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SDSU Men's Tennis Heads North for a Pair of Weekend Matches in Gem State

Junior Bartosz Golas and the Aztecs head north to face Idaho and Boise State this weekend.
Junior Bartosz Golas and the Aztecs head north to face Idaho and Boise State this weekend.

March 6, 2008

SAN DIEGO -

SDSU Men's Tennis Weekly Release in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

SDSU MEN'S TENNIS HEADS NORTH FOR A PAIR OF WEEKEND MATCHES IN GEM STATE
* The 52nd-ranked San Diego State men's tennis team hits the road for a pair of matches in Boise, Idaho, this weekend when it squares off against the University of Idaho and Boise State. The Aztecs will take on the Vandals in a neutral-site clash on Friday, March 7, before locking horns with the No. 40 Broncos the following day on March 8. Both contests are scheduled for a 1 p.m. MST start at the Appleton Tennis Center on the BSU campus.

SDSU (4-4) split two matches at home last week, downing then-No. 53 Fresno State, 5-2, on Feb. 28, before experiencing a reversal of fortune against 24th-ranked Rice by the same 5-2 count on March 3.

SCOUTING THE VANDALS
* The 2008 campaign has already been a busy one for Idaho (10-8, 2-1 Western Athletic Conference), which has played 18 duals since Jan. 18. The Vandals have fashioned a pair of four-match winning streaks during that span, but have dropped four of their last five outings, including a narrow 4-3 defeat at Eastern Washington on Wednesday.

Individually, Idaho is led by freshman Andrey Potapkin, who has regained the No. 1 spot in the UI singles lineup after missing seven matches due to injury from Feb. 9-Feb. 29. Potapkin has pocketed 18 victories overall on the season, sharing the team high with sophomore and fellow Muscovite Stansilav Glukhov. Potapkin and Glukhov have also combined for 13 wins in doubles competition.

At the controls for the Vandals is second-year head coach Jeff Beaman, who also leads the Idaho women's team. Prior to his arrival in the Palouse, Beaman was an assistant at TCU when the Horned Frogs captured the 2006 Mountain West Conference tournament title after defeating SDSU, 4-1.

SERIES HISTORY VS. IDAHO
* The Aztecs have never lost to the Vandals in four all-time meetings dating back to 1989. Friday's clash will be the first between the two schools since 1999, when the SDSU posted a 5-0 shutout at the Gaucho Tennis Classic in Santa Barbara, Calif.

The Aztecs are 36-14 (.720 percent) in neutral-site matches since 2002, including a 2-0 mark this season. The Scarlet and Black opened the 2008 campaign with a 7-0 blanking of UC Riverside at Indian Wells Tennis Garden on Jan. 20, and also knocked off Minnesota, 5-2, in Tucson, Ariz., on Feb. 16. Since 1989, SDSU has only had three seasons (1994, 1997, 2001) in which it posted a losing record on neutral courts.

SCOUTING THE BRONCOS
* Boise State (8-8, 1-1 WAC) has also faced a hectic schedule in 2008 with 16 matches of its own to date. The Broncos have won two straight, including a 6-1 upset of then-No. 38 William & Mary at home on March 3. BSU is undefeated in six home matches this season, but just a combined 2-6 away from Appleton Tennis Center.

Occupying the top spot on the Bronco singles ladder is the senior Luke Shields, who has earned a No. 59 ranking in the latest ITA singles poll on the strength of a 9-4 record in dual matches. Meanwhile, junior Clancy Shields, Luke's younger brother, checks in with a No. 55 ranking after winning four out of his last five matches at the No. 2 position. The Shields brothers also boast a 5-1 dual record in doubles and are ranked 41st in the ITA poll.

Head coach Greg Patton is in his 11th season at Boise State, which has captured back-to-back WAC championships en route to consecutive NCAA tournament appearances. His 1997 squad finished fifth in the country after reaching the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament.

SERIES HISTORY VS. BOISE STATE
* The Aztecs hold a 4-3 lead in the all-time series dating back to 1989. Last year, the Broncos edged the Scarlet and Black by a 4-3 margin at Aztec Tennis Center. In that contest, Boise State swept all three doubles matches and won three out of the first four duals in singles play to secure the victory.

LOOKING AHEAD
* Following this weekend's road trip, SDSU will have four days of rest before hitting a busy stretch in which it plays four matches in one week. On Thursday, March 13, the Aztecs welcome Cal Poly to The Mesa, while Yale visits "America's Finest City" on Sunday, March 16. SDSU will play host to another Ivy League school in Princeton in a St. Patrick's Day shootout on March 17, before heading west down Interstate 8 for a showdown with cross-town rival San Diego on Wednesday, March 19.

YOUTH SHALL BE SERVED IN `08
* After losing four seniors off its 2007 roster, including Mountain West Conference player of the year Markus Dickhardt and all-MWC performer Christian Groh, San Diego State has taken on a decidedly youthful appearance this season. The Aztecs possess just one junior on this year's squad to go along with five sophomores and four freshmen (one redshirt). While growing pains are to be expected, success has not eluded this youthful bunch either. After garnering MWC freshman of the year honors in 2007, Achim Ceban teamed with Bartosz Golas to capture the doubles crown at the National Collegiate Tennis Classic in January at Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Ceban also reached the singles final at the NCTC, while Golas was named MWC player of week for his efforts in both the tournament and the season opener against UC Riverside.

MORE YOUTHFUL TIDBITS
* Freshman Andre Feliz is enjoying a tremendous rookie campaign thus far in 2008, leading the Scarlet and Black with an 8-5 overall record in singles play, including a 6-2 mark in dual matches. Fellow classmate Danny Heidecker has also come on strong of late with three straight wins, including a dramatic victory over Rice's Chong Wang on March 3. In that contest, Heidecker was looking down the barrel of a 5-0 deficit in the third set, but the Wesel, Germany, native regrouped and weathered three match points to ultimately prevail, 6-1, 5-7, 7-6(4). Meanwhile, another German import, freshman Tim Schulz van Endert, has also experienced success this season, teaming with Achim Ceban for a 3-0 record at No. 3 doubles.

LOOKING FOR THE RIGHT COMBINATION
* When Achim Ceban combined with sophomore transfer Jordan Colman at the No. 3 doubles position against Minnesota on Feb.16, it marked the 14th different tandem utilized by head coach Gene Carswell this season. However, that figure should not seem surprising. After all, SDSU employed 21 different pairings last year, even with a veteran cast.

CARSWELL IN CHARGE
* Gene Carswell is in his 10th season at San Diego State and fifth as head coach of the Scarlet and Black. In four-plus seasons at the helm, the Aztecs' mentor has guided SDSU to three straight Mountain West Conference regular-season titles, while compiling an overall record of 63-35 (.643) in the process. In each of the past three years, the native San Diegan has taken home MWC coach of the year accolades, leading San Diego State to a 17-0 league mark during that stretch. Prior to his present duties, Carswell was an Aztec assistant for five years from 1998-2003, earning a pair of ITA regional assistant coach of the year honors in 2001 and 2003.