April 22, 2009
Date: April 23 through April 26
Time: All Day
Location: Ojai, Calif.
Match Data: The Wildcats (17-5, 2-4 Pac-10) head into the Pac-10 Championships well rested as they have not played a match since April 11th against UCLA… Arizona will send seven players to the tournament (Francois VanderMerwe, Ravid Hazi, Pat Metham, Jay Goldman, Andres Carrasco, David Humphreys and Ola Bakke … This will be the final tune up for the Wildcats before the NCAA Tournament.
The Rankings: In the latest ITA collegiate rankings, Arizona is listed at No. 22 overall. Individually sophomore Jay Goldman is ranked No. 62 in singles.
Arizona Head Coach Tad Berkowitz…will begin his fourth season at the helm for the Wildcats. He currently has a record of 45-41. Berkowitz 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, 34, was a top collegiate player for the universities of Kentucky and New Mexico, respectively. Berkowitz began his coaching career in 1999 as an assistant coach at Alabama for three seasons. In his final year he helped the Crimson Tide earn a No. 18 national ranking and a berth in the NCAA Championships. He is assisted by Tom Lloyd, who is in his fourth year in that capacity.
Home Sweet Home: The Wildcats love playing at the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center. On the season, the Wildcats are 14-1 when they play at home. Victories include Northern Arizona, Nevada, South Florida, Saint Mary’s, San Francisco, Texas Tech, San Diego, New Mexico State, UC Irvine, Cal Poly, Iowa, Northwestern and Stanford. Their only loss at home this season a 4-2 loss to No. 44 California last Saturday.
Biggest Win in Program History?: Last Friday’s 4-2 win over No. 8 Stanford, will go down as one of the biggest, if not the biggest win in program history. With the Cardinal leading the Pac-10 in most players individually ranked, it was the Wildcats who looked unbeatable. The win over Stanford marked the program’s third win in 63 matches.
As Good as Gold: Sophomore Jay Goldman is having some season. Currently, Goldman is ranked No. 68 in singles play, the only Wildcat ranked in singles. The Worcester, Mass. native owns a 10-6 record in position No.1. In doubles, Goldman has been paired with Ravid Hazi (4-4), Ola Bakke (2-1), Pat Metham (1-0) and Jason Zafiros (0-1). Goldman also received the Pac-10 Men’s Player of the Week for March 9-15 for his efforts against Cal Poly and No. 52 Iowa. Goldman upset No. 50 Bradley Klahn of Stanford 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 on Friday April 3.
The Nacho Man: Sophomore Andres Carrasco is second on the team with most wins in singles play. To date, the Cabrils, Barcelona native is 16- 5 (2-0 in position No. 2), (8-4 in position No. 3) and (6-1 in position No. 4). Carrasco has only teamed with Arango and together has 9-3 doubles record. Carrasco has had a seven-match singles winning streak. Carrasco is the third Wildcat to receive the Pac-10 Men’s Tennis Player of the Week for Feb. 16-22. Carrasco’s 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 win over Stanford’s No. 102 Richard Wire clinched the victory for the Wildcats, in what is one of the biggest wins in program history.
Beauty of the Beast: Junior Pat Metham is quietly having a great year in position No. 5 The Wellington, New Zealand native owns a 11-7 record in position No. 5 and 3-0 record in position No. 4 for an overall record of 14-5. Metham and senior Francois VanderMerwe are ranked at No. 80 in doubles play and have a 7-5 record when playing in position No.1. The Beast, like many of his teammates, had quiet the singles winning streak. Metham had a seven-match winning streak snapped this past weekend.
Gaining Experience: Freshman Ola Bakke will continue to gain college experience this week at the Pac-10 Championships. The Oslo, Norway, native owns a 4-2 singles record while playing in position No. 6. He played in back-to-back matches against UCLA and USC. Bakke has also seen action in doubles teaming with Jay Goldman (2-1) and Ravid Hazi (1-3).
Hot Sauce: Junior Ravid Hazi will look to continue a solid junior season with a strong showing at the Pac-10 Championships. The Rishon LeZion, Israel, native has played in positions No. 2 (1-0), position No.3 (4-4) and position No. 4 (6-6). Hazi has also seen action in doubles, teaming with Jay Goldman (4-4), Ola Bakke (1-3), Andres Arango (1-0), Pat Metham (0-2) and Francois VanderMerwe (0-2).
Some New (Volunteer) Coaching Help: This year Arizona is pleased to have ATP all-pro Taylor Dent as a volunteer assistant coach throughout the season. Dent, who was ranked as the No. 21 player in the world on August 8th 2005, suffered a back injury which caused him to miss most of the past seasons. After having successful surgery, Dent was contacted by good friend and former coach Tom Lloyd, now an assistant with Arizona, who extended the coaching invitation. Dent, while working on rehabbing his back, will coach the Wildcats on specific and individual techniques. Dent is known as an aggressive serve-and-volleyer with one of the biggest serves on the tour, tying Andy Roddick for the record of fastest serve at 155 mph.
Fall Season: The Cats participated in six fall tournaments during the fall semester...In the Aggie Fall invite, the Costa Mesa Futures, the Arizona Fall Classic, the All-American Championships, the ITA West Regional Championships and the UNLV Classic … In Las Cruces, N.M., senior Francois VanderMerwe defeated Brian Joiner from ACU 6-1, 6-4 in the Crimson Singles Flight (Final Round) … In the first annual Arizona Classic, freshman Jason Zafiros won the singles round … In Las Vegas, VanderMerwe lost to Maxime Adam of Fresno Pacific 6-3, 6-3 in the semifinals … In Malibu, Calif., at the ITA West Regional Championships, four Wildcats- Jay Goldman, Pat Metham, Andres Arango, Andres Carrasco- all advanced to the Round of 16.
Up Next: Arizona will be headed to the NCAA Tournament next week for the first time since 2004. The Wildcats will find out where they play next Tuesday, April 28 at 2:20 p.m. Tucson Time. You can walk the selection show live on ESPNEWS.
Singles and Doubles Results for No. 22 Arizona Wildcats (Overall team record, 17-5, 2-4 Pac-10):
Player #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6
Andres Arango 3-0 12-6 - - - -
Ola Bakke - - - - - 4-2
Andres Carrasco- 2-0 8-4 6-1 - -
Geoff Embry - - - - - -
Jay Goldman 11-6 - - - - -
Ravid Hazi - 1-0 4-4 6-6 - -
David Humphreys- - - - - -
Pat Metham - - - 3-0 11-7 -
Francois VanderMerwe- - - - - -
Jason Zafiros - - - - 4-0 14-1
VanderMerwe/ 7-7 - -
Goldman/Hazi - 2-2 2-2
Arango/Zafiros - - 1-2
Hazi/Arango - 1-0 -
Goldman/Zafiros - 0-1
VanderMerwe/ 0-2 - -
Arango/Carrasco- 8-4 1-0
Goldman/Bakke- - 2-1
Goldman/Metham- - 1-0
Metham/Hazi - 0-2 -
Hazi/Bakke - - 1-3