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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Wildcat Weekend Sports Preview

    Arizona mens tennis senior Roger Matalonga returns a shot during the Wildcats match against UC-Santa Barbara on Feb. 3. Matalonga and the mens tennis team roll into action tomorrow against Fresno State at home.
    Arizona men’s tennis senior Roger Matalonga returns a shot during the Wildcats’ match against UC-Santa Barbara on Feb. 3. Matalonga and the men’s tennis team roll into action tomorrow against Fresno State at home.

    Week off prepares men’s tennis for tough matches

    Having last week off couldn’t have come at a better time for the No. 58 Arizona men’s tennis team after starting the season 4-0.

    This proved to be beneficial because of minor injuries some of the players had suffered, said Arizona head coach Tad Berkowitz, before the Wildcats host No. 67 Fresno State (5-1) at 1 p.m. tomorrow and No. 45 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (2-3) at noon Sunday at Robson Tennis Center.

    Before the time off, the Wildcats competed on two previous weekends. The players didn’t take the break to relax though, as the team continued practicing hard throughout the week, Berkowitz said.

    “”The break helped us get healthy after working so hard,”” he said.

    Everyone is back to 100 percent healthy except for senior Daniel Andrus, Berkowitz said. Andrus suffered a pulled groin muscle in the first match Jan. 27 against Montana State in the second point of the match.

    Andrus may play this weekend, depending on how he is feeling.

    “”It’s a game-time situation,”” Berkowitz said. “”He’s been practicing hard in practice all week.””

    – Katie Miller

    Women’s tennis team hits road with improved ranking

    After starting the season ranked No. 58, the Arizona women’s tennis team finds itself only getting better with the season under way.

    Having started the year 7-0, the team has moved up to No. 46 in the polls, adding to the pressure Arizona faces this weekend when it plays at No. 44 Fresno State today at 1:30 p.m. before continuing the trip at No. 63 Oklahoma (2-1) tomorrow at noon.

    “”Not to be cocky, but we feel we deserve to be there, if not better,”” freshman captain Danielle Steinberg said about the team’s ranking.

    Playing away also means that the team will have to adjust to playing at sea level compared to playing above sea level at home, Arizona head coach Vicky Maes said.

    “”It will be a big adjustment on the road,”” she said. “”The course will be a little slower, and we will have to make a quick transition.””

    – Katie Miller

    Track and Field Teams ready to compete in Flagstaff

    This weekend the No. 7 men’s and unranked women’s track and field teams will compete in the South West Classic in Flagstaff to prepare for a bigger event that takes place next weekend.

    The meet will be a great way to improve performances before the Mountain Pacific Championships next weekend, said Arizona head track and field coach Fred Harvey.

    “”It’s going to be more of a tune up for our athletes,”” Harvey said.

    Among the 37 Wildcats scheduled to compete are senior sprinters Jennifer Whitlock and Marquita Taylor.

    Harvey said he expects Whitlock and the rest of the short sprinters to perform well.

    “”We would like (Whitlock) to get another consistent mark underneath her belt,”” Harvey said.

    Whitlock said she hopes this meet will help her get ready for next weekend.

    “”The girls I am competing against next weekend have run consistent times,”” Whitlock said.

    – Cassie Blombaum

    Banged-up Ruggers hope backups can stop SoCal rivals

    The Arizona club rugby team had a much-needed week off after two rough home conference losses.

    The Ruggers (3-4, 0-3 SoCal Conference) hope the idle time has healed their wounds as they face off against Long Beach State (9-1, 2-0) today at 3 p.m. and UCLA (1-2, 1-1) Sunday at 12:15 p.m. in a weekend home stand at Estevan Park.

    Arizona has not won a regular-season game or conference match in all of 2006. The team currently sports a four-game losing skid that dates all the way back to mid-November.

    The Wildcats’ losing streak is due, in large part, to the team’s inability to stay healthy, and the injury report continues to grow.

    The latest victims include senior halfback Doug Hood (shoulder) and junior flanker Kevin Hills (ankle). Hood strained his shoulder two weeks ago in matches against University of California-Santa Barbara and Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo.

    Hills hurt his ankle while playing a game of pickup basketball last weekend, according to a press release. The two will be joined on the disabled sideline by senior captain Mark Gallo, senior lock Dan Glad, junior flanker Matt Wagoner and sophomore flanker Matt Seward.

    “”This has been a remarkable year for injuries,”” Ruggers head coach Dave Sitton said. “”It started in Texas opening weekend, and we seem to be hurting someone every week. We’re fit, but we’re not fortunate.””

    – Mike Ritter

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