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No. 2 Men's Tennis Travels to Texas; Concludes Regular Season This Weekend

April 13, 2006

Malibu, Calif. -

This Week: The nationally-ranked Pepperdine men's tennis team concludes its regular season when it travels to the Lone Star State to take on nationally-ranked Texas on Friday, April 14 at 4 p.m. in Austin and then faces nationally-ranked Texas A&M on Saturday, April 15 in a 4 p.m. match in College Station.

Pepperdine remains nationally-ranked at No. 2 for the eighth consecutive week, while the Texas Longhorns have remained at the No. 3 spot for four weeks. The Aggies of Texas A&M moved up one spot to No. 18 in the latest ITA rankings.

The Waves are 26-1 on the season while the Longhorns are 16-1 and face Rice University on Wednesday. The Aggies (13-7) head to Lubbock, Texas to face Texas Tech on Thursday before returning home to host the Waves.

Live Stats will be available for both matches at www.pepperdinesports.com

San Diego State Recap: Recording its 12th consecutive win, the No. 2 men's tennis team handed No. 56 San Diego State a 5-2 defeat on Saturday afternoon at the Aztec Tennis Center in San Diego, Calif.The doubles kicked off with the No. 21 Aztec duo of Benedict Stronk and Markus Dickhardt upsetting the No. 1 nationally-ranked pair of Scott Doerner and Andre Begemann 8-3. The Waves answered back and clinched the doubles point after wins on courts two and three. No. 52 Ivor Lovrak and Pedro Rico defeated Stephan Timu and Anthony Gomez 8-6, while Richard Johnson and Omar Altmann beat Eugenio Romero and Christian Groh 8-3.

Doerner and Begemann rebounded from the doubles loss as they logged wins at court one and four. No. 6 Doerner defeated Stronk 6-1, 6-1, while Begemann handed Timu a 6-2, 6-4 defeat. Lovrak remained undefeated in singles as he defeated Dickhardt in three sets, 3-6, 6-1, 6-2 and at No. 6, Altmann beat Robert Sabo in the super tiebreaker.

Fresno State Recap: The men's tennis team concluded its home schedule with a 7-0 sweep over No. 44 Fresno State Sunday afternoon on Senior Day at the Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center in Malibu, Calif.

Before a crowd of several hundred fans, the Waves swept the three matches to pick up the doubles point and take a 1-0 lead. The No. 52 doubles team of seniors Pedro Rico and Ivor Lovrak defeated Rudy Siwy and Charlie Irie 8-4 at No. 2. The No. 1 nationally-ranked duo of senior Scott Doerner and sophomore Andre Begemann secured the point with an 8-3 victory over No. 49 Serg Modoc and Sam Gibbs.

At No. 5, Johnson kicked off singles with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Tadevosian. Begemann followed as he defeated Irie 6-2, 6-2 at court four to give Pepperdine a 3-0 lead. To clinch the match, No. 25 Rico put away Modoc 6-2, 6-1. At No. 1, Cech kept it close in the first set, forcing No. 6 Doerner to a tiebreaker, but the Wave recorded the win 7-6 (5) and followed with a 6-2 win in the second set. Jordi Ballester defeated Altmann in the first set 6-3, but the freshman rebounded with a 6-4 victory in the second set. Winning 10-7 in the super tiebreaker, the Wave gave Pepperdine the sweep.

About Texas: The Longhorns extended their win streak to 14 after defeating Colorado 5-2. Their only loss came at the hands of Duke on February 10. Sophomore Travis Helgeson leads Texas with a No. 7 national ranking in singles, while seniors Roger Gubser and Callum Beale follow with No. 36 and No. 39 national rankings, respectively. Helgeson and Michael Venus team up in doubles for a No. 38 ranking. Head Coach Michael Center is in the midst of his fifth season with the Longhorns.

Series Versus Texas: Pepperdine leads the all-time series 6-5 against Texas. Friday's match will be the first time the two teams have met since 2002 when the Waves edged the Longhorns 4-3 in Texas.

About Texas A&M: The Aggies enter the match with a record of 13-7. Saturday's match against the Waves will mark the team's final home match of the season. Sophomore Jerry Makowski leads Texas A&M in singles with a No. 8 ranking, while sophomore Matt Bain rounds out the Top 125 with a No. 117 ranking. Juniors Bryan Wooten and Brett Joelson pair up for a No. 58 ranking in doubles. Eight-time conference Coach-of-the-Year Tim Cass is in the midst of his 10th season at the helm of the Aggie men's tennis program.

Series Versus Texas A&M: Pepperding leads the all-time series 5-3 against the Aggies. In 2005, the Waves captured the 6-1 victory at home.

Looking Ahead: After concluding their regular season, the Waves compete at the WCC Championships from April 21-23 in Moraga, Calif.

No. 1 Doubles Team in the Nation: For three consecutive Fila Collegiate Tennis Rankings, Pepperdine topped the doubles list with the No. 1 duo of senior Scott Doerner and sophomore Andre Begemann. The pair is 23-2 overall and 11-1 against nationally ranked doubles teams. The Wave duo's two losses came at the hands of UCLA's Benjamin Kohlloeffel and Philipp Gruendler and San Diego State's No. 21 doubles team. The top ranking marks the first time a doubles team has earned the top spot in Adam Steinberg's 13 years as a head coach. Seniors Ivor Lovrak and Pedro Rico are also ranked at No. 52 and hold a current record of 15-4 at position two and 1-0 playing at the No. 1 position. The pair posted a win over Wake Forest's No. 46 team of Todd Paul and Andrew Hamar. The doubles team of Richard Johnson and Omar Altmann are 12-5 playing at the No. 3 position, including significant wins against UCLA, Florida State, Mississippi, Baylor and San Diego State.

