BOISE, Idaho - The Boise State men's tennis team hit the road this week with its eyes on a critical road trip that will conclude the 2010 regular season. The No. 48 ranked Broncos (16-9, 5-1) face a three dual stretch away from home that could have big implications on both the Western Athletic Conference Championships, as well as qualifying for the NCAA tournament.
Boise State opens its season finale at the University of New Mexico on Thursday (April 15) at 1 p.m. The Broncos then head to Las Cruces, N.M. to square off against No. 42 Hawai'i at 10 a.m. on Saturday (April 17). The men will conclude their weekend in Tucson, Ariz. with a dual against No. 28 ranked Arizona, Sunday (April 18), at 12 p.m.
The Broncos first critical test should come on Saturday when the men will look to keep pace near the top of the WAC standings. Entering the final week of conference play, Boise State is 4-1 in WAC, while Hawai'i is 2-0 and Fresno State is 3-1. That means Saturday's dual could have big seeding implications for the conference tournament.
Boise State will also look to score a huge road upset at Arizona on Sunday, which could provide a huge boost for the Broncos in the final ITA rankings of the season.
Last time out...
Boise State improved its overall record to 16-9 (4-1 WAC) this past weekend with a pair of wins over New Mexico State and Nevada at the Appleton Tennis Center in Boise. The Broncos beat both the Aggies and Wolf Pack, 6-1, to send out seniors Vicente Joli and Harry Skinner on top. Joli went 1-0 in singles and 2-0 in doubles on the day, while Skinner won both of his singles matches as well.
With the two wins Boise State finished the season with a 12-1 record at home. Their only home loss of the spring came two weeks ago in a 4-3 heartbreaker against UC Santa Barbara.
With their two wins last Saturday the Broncos moved up one spot in this week's ITA National Team Rankings to No. 48. They continue to be led by sophomore James Meredith, who is ranked No. 42 in singles.
Looking at the opponents...
Boise State will face a trio of tough road duals this weekend, which begins with a match at the University of New Mexico on Thursday. The Lobos have struggled to a 6-10 overall record this season, but have proven to be tough to beat at home. UNM enters this week with a solid 5-2 record in Albuquerque, N.M., but are just 0-1 against nationally ranked opponents.
On Saturday the Broncos will face their last WAC opponent of the regular season as they meet No. 42 Hawai'i. The Warriors are 8-6 overall this season with a 2-0 record in conference play. Hawai'i is the only WAC team still undefeated in conference. The Warriors beat Nevada, 5-2, and No. 30 Fresno State, 5-2. Hawai'i is led by Dennis Lajola, who is ranked No. 111 in singles, and Phillipp Eberhard and Andreas Weber, who are No. 73 in doubles.
Boise State will conclude its regular season schedule on Sunday with a dual at No. 28 Arizona. The Wildcats have played to a 13-9 overall record this season and enter the weekend with a great deal of momentum after a 4-3 upset against No. 10 UCLA last week. Arizona is led by No. 119 ranked Andres Arango in singles, and the No. 90 ranked doubles team of Pat Metham and Borja Malo.