Men's Tennis Opens 2003 Season Hosting Santa Clara

Jan. 21, 2003

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ON TAP: The Arizona State men's tennis team (0-0) will open their 2003 campaign at the Whiteman Tennis Center hosting Santa Clara (0-0) on Sunday, January 26 at 12:00 p.m. This will be only the second meeting between the two schools with ASU holding a 1-0 advantage after a 6-1 win in Tempe back in 2001.

2002 RECAP: Finished with a 12-10 overall record...fifth in the Pacific-10 Conference with a 3-4 record...advanced to NCAA Regional action for the 11th time under Lou Belken and the eighth time in the past nine years...ASU fell 4-2 to No. 22 Minnesota in the first round of the regional in Malibu, Calif....posted a 9-6 non-conference record and a 9-3 record at home...defeated Arizona for the 12th straight year at home as well as sweeping the series for the second straight season...senior Matt Klinger earned second-team All-Pac-10 honors...Klinger ended his career with 79 singles wins after advancing to the NCAA singles championship...Klinger finished the year ranked 47th, while Klinger and Mitchell Bowen ended the season ranked 22nd in doubles...senior Mirza Duranovic claimed 102 career singles victories...in its 12 victories, ASU outscored its opponents 68-15...Belken ended the year one win shy of 250...ASU is also one win shy of 600 victories in the program's history (since 1962)...with the exception of one dual, all of ASU's losses were by teams ranked in the top-18...final ranking was 37th...earning Pac-10 All-Academic Team honors were Olivier Charroin (first) and Mirza Duranovic (honorable mention).

HEAD COACH LOU BELKEN: In his 21st season as head coach, Lou Belken has produced 14 All-Americans and 15 All-Pac-10 selections, including NCAA singles champion and ATP professional Sargis Sargsian. Belken is also 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 years, including five berths in the NCAA round of 16 and one quarterfinal appearance. Academically since 1991, Belken has placed 15 players on the Pacific-10 All-Academic teams and has placed several players on the GTE Academic All-American teams.

DEVILS IN THE RANKINGS: As a team, Arizona State is No. 41 in the Omni Hotels Collegiate Tennis Preseason Rankings, administered by the ITA. In doubles, the duo of Olivier Charroin and Chis Stewart are No. 17

SCHEDULE STRENGTH: Once again the Devils will face a strong non-conference slate along with the always powerful Pac-10 Conference. Ten ASU opponents earned NCAA bids last year, while eight of this year's opponents are ranked in the top-25. The Pac-10 comprises four of the nation's top-10 teams and five of the eight Pac-10 teams are ranked in the top-20.

DOUBLES SUCCESS: The doubles team of juniors Olivier Charroin and Chris Stewart's success last season has continued into this season. The pair, currently ranked No. 17 in the country by the ITA, posted an 8-1 mark in the fall after winning the Southern California Regional doubles championship. The pair then went on to the ITA National Indoors doubles championship where they advanced to the second round. Dating back to last season, Charroin and Stewart are a combined 24-6. They recorded a perfect 12-0 dual record at the No. 3 slot, finishing at 16-5 overall with a team-leading 8-4 Pac-10 record.

HOME SWEET HOME: Over the past five seasons, Arizona State holds an impressive 47-17 (.734) overall dual record at the Whiteman Tennis Center, and is 35-15 (.700) against non-conference teams.

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