No. 6 Men's Tennis Returns Home to Face ASU, Arizona

Feb. 20, 2008

No. 6 Men's Tennis Returns Home
Coming off a long week in Seattle while taking part at the USTA/ITA National Team Indoors, the sixth-ranked UCLA men's tennis team (7-1) returns home this week to host Arizona State (5-0) on Friday at 1:30 p.m., and Arizona (8-1) on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. UCLA owns a combined all-time record of 122-2 against the two schools (60-0 vs. Arizona / 62-2 vs. ASU). Admission is free to all regular-season home matches at the Los Angeles Tennis Center. Live stats can be accessed by clicking HERE

Bruins Nearly Stun Top-Ranked Virginia
UCLA came within a point of registering the biggest upset of the college tennis season last week, as the Bruins went toe-to-toe with top-ranked Virginia in the quarterfinals of the USTA/ITA National Team Indoors in Seattle. The Bruins won the doubles point and then took two more points in singles following wins by Holden Seguso (court No. 3) and Jeremy Drean (court No. 5). Virginia, however, won three singles matches of its own to tie the match at 3-3. The deciding point came down to the No. 1 spot, where top-ranked Somdev Devvarman of Virginia downed Bruin senior Harel Srugo, 6-7, 6-3, 6-4.

UCLA Goes 2-1 in Team Indoor Play
Although the Bruins lost to No. 1 Virginia in the quarterfinals of the Team Indoors, UCLA turned in a very solid showing in an extremely competitive event (13 of the 16 teams were ranked in the top 25). The Virginia loss was in the middle of a pair of solid wins over No. 9 Notre Dame and No. 21 Oklahoma State. UCLA opened up the tournament with a commanding 4-0 victory over the Fighting Irish. After taking the doubles point, UCLA got wins from Holden Seguso, Michael Look and Jeremy Drean to take the win. The Bruins capped off the event with a 4-3 victory over Oklahoma State. Freshman Nick Meister was the hero of that match, as his 4-6, 6-2, 6-0 victory over Anton Bobytskyi at No. 6 singles clinched a 4-3 win for the Bruins.

UCLA Doubles Duo Honored
For the first time in the history of the USTA/ITA National Team Indoors an all-tournament team was announced, and UCLA's Jeremy Drean and Michael Look made the squad at No. 3 doubles. Drean and Look went 3-0 over the weekend, helping the Bruins capture the doubles point in every match.

Bruins Up to No. 6
Following a strong showing at the Team Indoors, UCLA moved up from No. 8 to No. 6 in the ITA Team Rankings released on Wednesday. Individual rankings were also released for the first time in more than a month. Mathieu Dehaine is UCLA's highest ranked singles player, checking in at No. 25. He is followed by No. 28 Holden Seguso, No. 44 Harel Srugo and No. 100 Nick Meister. Dehaine and Seguso are also ranked No. 47 in doubles.

ITA Rankings (Top 25)
1. Virginia
2. Ohio State
3. Georgia
4. Mississippi
5. Texas
7. USC
8. North Carolina
9. Illinois
10. Duke
11. Baylor
12. Notre Dame
13. Tennessee
14. Florida
15. Oklahoma State
16. Florida State
17. Wake Forest
18. Louisiana State
19. Michigan
20. Alabama
21. VCU
22. Pepperdine
23. Tulsa
24. Rice
25. Texas A&M

Abid Still Out
The Bruins' 7-1 start to the season and No. 6 national ranking is quite an accomplishment. It's even more impressive when you consider that junior Haythem Abid, who is UCLA's No. 1 or 2 player when healthy, hasn't played since undergoing wrist surgery in the fall. His return to competition could come sometime in March. Abid posted a 24-5 overall singles record last season and was ranked No. 32 nationally to end the year.

Top 25 Opponents Loom Ahead
Tennis fans in Southern California are in for a treat in the next few weeks, as the Bruins will host four top 25 teams in the span of eight days. UCLA kicks off its four-match home stand with No. 24 Rice on Wednesday, March 5. The Bruins will then host No. 7 USC (March 6), No. 11 Baylor (March 10) and No. 10 Duke (March 12).

Head Coach Billy Martin
UCLA head coach Billy Martin is in his 15th season at the helm of the Bruin tennis program. Martin, the only active head coach to capture team titles as both a player and a coach, owns a 329-64 overall coaching record. In his 14 seasons, Martin has never had a team finish out of the top 5 at the NCAA Championships. He led UCLA to the school's 16th NCAA Championship in men's tennis back in 2005.

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