Successful Singles: The Waves boast three nationally-ranked players in singles. Leading the Waves is Doerner, who remains in the Top 10 at No. 6, while Rico follows at No. 25. Lovrak moved up the rankings, checking in at No. 54. Doerner is 20-4 playing at No, 1, while Rico is 18-4 overall. Lovrak dominates at No. 3 with a 19-0 record, including four wins against nationally-ranked opponents. Junior Richard Johnson is 15-9 overall, going 6-1 at No. 3, while newcomers Andre Begemann and Omar Altmann are 18-5 and 20-3, respectively.

Waves Against Ranked Opponents: In both singles and doubles, the Waves are putting up impressive numbers when competing against nationally-ranked opponents. In singles, Pepperdine has a combined total of 19-11 versus nationally ranked opponents and a combined total of 11-2 in doubles. Rico is 6-2 posting a win over then-No. 10 Somdev Devvarmann of Virginia, which clinched the match for the Waves. During the ITA National Indoors, the senior also had wins over Mississippi's Eric Claesson (No. 22) and Duke's Jonathan Stokke (No. 20). Lovrak clinched the match for Pepperdine when he defeated UCLA's No. 75 Mathieu Dehaine in the tiebreaker. Doerner posted victories over No. 13 Luke Sheilds of Boise State, Wake Forest's No. 10 Todd Paul and most recently Baylor's No. 5 Lars Poerschke.

It's no surprise that Doerner and Begemann are ranked at No. 1 after defeating ten of the nation's top doubles teams. The pair kicked off the season with a win over then-No. 19 Rylan Rizza and Darrin Cohen of Virginia and during the ITA National Indoors, the team defeated a Top 10 doubles teams in Duke and the No. 40 team of Mississippi. The pair defeated Michigan's No. 9 team of Matko Maravic and Brian Hung, topped Baylor's No. 19 duo of Jon Reckewey and Matija Zgaga and most recently recorded two wins over Top 50 doubles teams in Washington (No. 19) and TCU (No. 33).

Head Coach Adam Steinberg: The 2005 season marks Adam Steinberg's third as the head of the Pepperdine men's tennis program. Following success in the Big East and the Southeastern Conference (SEC), Steinberg took the reigns of the West Coast Conference's (WCC) top men's tennis institution in June 2002.

Steinberg has coached the Waves to three consecutive WCC Championships and a 60-23 record in his first three years in Malibu. In addition to local dominance, the Waves have garnered national attention under Steinberg. In 2002 Steinberg produced two All-Americans in Diego Acuna and Calle Hansen, and in 2003 sophomore Pedro Rico tabbed the honor. In 2005, Rico and Scott Doerner earned the honors.

The native New Yorker and Penn State graduate has taken the Waves to three straight NCAA Championship appearances, including a trip to the quarterfinals in 2005.

"Pepperdine is highly regarded in the world of men's collegiate tennis. The University is well-respected for its unique combination of outstanding academics and its established tennis tradition," says Steinberg. Steinberg has held that tradition true over his first three years and continues to prove himself as one of the top coaches in the country.

Waves At Home: In the midst of the 2006 season, the Waves boast an 19-0 record when playing at the Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center on Pepperdine's campus. Beginning the season in victorious fashion, Pepperdine defeated then-No. 1 Virginia, 4-3, in its season opener. The Waves have also recorded big wins over No. 36 Michigan, No. 33 Wake Forest, No. 7 Baylor and most recently No. 28 Washington and No. 44 Fresno State. Pepperdine has not lost on its home court since 2004, when the Waves were defeated by USC.

Waves On The Road: On the road, Pepperdine is 3-0 on the road. The Waves defeated UCLA 4-3 on February 10, handing the Bruins their first loss of the season, snapping UCLA's 28-match home winning streak, which dates back to March 10, 2004. The Waves traveled to Texas where they defeated No. 32 TCU and No. 28 Cal. Playing on neutral territory in Seattle, Wash. at the ITA National Men's Team Indoor Championships, Pepperdine defeated Florida State in the first round, Mississippi in the quarterfinals and Duke in the semifinals to send the Waves to the final match for the first time since 1986. Pepperdine suffered its first loss of the season when No. 2 Georgia handed the Waves a 4-0 defeat.

Sports Information Hotline: For updated information concerning Pepperdine athletics, including results and a schedule of upcoming events, please contact the Pepperdine Sports Information Hotline at 310-506-7373. The hotline will be updated on a regular basis throughout the course of the 2005-06 school year.

On The Web: For updated information concerning Pepperdine athletics, including results and schedules of upcoming events, on the Internet, please bookmark the following web address: http://www.PepperdineSports.com

For More Information: For more information on the men's tennis program or to arrange interviews with coaches and players, please contact Jennifer Landes at the Pepperdine Sports Information office by calling (310) 506-4160.