds a 67-61 record.


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 7-3.


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 NMSU Fall 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 continue Pac-10 play at home next weekend against California and Stanford. It will be the last two home matches of the season for Arizona. The team will take on California on April 1 at 1:30 p.m. before taking on Stanford on April 3 at 1 p.m. 

Bear Down Challenge M Ten