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Tennis

UC Irvine Men Picking Up Steam

3/19/2015

2015 Tennis Release No. 10

The UC Irvine men's tennis team has won seven straight matches and nine of its last 10 heading into the final stretch of the regular season.

BIG WEST AT A GLANCE

UC Irvine Men On A Roll
The UC Irvine men’s tennis team has won seven straight matches and nine of its last 10, and now sits a season-high four games above .500 at 13-9 overall.  The Anteaters are in the midst of a 12-match homestand, and conclude it with a Saturday doubleheader against Green Bay and Eastern Washington.

Returning to the national rankings after a one-week hiatus, UCI is No. 75 in this week’s Intercollegiate Tennis Association poll.  The Anteaters have been ranked on four different occasions this season.  Junior Tyler Pham, the reigning Big West Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Week, has reeled off 13 consecutive wins in singles.

UCI recently added a match to its schedule.  The Anteaters will compete in the Oracle Collegiate Challenge on Sunday at Indian Wells Tennis Garden, site of the Big West Tournament next month.  An eight-team tournament, UCI is filling in for BYU who cannot play in Sunday’s finale.  UCI will meet up with either No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 28 Cal, No. 29 Columbia or Purdue depending on how BYU fares on the first two days of the tournament.

Women’s Teams Face Off Against Ranked Opposition
It’s a relatively light schedule in the Big West this week, but the women’s teams have some stiff challenges ahead of them.    Long Beach State and UC Irvine both play host to No. 23 Dartmouth, while the 49ers welcome in another Ivy League school in No. 40 Harvard.  The Anteaters also entertain No. 66 Denver.  Next Tuesday, UC Santa Barbara faces a ranked opponent at home in No. 54 Illinois.  CSUN, off to a 10-1 start, hosts Wyoming on Friday and then gets Dartmouth on Wednesday in hopes of continuing its solid season.  The Matadors started out 9-0, just falling short of the 2001 team which opened up 11-0.

Foursomes Ranked On Both Sides

The Big West is having a solid year in terms of four men’s and four women’s teams finding themselves ranked among the ITA top 75.  On the women’s side, Long Beach State is the leader at No. 31, followed by No. 59 UC Irvine, No. 70 UC Santa Barbara and No. 71 Hawai‘i.  The overall depth of the six men’s teams is also on display as No. 65 Cal Poly, No. 66 UC Santa Barbara, No. 68 UC Davis and No. 75 UCI are all bunched together.

Nguyen In Singles Rankings
Hawai‘i standout Cindy Nguyen, a 2014 first-team all-conference pick in singles as a freshman, is showing no signs of a sophomore slump.  She took down the nation’s No. 21-ranked singles player from Michigan two weeks ago, and has won seven of her last eight contests.

A Dozen Years At Indian Wells
Indian Wells Tennis Garden is hosting the Big West Men’s and Women’s Tennis Championship for the 12th consecutive year.  One of the premier facilities in the United States, also a host of the BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells will host all six men’s and nine women’s teams from April 23-26.

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