April 2, 2013
-- No. 42 San Diego (11-7, 2-1) vs. No. 43 San Diego State (13-6)
Wednesday, April 3, 2013, 4:00 p.m.
Aztec Tennis Center
-- No. 42 San Diego (11-7, 2-1) vs. San Francisco (8-5-1, 1-2)
Friday, April 5, 2013, 1:30 p.m
Hogan Tennis Center
-- No. 42 San Diego (11-7, 2-1) vs. No. 56 Santa Clara (13-7, 1-3)
Sunday, April 7, 2013, 2:00 p.m.
Hogan Tennis Center
LAST TIME OUT: The Toreros embarked on their first long road trip since the season's opening weekend when they headed to Big 12 country for matches against No. 36 TCU and No. 11 Oklahoma. USD lost both matches but gained crucial experience that will help down the road in WCC play.
Last Tuesday, the Toreros fell to TCU 4-3. After USD barely lost out on the doubles point, the Horned Frogs took the first three singles matches to clinch the victory. The Toreros could have packed it in then and began to think about their next match at Oklahoma, but the team showed great poise and rallied to win the last three singles matches, all in third set tiebreakers, to bring the final score to 4-3. Uros Petronijevic, Victor Pugliese, and Thibaut Visy earned singles victories in this one.
The Toreros ran into a very tough No. 11 Oklahoma team on Thursday. USD lost 7-0, but Clarke Spinosa and Thibaut Visy managed to win their doubles match over the 29th ranked duo of Costin Paval and Dane Webb at the No. 1. Spinosa and Visy are now 9-3 on the year when paired together.
SCOUTING THE AZTECS:
The Toreros will visit their cross-town rivals, the San Diego Aztecs, Wednesday afternoon at 4:00 p.m... The Aztecs are 13-6 and are ranked just one spot below the Toreros at No. 43... SDSU is 5-6 against ranked teams... Pepperdine is the only WCC team they have faced. The Waves, who are No. 10 in the nation, beat the Aztecs 4-0 on February 28... The Aztecs have faced five common opponents as the Toreros: UC San Diego (W, 7-0), USC (L, 4-0), Boise State (W, 5-2), Oklahoma State (W, 4-1,) and Memphis (L, 4-1). Both teams went 3-2 against that set of teams... Derek Siddiqui is the Aztecs lone ranked player at No. 97 in singles... Thorsten Bertsch is 13-2 at the No. 2, which could set up quite the showdown if No. 78 Clarke Spinosa
continues to play at the No. 2 for Coach Masi... Hunter Nicholas is 11-6 at the No. 3.... Andranik Khachatryan and Derek Siddiqui are 9-5 in doubles at the No. 2, but have lost their last three matches... The Aztecs are coached by Gene Carswell, who led the team to three consecutive Mountain West titles from 2005-07... The Aztecs hold a 24-19 edge in the all-time series. The teams have split the last two meeting, with USD winning 6-1 at home last season.
SCOUTING THE DONS: USF comes to San Diego with an 8-5-1 overall record and a 1-2 conference record. Their lone WCC win came last week against LMU at home, where they won 5-2... Their two WCC losses came to the conference's only remaining unbeaten teams, BYU and Pepperdine... USF Head Coach Peter Bartlett is in his 12th year with the Dons, and led the school to its first ever national ranking in 2007... The Toreros have never lost to USF, holding a 10-0 all-time record.
SCOUTING THE BRONCOS: Santa Clara moved up 11 spots in the latest ITA poll to No. 56. The Broncos are 13-7 and 1-3 in the WCC... The Broncos three conference losses came to the top three teams in the conference (BYU, Saint Mary's, and Pepperdine). Their lone win came against LMU... John Lamble, who is No. 63 in the ITA singles rankings, is the lone ranked player for the Broncos... Santa Clara Head Coach Derek Mills, who is in his sixth season, is the reigning WCC Coach of the Year after leading the Broncos to their first NCAA Tournament appearance in school history... The Toreros hold a 16-5 advantage in the all-time series.
IN THE MIX: After going 0-2 on their recent road trip, the Toreros dropped to No. 42 in the ITA team rankings... The Toreros have been in the rankings all season, getting as high as No. 26 and falling as low as No. 51... Junior Clarke Spinosa remains in the singles rankings at No. 78.
FOLLOW THE LEADER: Captains Thibaut Visy and Clarke Spinosa have been on a tear in doubles play. The duo has only lost once in their past eight matches, and recently knocked off Oklahoma's 29th ranked duo of Costin Paval and Dane Cook. Visy and Spinosa are now 9-3 on the season.
VICTOR...Y!: Sophomore Victor Pugliese holds the teams highest singles winning percentage. Pugliese, a native of Boulogne-Billancourt, France, is 12-5 in singles play and has won in eight of his last ten matches.
GOING AGAINST THE BEST: San Diego State will be the 12th ranked opponent the Toreros have faced this season, which has helped prepare the team for the stretch run against WCC competition. USD is 4-7 so far against ranked opponents.
GET THE INSIDE SCOOP: Want the latest insider information of the Torero tennis team? Head Coach Brett Masi reveals inside stories and jokes from the practice court, road trips, and even ice baths in his weekly newsletter, which can be seen here.
WCC WATCH: The Toreros are one of four WCC teams currently ranked by the ITA. The preseason conference favorite Pepperdine sits at No. 11 with a 16-4, 3-0 record. Brigham Young (15-4, 4-0) sits just one spot above the Toreros at No. 40. USD (11-7, 2-1) will look to keep pace with the Cougars and Waves this week when they host USF and Santa Clara (13-7, 1-3), who rose eleven spots to No. 56. Saint Mary's (8-9, 3-1) remains outside of the rankings.
