May 12, 2006
Malibu, Calif. - The 36th-ranked USD Toreros (15-6) will take on the 33rd-ranked Texas Christian Horned Frogs (17-9). San Diego, under 10th-year head coach Tom Hagedorn, are making their fourth straight appearance in the post-season. The first round NCAA match will take place on Saturday, May 13th, beginning at 12:00 noon. Host Pepperdine and Montana State will face off in the first match at 9 am. The winners of these two matches will play each other on Sunday, May 14th, beginning at 1 pm.
"We are excited to be here," said head coach Tom Hagedorn. "The first step was to get to this stage, we are a deserving team and we are just really excited. This was our goal all season long, and we have a group of guys who have been in this tournament every year, so I am really happy for them."
The 33rd-ranked Horned Frogs enter the Tournament with a 17-9 overall record after defeating San Diego State University in the MWC championship match. This season's tournament berth marks the 16th consecutive trip to the field of 64 for TCU.
"This Texas Christian team is really, really good. They beat us handily in our meeting earlier this season and have some big wins to their credit," said Hagedorn. "But this is a different match. I like our chances against these guys. In the tournament, much like basketball's March Madness, anything can happen. We have seniors playing in what could be their final match, we have freshman that are excited and motivated to play, and you just don't know how they are going to handle the atmosphere. We have some advantage in the fact that we are familiar with Pepperdine's courts, and that it is just a couple hour drive away. I think will be really competitive with TCU."
This year's Torero squad, led by a trio of seniors (Pierrick Ysern, Oscar Plotnik, Mirza Koristovic), was ranked as high as No. 23 in the nation this season and earned solid road wins over USC and Boise State. This marks the third straight year that the Toreros have not lost to a non-NCAA Tournament team; the 6th straight year they have been ranked in the top-50 in the nation; and the 10th straight winning season under the direction of Hagedorn.
USD finished 2nd at the recently played West Coast Conference Championships, and senior Pierrick Ysern (Paris, France) is the 2005 NCAA National Runner-up. Ysern, ranked 42nd, is also making his third straight trip to the NCAA Singles Championships, to be played at Stanford beginning on May 25th. He teams up with Thomas Liversage as the No. 24 ranked doubles team in the nation, and this Torero duo has advanced into the 32 team draw. This marks just the second time that the USD men's program has advanced a team, individual and doubles team into the tournament in the same year. The first time was in 1990 when the team advanced to the 2nd Round, and Jose Luis Noriega played in the singles, and teamed with J.R. Edwards in doubles.