April 24, 2001
The San Diego State University men's tennis teams earned the regular season Mountain West Conference men's tennis title after posting a perfect 5-0 record in conference play.
The 59th-ranked Aztecs were undefeated against Mountain West Conference opponents, giving them the outright title. This marks the first year a regular-season champion was named in men's tennis after the league adopted a regular-season conference schedule. The Aztecs are seeded first going into the Mountain West Conference Men's Championship in Salt Lake City, Utah, April 26-28. The Aztecs compiled a 14-9 overall record this season.
The Aztecs head to Salt Lake City for the MWC Championships as the No. 1 seed, April 26-68. The winner of the tournament receives an automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals. SDSU will play the winner of the match between the four seed Brigham Young and five seed Utah, Friday, April 27 at 9:00 a.m. at the Snowbird Canyon Racquet Club.
King of the MWC Players Of The Week
San Diego State sophomore Oliver Maiberger was named the Mountain West Conference Men's Tennis Player of the Week, April 18. This is the third week in a row Maiberger has received the honor, the fifth time this season, and the seventh time in his career. Sophomore Valentino Pest has also received the player of the week honor on two occasions, giving the Aztecs the award seven of 12 weeks.
Maiberger In The Rankings
Maiberger is currently ranked 22nd in the ITA poll. Maiberger recorded his 20th dual match win and 18th-straight victory over Mattias Tangefjord of USD, 6-3, 7-6, April 18. Maiberger is 20-1 in dual matches this season and 18-0 at the No. 1 singles position. His victories include wins over two of the nation's top players. He defeated defending national champion Alex Kim of Stanford, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1, Feb. 10. The win snapped a 17-match winning streak for Kim, who won the ITA National Indoor Championships, Feb, 1-4. Maiberger also recorded a win over No. 11 Alexander Hartman of Mississippi, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3, at the ITA National Team Championships on Feb. 17.
As a freshman, Maiberger was undefeated in regular season play (20-0) and was 21-1 overall.
Pest Returns For Postseason
Sophomore Valentino Pest of Munich, Germany, recently returned from a shoulder injury that put him on the sidelines for six weeks. The Addition of Pest at the No. 2 singles position has given the Aztecs more depth and the team has posted a 5-0 record since his return.
Prior to the injury, Pest advanced to the quarterfinals of the Rolex National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships, Feb. 1-4, the best any Aztec has performed in this tournament.
Pest topped Texas A&M's Shuon Madden, 6-3, 6-0, in the first round. Madden, a senior All-American, has been ranked as high as No. 2 in the country during his career. Pest defeated 79th-ranked Stefan Hirn of Indiana State, 6-3, 6-3, in the second round to advance to the quarterfinals. He then lost to No. 11 Ramsey Smith of Duke, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1.
Hasson On A Roll
SDSU junior Travis Hasson recently posted his sevent straight win and has not yet lost a match at the No. 5 singles position (5-0). Hasson is 16-8 in dual matches and 21-11 overall. In doubles, Hasson is on a nine-match winning streak at the No. 2 position, playing with Pest and senior Matt Bere.
Sweeping The Doubles
The Aztecs have won the doubles point the last nine matches and have won 17-of-21 pro sets. Maiberger and senior Adam Webster have recently teamed up as the No. 1 doubles team and have won 11 of 13 matches. Their wins include a victory over the 23rd-ranked doubles team of Carlos Lozano and Gert Vilms from BYU, 8-4. Junior Travis Hasson and Matt Bere have posted an 8-2 record at the No. 2 position and have posted two wins. Sophomore Michael Coehlo and freshman Khalid Naffa are 6-4 at the No. 3 position.
The Aztecs are led by head coach John Nelson (eighth year). Nelson has compiled a 95-87 mark at SDSU and an overall coaching record of 274-150. Nelson cme to SDSU at the end of the 1993 season and has done nothing but bring dramatic improvement to the Aztecs. Each year Nelson has brought the team closer to becoming a national force including a first-time appearance in the NCAA's 2000 Sweet 16. Nelson is assisted by Gene Carswell who is in his third year with the program.