PRESEASON PRAISE: USD was picked to finished second in the WCC preseason poll, receiving 57 points and one first place vote. The Toreros came in behind Pepperdine who took home eight first-place votes and 64 overall points. Santa Clara was voted third with 47 points, followed by BYU (45), San Francisco (30), Saint Mary's (29), and Loyola Marymount (23). Rounding out the poll was Portland (19) in eighth place and Gonzaga (10) in ninth.
MEET HEAD COACH Brett Masi: Masi enter his fourth year at USD with a 49-25 record. Masi guided the Toreros to their second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance in 2011-12 as USD posted an 18-9 record on the year and advanced to the second round of the NCAAs. The season was highlighted by a 4-1 victory over No. 11 Texas on the road that marked the third-highest ranked team USD has ever defeated. Masi's squad climbed as high as No. 16 in the ITA rankings before finishing the year at No. 26, the team's highest final ranking since the 1993 squad finished at No. 21.
In only his second year at USD in 2010-11, Masi led the Toreros to one of their finest seasons in decades as USD defeated Santa Clara 4-1 to claim the Toreros' first West Coast Conference title since 1990, as Masi took home WCC Coach of the Year honors, becoming the first USD coach to ever do so. In addition to being named ITA Southwest Region Coach of the Year, Masi guided USD to its first NCAA Championship appearance since the 2006 season, where the Toreros defeated No. 35 BYU 4-0 in the first round, before falling to eventual national champion USC in the second round. Under Masi, six Toreros earned All-WCC honors in 2011 and three players took home WCC Player of the Month honors, including conference player of the year Dean Jackson and conference freshman of the year Clarke Spinosa. Over the past two years, Masi has coached Jackson, who during the 2010-11 season tied the all-time USD career singles wins record with his 100th victory. Spinosa, one of Masi's first recruits at USD, tied the record for most singles wins by a freshman in Torero history (28) and set a new dual singles record by a freshman (21-3).
Also in 2011, Masi coached the Toreros to their highest Campbell/ITA ranking since 1990, reaching No. 20 and spending four-straight weeks in the Top-25 after opening the season with a No. 58 ranking. The Toreros put together their best team winning percentage (.731) since 1993 and closed out a perfect 10-0 dual match record at home. Masi guided the team to 12-consecutive dual match victories during the season, coming within two of the all-time USD record, while also leading the Toreros to six shutouts on the year, two shy of the USD record. Overall on the year, six of USD's seven losses came against teams ranked in the Campbell/ITA Top-10.
In his first season at the helm, Masi secured a record of 12-9, a final ITA ranking of No. 62, and a third place finish at the WCC Championships in April. The Toreros captured strong wins over UC Santa Barbara (6-1), UNLV (4-2), Cal Poly (5-2), and at the time, 51st-ranked UC Irvine (4-3). San Diego was led by All-WCC First Team selections, junior Dean Jackson and sophomore Nikola Bubnic, who each garnered 10+ singles victories in the dual campaign. Jackson finished the season with a record of 14-2, all at the No. 1 position, while taking home WCC Player of the Month honors for the month of February. Bubnic had more wins than any other Torero in 2010, capturing 30 singles victories for the combined fall and spring campaigns, a feat that has not been achieved since Jose Luis Noriega earned a mark of 31-4 in 1991.
Masi was named USD's new head men's tennis coach on May 21st, 2009. Masi came to USD from the University of Southern California where he had been with the USC men's tennis program since 2005, and had been Peter Smith's top assistant. The USC men's tennis program won the 2009 NCAA Men's Tennis Championship with a 4-1 win over #3 seed Ohio State. Masi took over for the late Tom Hagedorn who lost his courageous 18-month battle with Leukemia in late March 2009.
Prior to taking over at USD, Masi earned back-to-back honors as the ITA West Region Assistant Coach of the Year. He first won the award in 2007 following the Trojans' run to an 11-0 start and eventual 23-3 overall record with its trip to the NCAA Quarterfinals, and picked up his second accolade in 2008 after another USC run to the NCAA Quarterfinals.
The recently completed 2012 campaign marked his tenth season in collegiate tennis after spending his first two years as an assistant coach to the men and women's programs at Santa Clara University. Masi shared the responsibilities of individual workouts, strength and conditioning, recruiting and summer camp instruction for both the Bronco men's and women's teams in 2003 and 2004. In addition to his coaching duties, Masi also served as the Club Sports Coordinator and Bronco Kidz All-Sports Camp Director for the Pat Malley Fitness and Recreation Department in Santa Clara during this time.
Masi was a four-year letter winner at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where he remains one of the program's all-time winningest players. He completed his career with a 60-29 singles record; playing among the top three singles positions since his freshman campaign. He earned his highest career singles ranking at No. 38 in 2000 and was named to the All-Big West Conference first team as a senior. In 2001, he earned his bachelor's degree in recreation administration from Cal Poly and earned his master's degree from Azusa Pacific in 2002.
In addition to coaching, Masi runs tennis camps in the summer with former USD coach Ed Collins.
Masi prepped at Riverside Poly High School, where he was a four-time Ivy League champion in both singles and doubles. Masi was born Nov. 2, 1978 in Riverside, Calif. He and his wife, Desiree, have two young children - a son, Jaxson, and daughter, Devyn.