March 23, 2003
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara University men's tennis team won its second-straight dual match and the third in its last five outings while handing the Air Force Academy only its second loss of the season with a 7-0 shutout of the Falcons Sunday at the Santa Clara University Tennis Center.
Santa Clara improved to 7-9 on the season and will return to action Thursday with a West Coast Conference match against nationally-ranked Pepperdine. Air Force, which is ranked 71st nationally, dropped to 14-2 on the season. Sunday's match was the first of a five-match road trip in California for the Falcons, who travel to Moraga Monday for a 3 p.m. competition against Saint Mary's College.
Sunday's match was delayed two hours due to inclement weather. However, once the sun came out and the two teams finally got on the court, the Broncos appeared less affected by the delay. Santa Clara jumped out to win the first point of the match by sweeping all three doubles matchups. Then, Broncos Taylor Bedilion and Michael Bruggemann opened singles with straight-set victories by identical 6-1, 6-2 scores to give Santa Clara a quick 3-0 lead.
Junior Erich Chen clinched the match at the number one singles position with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Air Force freshman Shannon Buck. Chen, a native of San Jose, Calif., started the match by losing four of the first five games before roaring back to lose just two en route to victory.
"Today was the most focused our team has been all season," said Bronco Head Coach George Husack. "The past week or so we have concentrated on getting back to the basics. We want to get back to doing what we do well and not worrying so much about our record. Every player on our team has really done a great job of bearing down, understanding what they have to do to be successful and going out and doing just that.
"With a national ranking of 71 and only one previous loss on its record, Air Force was really a quality opponent so it makes today's win that much more important to our team's confidence. We had a great alumni event yesterday that really brightened everyone spirits and we came out against a quality team and had a solid outing."
Santa Clara 7, Air Force Academy 0
March 23, 2003 * Santa Clara University Tennis Center
Weather: Windy, 60 degrees, sunny, 50% humidity
1. Erich Chen (SCU) def. Shannon Buck (AFA), 6-4, 6-2
2. Francisco Zepponi (SCU) def. Erik Pittman (AFA), 6-7, 6-4, 10-4
3. Taylor Bedilion (SCU) def. Tyler McClung (AFA), 6-1, 6-2
4. Federico Mattioli (SCU) def. Justin Mancinelli (AFA), 6-1, 2-6, 4-4 (ret.)
5. Ben Hidalgo (SCU) def. Martin Black (AFA), 6-2, 7-5
6. Michael Bruggemann (SCU) def. Tyler West (AFA), 6-1, 6-2
1. Bruggemann / Chen (SCU) def. Pittman / McClung (AFA), 8-6
2. Hidalgo / Zepponi (SCU) def. Mancelli / Buck (AFA), 8-6
3. Bedilion / Mattioli (SCU) def. Chris Dong / Black (AFA), 8-3
Santa Clara: 7-9
Air Force Academy: 14-2