May 18, 2005
Bruins and Vols to Battle in NCAA Round of 16 . . .
The seventh-seeded UCLA men's tennis team (23-3) heads to College Station, TX this week for the NCAA Round of 16 hosted by Texas A&M University. The Bruins open up against 10th-seeeded Tennessee (16-8) on Saturday at Noon (CST). The winner of that match will take on either 15th-seeded Washington or second-seeded Virginia in the quarterfinals on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. (CST). Live scoring for all matches during the championships can be accessed at the Texas A&M website: ncaatennis.tamu.edu
13. Oklahoma St.
14. Texas Tech
16. Texas A&M
UCLA Against the NCAA Field . . .
UCLA faced three of the 16 teams remaining during the 2005 regular season, posting a 2-1 record. The Bruins lost to No. 9 Virginia, 4-2 in the quarterfinals of the USTA/ITA National Team Indoors back in Feb. The following day, UCLA recorded a 4-1 victory over No. 2 Florida in a consolation match. The Bruins defeated No. 13 Washington, 5-0 in a Pac-10 match at the Los Angeles Tennis Center on Apr. 1.
Individual Championships Kick Off on May 25 . . .
UCLA will have several players competing in the NCAA Individual Championships (singles & doubles) after the team competition wraps up on May 24. Luben Pampoulov and Benjamin Kohlloeffel are both seeded in the singles draw, as Pampoulov checks in at No. 6 and Kohlloeffel is a 9-16 seed. Kris Kwinta is listed as the second alternate and will get in if two players are unable to compete. In doubles, Alberto Francis and Kwinta received an at-large selection out of the West Region.
Bruins Post Wins in NCAA Opening Round Play . . .
UCLA hosted a four-team NCAA Regional this past weekend at the Los Angeles Tennis Center, recording victories over Manhattan (4-0) in the first round and Pac-10 foe Cal (4-2) in the second. The Bruins have posted a 16-0 record in NCAA Regional competition since its inception in 1998.
A Year Ago at the Championships . . .
UCLA's run to the NCAA Final last season began as usual in regional competition at the Los Angeles Tennis Center. The Bruins advanced to the round of 16 following victories over Oral Roberts and Pepperdine in the first and second rounds respectively. Once in Tulsa, Okla., UCLA defeated Texas A&M and Clemson, setting up a semifinal showdown with top-seeded Illinois. The Bruins' 4-2 victory in that match snapped the Fighting Illini's 64-match winning streak and propelled UCLA to its first final since 1999. However, the Baylor Bears proved too much for UCLA the next day, defeating the Bruins, 4-0 in the title match.
Three Bruins Earn All-Pac-10 Honors . . .
UCLA's Benjamin Kohlloeffel, Luben Pampoulov and Kris Kwinta all earned Pac-10 Conference honors last week. Kohlloeffel was named Pac-10 Newcomer of the Year following an outstanding regular season in which he posted an impressive 36-7 overall singles record. He was also named first-team All-Pac-10 along with Pampoulov, who is the Bruins' highest ranked player at No. 7 nationally. Kwinta rounds out the group, earning honorable mention acclaim.
UCLA and Washington Share 2005 Pac-10 Title . . .
For the second time in as many years, UCLA has earned a share of the Pac-10 title, this time joining Washington as the only two teams to finish the season with 6-1 records. The Bruins' only loss was a 4-3 upset against Cal on April 8. The Huskies dropped a 5-0 decision to UCLA back on April 1 for their only defeat. The Bruins, who shared the title with USC last year, have won the Pac-10 in three out of the last four seasons (2002, 2004 and 2005).
Bruins End Regular Season at No. 6 . . .
UCLA checks in at No. 6 in the final team rankings of the regular season released on May 2. Individual rankings were also released and the Bruins feature five players ranked in singles play. Those players are: (#7) Luben Pampoulov, (#11) Benjamin Kohlloeffel, (#60) Kris Kwinta, (#85) Philipp Gruendler and (#109) Alberto Francis. In doubles, Francis and Kwinta are ranked 19th, followed by Kohlloeffel and Pampoulov at No. 43. Gruendler and Kohlloeffel check in at No. 58. New team and individual rankings will not be released again until the conclusion of the NCAA Championships.
Last Time in College Station . . .
UCLA was a No. 4 seed the last time Texas A&M hosted the NCAAs in 2002, advancing all the way to the semifinals. The Bruins opened up round of 16 play by defeating 13th-seeded Florida, 4-0. UCLA then downed 12th-seeded Auburn by the same score in the quarterfinals a day later. Top-seeded Georgia ended UCLA's run in the semifinals, posting a narrow 4-2 victory.
The Doubles Point . . .
UCLA has captured the doubles point in 22 of 26 matches this season. Only four teams have been able to get the point off of UCLA (Oklahoma State, Florida, Stanford and Arizona). Don't count the Bruins out if they lose the doubles point either, as, strangely enough, UCLA owns a 4-0 record when heading into singles play down 1-0.
Kohlloeffel Nearing 40-Win Mark . . .
Sophomore Benjamin Kohlloeffel, the 2005 Pac-10 Newcomer of the Year, is just two wins shy of reaching the 40-win mark in singles play, as he currently owns a 38-7 overall record. The only other player to reach 30 wins this season is senior Alberto Francis, who is 31-8 overall. At 26-7, senior Luben Pampoulov ranks third in singles wins. The last UCLA player to reach 40 wins in a season was Vince Allegre, who owned a 40-14 record in 1998.
Francis Returns to Texas . . .
Bruin senior Alberto Francis will be making a homecoming of sorts when the team competes in College Station this week, as he hails from McAllen, TX a city located near the southern tip of the state along the U.S.-Mexico border.
NCAA Tournament History . . .
Only UCLA and USC have appeared in every NCAA Tournament since the team format was adopted in 1977 (29 years). UCLA, however, is the only team to reach at least the round of 16 in all of those years. Since the Bruins' last NCAA title in 1984 (their 15th overall), UCLA has finished second five times, including last season. UCLA's last NCAA Singles Champion was head coach Billy Martin, who won the title in 1975. The last doubles team to go all the way was the duo of Justin Gimelstob and Srdjan Muskatirovic, who won it all in 1996.
Bruins Looking for No. 97 . . .
No other institution in the country has won more NCAA titles than UCLA, as the Bruins have won a combined 96 NCAA Championships (68 men, 28 women). The Bruins recently added No. 96 last week when the women's water polo team capped an undefeated season by defeating Stanford in the NCAA Final. The men's tennis team has won 15 NCAA titles, with its last coming in 1984.
Head Coach Billy Martin . . .
The 1996 ITA National Coach of the Year and UCLA's 1975 NCAA singles champion, Billy Martin, owns a 276-53 (.839) overall record and is currently in his 12th season as head coach at UCLA. In 11 season's, Martin has guided the Bruins to the national title match three times and has never had a team finish out of the top five at the NCAA Championships.
TEAM RANKINGS(May 2) 1. Baylor 2. Virginia 3. Florida 4. Mississippi 5. Illinois 6. UCLA 7. Georgia 8. Duke 9. Pepperdine 10. LSU 11. Kentucky 12. Washington 13. Oklahoma St. 14. Tennessee 15. Texas Tech 16. Texas A&M 17. Wake Forest 18. Florida State 19. So. Carolina 20. Tulane 21. USC 22. Stanford 23. Mississippi St. 24. Cal 25. Texas A&M Corpus Christi