No. 24 California Travels to Florida for NCAA Regionals
May 11, 2005
WHAT'S ON TAP: The No. 24 Golden Bears (12-8 overall, 2-5 Pac-10) head to Coral Gables, Fla., for first round NCAA Regional action. Cal will battle Mississippi (13-9) on Friday, May 13 at 10 a.m. at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center. The winner will face the victor of ninth-seeded Miami and Florida Atlantic on Saturday, May 14 at 1 p.m., with the chance to advance to the Round of 16 in Athens, Ga., May 19-22.
2005 NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS: This year's NCAA Division I Women's Tennis Championships are being hosted by the University of Georgia in Athens, Ga. First- and second-round competition will be conducted May 13-15 with the winner of each site advancing to the team championships at the Dan McGill Tennis Complex. The teams will play a single-elimination tournament at 16 first- and second-round sites (four teams at each site) and the finals site (16-team bracket) to determine the national champion.
WINNING WAYS: Cal is one of three teams in the nation, along with UCLA and Stanford, to have competed in all 24 NCAA Championships since the Tournaments' inception in 1982. The Bears have reached the quarterfinal round in 16 team championships and earned NCAA semifinals berths in 1985, '94, '99, 2000 and '03. Cal competitors have also earned individual recognition as some of the best the nation has to offer, with the Bears capturing four doubles national titles since 1998.
SCOUTING THE REBELS: The Ole Miss women's tennis team, who captured their first ever SEC Western Division Championship in 2005, are back in the NCAA Championships for the first time since 2002. The Lady Rebels are led by Chloe Carlotti, who is ranked No. 38 in singles and owns a 15-7 record at No. 1 singles. Carlotti teams with junior Virginia Tomatis for a 17-5 record at No. 1 doubles and a No. 17 ranking. Mississippi is coached by Mark Beyers (32-36, 3rd year).
LEADING BY EXAMPLE: Cal's co-captains, junior Jessica Shu and freshman No. 4 Suzi Babos, are proving to be more than capable team leaders. No. 6 Babos leads the Bears with 30 wins, 17 of which have come over nationally-ranked opponents. In addition to compiling a 15-5 dual record as Cal's top singles player, Babos captured the singles titles from both the Cal Nike Invitational and ITA West Regional Championships. Shu is second on the team with 23 wins, including six consecutive victories to open the dual-match season, where she is currently 15-6.
VISICO ON A TEAR: Freshman Cristina Visico has been making some noise for the Bears on court six, where the Long Beach native has won 12-consecutive matches. Visico, who has compiled a 22-9 overall mark this year, has moved up in the ITA rankings this week to No. 94.
BROGAN AIMS FOR NO. 500: Head coach Jan Brogan is one win shy of her 500th career victory. Brogan, the third winningest active NCAA women's tennis coach, also has the fourth most wins of any coach in California history.
All-Time Winningest Cal Coaches Coach Years Record 1. Diane Ninemire (Softball) (1988-present) 799-379 2. Bob Milano (Baseball) (1978-1999) 688-644-4 3. Clint Evans (Baseball) (1930-1954) 487-196 4. Jan Brogan (Tennis) (1978-present) 499-204
PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS SUMMARY: After posting a 2-5 record in Pac-10 play, Cal traveled to Ojai, Calif., for the Pac-10 Individual Championships. Two freshman, Cristina Visico and Stephanie Kusano won their opening Round of 32 matches in the singles main draw, but neither were able to advance to the quarterfinals.
NCAA INDIVIDUAL TITLES: Freshman Babos was selected to compete in the 2005 NCAA Singles Championships, as announced by the NCAA Division I Women's Tennis Subcommittee May 5. Babos, ranked No. 8 in singles in the nation, will enter the tournament as the eighth seed. Fellow freshman Visico was selected as the seventh alternate for the west region.
PAC-10 AWARD WINNERS: Suzi Babos was named Pac-10 Women's Freshman of the Year, as voted on by Conference coaches. Babos, also honored as a first team All-Pac-10 pick, is joined by fellow freshman Stephanie Kusano, who received honorable mention All-Pac-10 honors. Babos is the second Golden Bear to receive the honor, following 2001's award winner Raquel Kops-Jones. Kusano, playing primarily from the No. 2 position, is 18-11 overall and 14-7 in dual matches. The Houston, Texas native is currently ranked No. 78 in the nation in singles.
ITA REGIONAL HONOREE: Suzi Babos was named the 2005 Intercollegiate Tennis Association Rookie Player of the Year for the Northwest Region. In addition, she was selected as the ITA Player to Watch from the Northwest, given to the competitor who has had an outstanding season and is expected to perform at a high level the rest of her career, as well as demonstrating strong sportsmanship and character. National winners for ITA awards will be announced May 22 in Athens, Ga.
Ranked Bears: Final individual rankings will be released June 3, 2005. The latest ITA individual rankings (as of May 2, 2005): Singles Doubles Suzi Babos - No. 8 (national) Suzi Babos and Stephanie Kusano - No. 37 (national) No. 1 (regional) Stephanie Kusano - No. 78 (national) Monica Wiesener - No. 15 (regional) Cristina Visico - No. 73 (national) No. 17 (regional)
BROGAN'S LEGACY: In her 25 years at Cal, Jan Brogan has molded the Golden Bear program into one of the best in the country, guiding the Bears to 23 NCAA appearances and 18 Top-10 finishes since 1982. She currently boasts a 499-204 (.710) dual match record, making her the fourth winningest coach in University of California history. Her continued dedication to excellence earned her the Wilson/ITA National Coach of the Year award in 1990, in addition to ITA Northwest Region Coach of the Year honors in 1988, 1991 and 1993.
ASSOCIATE HEAD COACH Amy Jensen: A former Cal singles and doubles All-American who is the only player in NCAA history to capture three consecutive NCAA doubles titles, Amy Jensen enters her fifth-year coaching at Cal and first as an associate head coach. The Australian native has a three-year letter-winner for the Bears (1996-2000), posting a career record of 105-52 in singles and 94-29 in doubles. Last year, Jensen was honored as the 2004 ITA Northwest Regional Assistant Coach of the Year.