Cardinal Men's Tennis Prepares For Challenging Spring Break

March 17, 2005

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COMING UP: The No. 9 ranked Stanford men's tennis team faces a busy spring break week, playing four dual matches in six days against some of the nation's top competition. The run begins on Monday when the Cardinal hosts local rival Santa Clara at the Taube Tennis Center at 1:30 pm. Coach Whitlinger's squad then hits the road for a Wednesday match against No. 1 ranked Baylor, before starting Pac-10 conference play on the weekend with away matches against No. 17 ranked Washington and No. 65 Oregon.

LAST WEEK: The Cardinal had last week off after topping No. 67 ranked William & Mary at the Taube Tennis Center on March 2, and posting a very successful showing at the Pacific Coast Doubles Championship in La Jolla. The No. 2 ranked doubles tandem of Senior Sam Warburg and junior KC Corkery recorded six straight wins at the Pacific Coast Doubles Championship, and became the first Cardinal tandem to win the prestigious open title since 1999. As one of the tournament's top seeds, the duo had a bye into the Round of 64 and recorded solid victories over Pepperdine's Pedro Rico and Scott Doerner and Cal's Patrick Briaud and Conor Niland before knocking off Brett Joelson and Ante Matijevic of Texas A&M in the final. Three other Stanford tandems competed in the tournament, with two of them winning first round contests. Senior Phil Sheng and freshman Phil Kao won their first round match before falling to USC alums Daniel Langre and Ruben Torres in the Round of 64, while sophomores Eric McKean and James Wan also advanced to the second round before losing to UCLA's Mathieu Dehaine and Kris Kwinta. The duo of junior Jon Wong and sophomore David Ryan went 2-2 in the tournament, advancing to the quarterfinals of the consolation bracket.

STANFORD IN THE RANKINGS: Following a brief stay at the No. 11 spot, the Cardinal jumped to No. 9 in the most recent team rankings released by the ITA on March 15th ... After several impressive victories, Sam Warburg jumped from No. 6 to No. 2 in the singles rankings released on March 8th, while KC Corkery moved up nine spots to No. 22. Phil Sheng also remained in the singles rankings, checking in at No. 93 ... The tandem of Warburg and Corkery are the No. 2 ranked duo in the doubles rankings.

CARDINAL NOTES: Senior Sam Warburg has jumped to No. 2 in the ITA singles rankings following an impressive first half of the season. Warburg has won 11 of his last 12 dual match contests, and has posted a 13-2 mark against nationally ranked opposition this season. His overall record stands at 21-4 ... Five of Junior KC Corkery's last six singles matches have come against ranked opposition, and he has posted a 3-1 mark in those contests. His match against then-No. 9 ranked Rylan Rizza of Virginia at the National Team Indoor Championship did not finish ... After winning his first seven contests in dual matches to begin the season, senior Phil Sheng has struggled as of late, losing his last five singles contests. Sheng is currently ranked No. 93 in the ITA rankings ... Since moving to the No. 4 singles position, sophomore James Wan has posted a perfect 8-0 mark in dual match play. Wan, the 2004 Pac-10 Co-Freshman of the Year, is 10-2 in dual matches and 16-5 overall ... Coach Whitlinger mixed up the bottom of his lineup against William & Mary, as sophomore Eric McKean played at the No. 5 spot and freshman Phil Kao played at the No. 6 spot for the first time this season. Both players registered victories at their new positions ... The doubles pairing of McKean and Wan recorded its first win over ranked opposition, handing No. 48 ranked Alex Cojanu and Jeff Kader of William & Mary an 8-6 defeat on March 2nd ... The No. 2 ranked duo of Warburg and Corkery have rolled through the opposition since the beginning of the spring season. The tandem has won 17 straight matches since January 29th, and has not suffered a defeat since the final of the ITA National Indoor Championships in November, when they fell to the current No. 1 ranked duo of Scott Green and Ross Wilson from Ohio State. Warburg and Corkery have posted a 26-2 overall record, with an undefeated 12-0 mark against Pac-10 foes.

CORKERY AND WARBURG CAPTURE DOUBLES CHAMPIONSHIP: The duo of senior Sam Warburg and junior KC Corkery added another championship to go along with their NCAA doubles title from last season. The tandem received a No. 1 seed for the Pacific Coast Doubles Championship at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club, and followed through by becoming the first Stanford pairing since 1999 to win the title. Corkery and Warburg received a bye in the first round and won their Round of 64 match against Blake Meister and Eric Oijala of UC San Diego, 6-0, 6-2. The team's next three matches were played using pro-sets because of weather constraints, and the duo rolled through tandems from Texas A&M, San Diego State, and Pepperdine into the semifinals. Warburg and Corkery defeated Cal's Patrick Briaud and Conor Niland in the semifinals and claimed a hard fought victory over Texas A&M's Brett Joelson and Ante Matijevic in the final, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.

SCOUTING THE BRONCOS: Santa Clara's record stands at 6-7 and the Broncos are coming off of a 5-2 upset win over then-No. 52 ranked Oregon last Sunday. Taylor Bedilion has played at the No. 1 and No. 2 singles positions, posting a 7-6 record in dual matches this season. The Broncos host Eastern Washington on Friday before coming to The Farm on Monday.

SCOUTING THE BEARS: The defending national champions have not relinquished the No. 1 team ranking yet this season, and have posted a perfect 13-0 mark. The Bears are led by the nation's No. 1 singles player in Benedikt Dorsch, who is 9-0 in dual matches and has won 14 straight singles contests. Baylor will face Oklahoma and Oklahoma State this weekend, and will host Cal on Monday.

SCOUTING THE HUSKIES: Washington is currently ranked No. 17 and has posted an 11-3 record so far this season. Washington features three singles players ranked by the ITA, with Alex Vlaski ranked No. 26, Alex Slovic ranked No. 28, and Christoph Palmanshofer ranked No. 62. Vlaski is 9-2 in dual matches, while Palmanshofer has posted an 11-2 mark. The Huskies take on Pacific on March 20th.

SCOUTING THE DUCKS: The No. 65 ranked Ducks have dropped five straight dual matches, and enter the weekend with a 7-8 record. Oregon's top ranked singles competitor is Sven Swinnen, who checked in at No. 11 in the most recent ITA rankings and has posted a perfect 12-0 record in dual matches. The Ducks will take on Portland and Cal before hosting the Cardinal.

NEW FACES: The Cardinal welcome three newcomers to the squad as sophomore David Ryan, and freshmen Lee Chang and Phil Kao join the team. Kao claimed two straight singles title at the Northern California sectionals, and joins the squad as one of the top recruits in the nation. Chang is a veteran of the national youth championships, while Ryan is the only left-hander on the team and should contribute in doubles play.

COACHING STAFF: John Whitlinger assumes the head coaching duties this season, following Dick Gould's move to the Director of Tennis position. Whitlinger, a former All-American at Stanford, was coach Gould's assistant for 18 years and served the last five seasons as the associate head coach. David Hodge joins the staff as an assistant coach following two years as the top assistant at Colorado. Hodge played collegiate tennis at Baylor, and competed on the professional tour before beginning his coaching career. Volunteer assistant coach Dave Higaki returns to The Farm for his third season, and serves as director of the renown East Palo Alto Tennis and Tutoring Program.

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