April 12, 2007

UCSB Hosts Three Matches in Important Weekend of Big West Tennis

April 12, 2007

This Week
Friday, April 13, 2007 at 1:30 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. the University of Denver Pioneers
UCSB's Recreation Center Courts

Saturday, April 14, 2007 at 1:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. UC Irvine Anteaters
UCSB's Recreation Center Courts

Sunday, April 15, 2007 at 1:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. UC Riverside Highlanders
UCSB's Recreation Center Courts

The Gaucho Record
UC Santa Barbara enters its three weekend matches with an overall record of 3-15 and a Big West mark of 2-1. On Friday, April 6, the Gauchos ended a nine-match losing streak by easily winning at Pacific, 6-1. On Saturday UCSB lost at Fresno State.

Key Big West Matches Highlight Important Weekend
This weekend's matches against UC Irvine and UC Riverside are huge and will go a long way towards determining where teams are seeded at the 2007 Big West Tournament scheduled for Friday-Sunday, April 27-29 at Indian Wells. If the Gauchos can sweep their matches against the Anteaters and Highlanders, they would almost undoubtedly be the tournament's top seed. UCSB is currently 2-1 against Big West opponents while UCI is 2-0 and UCR is 1-1 in league. The Gauchos defeated UC Davis and Pacific but lost to Cal Poly. The loss to the Mustangs, however, came when Santa Barbara was missing three starters. UC Irvine will enter the weekend with a perfect 2-0 mark in league play and a win over the Gauchos would put them

Gauchos Getting Healthy In The Nick Of Time
UCSB, which had a horrific run of injuries in February and March, is finally starting to get healthy. Junior Jack Hui and freshman Philip Therp, expected to play No. 2 and No. 3 respectively, each missed several matches with wrist injuries. Therp, a two-handed right hander, broke a bone in his left wrist during a Feb. 9 match against Boise State and missed 10 matches before returning on Mar. 25 against Dartmouth. Although is now playing one-handed at No. 3, he has won two of his three matches since returning. Hui missed several matches with an injured right wrist. He returned to play doubles on Mar. 25 against Dartmouth and then last weekend he returned to the singles lineup at No. 4 and split a pair of matches. Senior Elad Stern, the starter at No. 5, injured his right shoulder and will not return this season.

Dalskov Makes Good At No. 2
Junior Anders Dalskov, expected to start at No. 4 this season for the Gauchos, was thrust into the No. 2 spot because of the injuries to Hui and Therp. Dalskov, who also played a match at No. 1, has held his own at No. 2 with a 5-8 record. Overall the native of Hoersholm, Denmark has gone 8-10 in dual matches this season. He was a perfect 2-0 at his more familiar No. 4 spot before the injuries started to mount. In 2006, Dalskov was named Second Team All-Big West in singles after posting a 16-8 record while playing primarily No. 3 and No. 4.

Finkelstein Seizes The Opportunity
Redshirt freshman Josh Finkelstein was expected to add depth to the UCSB roster this season but with the myriad injuries to the starters, he has become a regular in the starting lineup. Finkelstein, a native of Hong Kong, has gone 5-11 this season, but he has heated up recently, winning his matches last weekend at Pacific and Fresno State. Another Gaucho who was thrust into the hot seat because of injuries was sophomore transfer Nigel Barton. Barton, who played his freshman season at Tulane, has played mostly at No. 4, No. 5 and No. 6, and has gone 4-11. At No. 5 and No. 6 he is 4-7.

Big West Right Around The Corner
UCSB will complete the regular season at home on Sat., April 21 when it hosts Sacramento State. The following weekend, the Gauchos will try to defend their Big West Championship when they travel to Indian Wells for the league's championship tournament from April 27-29. As it has returned to a semblance of healthy, Santa Barbara has become one of the teams to beat at the league tourney.