October 27, 2006

Gauchos Shine in Fall Season; Returnees and Newcomers Make Their Marks in Tournaments

Oct. 27, 2006

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - - The UCSB men's tennis team has had a strong showing in its first three tournaments of the 2006-07 season, advancing several players to the final rounds of play in the All-American Tournament, the Bronco Classic and the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's Regionals.

"This is the most talented team I have coached at UCSB and I'm very excited about our season and chances of winning another Big West title and pushing deep into the NCAA Team Tournament this spring," UCSB Head Coach Marty Davis said.

The Gauchos started their season off at the All-American tournament hosted by the University of Tulsa. Junior Anders Dalskov did well for Santa Barbara, defeating University of Texas player Bernhard Deussner 6-3 and 6-2. Hejazi later lost to Trenton Hagan of Marquette 4-6, 6-2 and 6-0.
Freshman Philip Therp did quite well in singles play at the Bronco Classic, defeating his first three opponents. Therp handley beat Derek Drabble of University of Washington, who came in as the three seed, 7-5 and 6-0. Therp outlasted Fresno Pacific's Anthony Zarfiris in three sets 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (5) to move on to the quarterfinals where Therp defeated Piotr Dilaj of Boise Sate 4-6, 6-4, 6-1. Therp lost to the tournament winner no. 2 Andy Kuharsky of Washington in the semifinal match 7-5, 6-2.

Junior transfer Jack Hui also advanced to quarterfinal play for Santa Barbara in the Classic after defeating Gabriel Loredo in the first round of 32 with scores of 6-1, 6-4. The Hong Kong native defeated his second opponent, Eric Rubens of UC San Diego, 6-3, 6-4 before taking on no.5 Eric Roberson of Boise State. Roberson handed Hui his first loss of the tournament, defeating him 6-4, 6-3.

Therp and Hui made a fantastic doubles team in the Bronco Classic, advancing to the semifinals. The duo defeated Cooper Bryce and Brett Womack of Gonzaga 8-4 and followed it up with an 8-2 victor over Kevin McQuaid and Blaine Shields of host team Santa Clara. They also beat Holden Ching and Mike Ricks of University of Washington 9-8 (7) before losing in the semifinals to no. 4 Boise State pair Piotr Dilaj and Eric Roberson 8-1.

Sophomore Max Taylor lost his flight A singles match against Brigham Young's Cale Planck 6-4, 6-3 and dropped his first consolation match against Washington's Mike Ricks 6-4, 6-2 before defeating Oregon player Geoff Embry 7-6(9), 4-6, 1-0(11-9).

Freshman Josh Finkelstein lost in the first round of flight B singles play to Cal's Vaclav Burger 7-6, 7-6 and UC Davis player Michael Chin 6-1, 6-3 before ending the tournament on a high note, defeating Washington's Holden Ching 6-4, 6-2.

Freshman Nigel Barton, out of San Jose, Costa Rica, lost in his first round of flight b singles play to Roberto Bianco of Fresno Pacific 7-5, 6-4 but defeated UC Santa Cruz's Marc Vartabedian 6-7(0), 6-3, 1-0(10-7). Finkelstein and Taylor paired up for flight b doubles play and lost to Fresno Pacific's Roberto Bianco and Petr Sitnikov 8-6.

At the Intercollegiate Tennis Regionals in Malibu, Calif., UCSB had great success against some of the top tennis teams in the country.

Hui defeated USC's Jason McNaughton, the fourth-ranked junior in the country, 4-6, 6-3, and 6-3 to advance to the round of 32, where he beat Arizona State player Matt Brooklyn, 6-1, 6-7, and 7-6. Hui lost in the round of 16 to UCLA's Mathieu Dehaine 6-0 and 6-3.

Sophomore Bijan Hejazi also advanced well into the tournament, defeating Ryo Sekiguchi of University of San Diego 6-,4, 4-6 and 6-3 and USC's no. 2 Kaes Van'thoff. 6-2 and 7-5. Hejazi lost in the final 16 round to eventual tournament champion Andre Begeman of Pepperdine 7-6 and 7-5.

Therp defeated his first opponent, Alex Labrosse of Arizona, 6-2 and 6-4 in the round of 64. He t hen lost to no. 1 Ben Kohlloeffel of UCLA 6-3, 6-0. Taylor lost to USC's Dejan Cvetkovic 7-6 and 6-1 in the first round of 64 before losing to USD player Charl Worlmarans 6-3 and 6-4 in the consolation round. Finkelstein also had some difficulty, losing 6-0 and 6-0 to USC's Jamil Al-Agba in the first round and Arizona's Francois VanderMerve 6-2 and 6-3 in the consolation bracket.

Junior Anders Dalskov lost in the first round to Pepperdine's Richard Johnson 7-6, 6-7 and 6-0 as well as to UC Riverside player Joe Cartledge 6-3, 2-6 and 11-9 in the consolation round.
In doubles play, Finkelstein and Nigel Barton lost to Loyola Marymount duo Phillips and Terrien 8-6 and Hejazi and Terp lost to Arizona State pair Miller and Matt Brooklyn 8-3. Anders Dalskov and Jack Hui defeated their first opponent, Loucks and Snyder of USC 9-8 before losing to Miller and Brooklyn in the final 16 8-5.
"The men's play at the ITA Regionals provided further evidence that the Gauchos are ready to compete with the nation's elite teams this season," Davis said. "Having two players reach the final 16 at Regionals was a record for UCSB. The Gauchos should head into their final fall tournament with growing confidence."

Next up for Santa Barbara are the SoCal Intercollegiate Tournament in Los Angeles, Calif. before playing host for the UCSB Classic.

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