Men's Tennis Competes At The TCU Shootout

Jan. 29, 2003

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ON TAP: The Arizona State men's tennis team (1-0) will travel to Fort Worth, Texas Saturday and Sunday to compete in the four-team TCU Shootout. The Sun Devils will open against 17th-ranked Pepperdine (4-1) in a first round match on Saturday, February 1 at 12:00 p.m. The other first round match will feature the host Horned Frogs against Washington. On Sunday, the respective winners and losers will play each other to finish the shootout.

SANTA CLARA RECAP: The Devils opened the 2003 campaign with a decisive 6-1 victory over Santa Clara in Tempe. ASU got out of the gate quickly by taking two of the three doubles matches for the first point. ASU's No. 2 team of Clinton Letcher and Pim Van Mele were first off as they won easily with an 8-0 win over Santa Clara's Rick Ruso and Francisco Zepponi. Olivier Charroin and Chris Stewart won the doubles point with an 8-3 victory over SC's Michael Buggemann and Erich Chen. In singles action, ASU won five of the six matches all in straight sets. Van Mele was first off on the No. 2 court with an easy 6-1, 6-0 win over Zepponi, while Charroin quickly followed with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Chen on the No. 1 court. The Devils clinched the dual when Letcher also won in straight sets on the No. 4 court over SC's Mattioli, 6-4, 6-2. Ryan Eveloff gave the Devils their fifth point with a 7-6 (3), 6-3 victory over Ruso, while Ryan McBride capped the dual with a 7-6 (10-8), 7-6 (5) win over Ben Hidalgo.

250/600: With the 6-1 victory against Santa Clara two historical records were set. Head coach Lou Belken achieved his 250th career win, while Arizona State earned the 600th win in the program's history.

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 Rankings, administered by the ITA. In doubles, the duo of Olivier Charroin and Chris 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 25-6. They are 1-0 this year at the No. 1 slot and recorded a perfect 12-0 dual record at the No. 3 slot last year, 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 48-17 (.738) overall dual record at the Whiteman Tennis Center, and a 36-15 (.706) mark against non-conference teams.

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