Men's Tennis Competes At The Pac-10 Championships
April 23, 2002
ON TAP: The Arizona State men's tennis team (12-9, 3-4 Pac-10), who closed the regular season in a strong fashion by winning their last three duals, including sweeping the Arizona series with a 4-3 win over the Wildcats, head over to Ojai, California to participate in the Pac-10 Championships, Wednesday, April 25 through Sunday, April 29.
REGIONAL ANNOUNCEMENT: The Sun Devils will find out where they will be playing in the postseason when the NCAA announces the regional sites, Thursday, May 2 at 3:30 p.m. It will mark the eighth time in the past nine seasons that ASU has made a postseason appearance.
LAST TIME ON THE COURT: Arizona State capped the end of the regular season with two wins, a 6-1 victory over Cal Poly and a 4-3 win over rival Arizona. Against Cal Poly in doubles action, ASU opened the dual by claiming the doubles point for the early 1-0 lead. On the No. 1 court, Arizona State's 15th-ranked duo of Mitchell Bowen and Matt Klinger quickly dispatched Cal Poly's Greg Levy and Mike Marquez, 8-0. The ASU tandem of Olivier Charroin and Chris Stewart claimed the doubles point on the No. 3 court with an 8-4 score, while Clinton Letcher and Pim Van Mele also ended their doubles match by an identical, 8-4 score. In singles, Klinger came off the No. 1 court with a 6-1, 6-4 win, while Van Mele also won in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1. Letcher gained another quick point for the Sun Devils with a 6-2, 6-2 win. ASU would collect the final two points with identical 6-4, 6-1 victories on the No. 5 and 6 courts by Charroin and Jonathan Stott respectively. Against Arizona, the Sun Devils dominated the doubles side, earning the point behind the duo of Klinger and Bowen, who defeated UA's Steven Capriati and Carl Hagman. Van Mele and Letcher knocked off Whi Kim and Roeland Brateanu 8-6, while Stewart and Charroin completed the doubles sweep by beating Tom Lloyd and Colin O'Grady 8-3. On the singles side, Capriati got a measure of revenge for his doubles defeat by beating Klinger 7-6 (5), 0-6, 6-3. Letcher then took out Arizona's Tom Lloyd 6-4, 6-3, and Mirza Duranovic beat Hagman 6-3, 6-2. The Wildcats made it close with Brateanu's 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 win over Charroin. However, Van Mele's victory over Kim assured ASU of the victory, as he won by a score of 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.
DOUBLES ADVANTAGE: Arizona State has won the doubles point in 16 of their 21 duals this year. They are a combined 39-20, including a 17-3 mark at the No. 3 slot. The 15th-ranked duo of Mitchell Bowen and Matt Klinger hold a 12-8 record at the No. 1 slot and a 13-8 overall record. At the No. 2 and 3 positions, Olivier Charroin and Chris Stewart carry an impressive 14-4 dual record and 15-4 overall.
HEAD COACH LOU BELKEN: In his 20th season as head coach, Lou Belken has produced 14 All-Americans, including NCAA singles champion and ATP professional Sargis Sargsian. Belken also becomes only the 12th coach (currently only the second active) in Arizona State athletic history to achieve the 20 season milestone. Belken, the 1999 Pacific-10 Conference Coach of the Year and Region VIII Coach of the Year, has guided the Sun Devils to NCAA postseason berths in 11 of the last 15 seasons, including a berth into the NCAA round of 16 in 1988, '90, '91 (quarterfinals), '95 and '99.
HOME SWEET HOME: Over the past five seasons, including a 9-3 record this year, Arizona State holds a 69-28 (.711) overall dual record at the Whiteman Tennis Center.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: Senior Mirza Duranovic has claimed 102 career singles victories ... senior Matt Klinger holds a .672 career winning percentage in singles, recording a 78-38 mark ... in its 12 victories this year, ASU has outscored its opponents 68-15 ... Coach Lou Belken is just one win shy of 250 ... with the exception of one dual, all of ASU's losses have been by teams ranked nationally in the top-18 ... ASU finished tied for fifth in the Pac-10 Conference with a 3-4 mark..