AUSTIN, Texas -- The University of Texas men's tennis squad will not take to the courts for dual-match play until Jan. 28, 2006 when the Longhorns visit Minnesota, but one Longhorn already was in midseason form against a familiar opponent over the weekend at a tennis exhibition.
As a prelude to an Andy Roddick exhibition tennis match on Saturday, Dec. 17 in Frisco, Texas, UT senior Roger Gubser (Laredo, Texas), the nation's 41st-ranked player, took on Texas A&M's fifth-ranked Jerry Makowski in a 10-point exhibition match. Gubser's solid fall play continued into his match against Makowski, as Gubser scored the victory.
Gubser tallied an 8-3 singles record during the fall season, including a three-set victory over Virginia's 12th-ranked Somdev Devvarman at the ITA All-American Championships in October.
Longhorn quartet earns ITA Regional rankings
Four Longhorns have garnered Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) regional singles rankings after completing productive fall seasons.
The aforementioned Gubser earned a No. 5 ranking in the South Central region while sophomore All-American Travis Helgeson (Overland Park, Kan.) came in at No. 8. Sophomore Milan Mihailovic (Nis, Serbia) entered the rankings at No. 11, and freshman Michael Venus (Orlando, Fla.) made his regional-rankings debut at No. 19.
Helgeson and Venus collected a No. 2 regional doubles ranking, and Gubser, along with junior Hubert Chodkiewicz (Corpus Christi, Texas), earned a No. 7 ranking. Mihailovic teamed with sophomore Luis Diaz Barriga (Cordoba, Mexico) for a No. 15 regional doubles ranking.
Texas awaits Spring campaign after solid Fall season
Seven Longhorns participated in fall tournament play and posted a collective 49-23 singles record in six tournaments. UT head coach Michael Center liked what he saw from his youthful corps of Longhorns and expects the team's play to improve as the season progresses.
"We had a terrific fall season that allowed us to get our young guys some more matches under their belts," said Center, now in his sixth season at Texas. "(Assistant) Coach (Ricardo) Rubio and I saw a group of men willing to work hard everyday to become better players and better students, and you can't ask for much more than that. We can't wait to get started again."
Texas resumes play on Jan. 14 at the Miami Quad tournament before beginning the dual-match season on Jan. 28 at Minnesota.