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Spartans Look To Keep Rolling

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Senior Leandro Osorio needs just one doubles win to become the third player in school history to reach 60 career doubles wins.

Senior Leandro Osorio needs just one doubles win to become the third player in school history to reach 60 career doubles wins.

Feb. 16, 2009

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. - With the Atlantic Sun Conference season just a little more than two weeks away, the USC Upstate tennis teams will face some tough competition this week, as the Upstate men's program will open their 2009 home slate by facing undefeated Appalachian State on Saturday. Both tennis team will then face the defending MEAC Champions, S.C. State, on the road on Sunday at 1 p.m.

What To Watch For This Week In USC Upstate Tennis
• Senior Anna Novo, already the school's all-time singles (78) and combined (141) wins leader, needs a win at doubles to tie Diana Martinez's school record of 64.
• Junior Arnaldo Lovera needs two singles wins to tie for sixth in school history with 48 in a career with Stefan Dumitrescu (2004-07).
• Senior Daniela Lovera is one of four players in school history to have 100 career combined wins (45 singles, 55 doubles) with the women's program.
• Freshman Cinthya Lazaro has moved into second on the women's team in wins with 10. She is a perfect 3-0 in dual meets.
• Freshman Ramiro Blanco has started his career as a Spartan a perfect 5-0 in singles play, having won three matches at the No. 6 slot and one each at No. 3 and No. 5.
• Senior Leandro Osorio needs one doubles win to become the third player in school history to reach 60 in a career.

One More Record
Senior Anna Novo enters the week looking to break the only school record she already doesn't own when she takes the court with doubles partner, sophomore Emilia Milovanovic. Already the school's record holder in number of singles wins (78) and combined wins (141), she needs just one win to tie Diana Martinez's school record of 64 doubles wins, set from 2005-08. Novo, a two-time Division II All-American and the reigning A-Sun Player of the Year, also holds the school record for number of Player of the Week selections (6) and number of fall tournament wins (3).

Os Oh Sweet
Senior Leandro Osorio enters the week looking to reach a significant mileston. With 59 doubles wins, the Chilean needs just one win to become the third player in school history to reach the 60-win plateau. He can join former Division II All-Americans Stefan Dumitrescu and Jose Luis Reyes in the club.

Lovera Gets First A-Sun Weekly Award
Junior Arnaldo Lovera won both his singles matches this weekend, helping the USC Upstate men's tennis team to two wins and helping him earn his first Atlantic Sun Conference Player of the Week award on Feb. 11. The A-Sun Player of the Week honors was the second straight for the Spartans' men's team, as junior Jack Roux earned his first career weekly honors on Feb. 4.

Lovera has now pulled even with his sister, Daniela Lovera, a senior on the women's team, in the number of weekly honors they have received from the A-Sun. Daniela won the women's tennis player of the week on April 4, 2008.

100's Grand
Senior Daniela Lovera became the fourth player in the women's program's history to reach 100 career combined wins with her 6-1, 6-2 win over Charleston Southern's Brooke Pletcher on Feb. 14. With 45 singles wins and 55 doubles wins, she joins former teammates Diana Martinez, Susana Hernandez and senior Anna Novo in the club. Martinez was the first to reach the mark in 2007, while Hernandez and Novo reached it in 2008.

Grouped Together
After three years on the courts together, it's hard not to group together the Upstate men's tennis teams four juniors together, especially since all four have had the same brilliant success. Javier Tori, with 92 career combined wins, is already tied for sixth in school history and Renzo Airaldi, with 85 wins, is 10th. Jack Roux, with 76 wins is 14th and Arnaldo Lovera, although he only has nine career doubles wins, is just two singles win shy of reaching sixth in the school's history, having racked up 46 singles wins. Both Tori, who has 44 career singles wins, and Roux, who has 42 wins are right behind Lovera.

Marking De Marzo
Now in his fifth season as head coach of the Spartan tennis programs, head coach Alessandro De Marzo has established himself as one of the brightest young coaches in collegiate tennis. With 71 victories with the men's team, he is firmly in second place in the program's history behind Alan Ferguson (1988-97), who won 119 matches in his decade at the helm of the men's team. Already the winningest coach in the history of the women's program with 66 career wins, he is just 20 wins behind Ferguson's school record mark of 157 career combined wins (119 men's wins, 40 women's wins while coaching the team from 1991-97).

Up Next
The USC Upstate men's tennis team will get back on the courts on Thursday, Feb. 26 with a home match against Wofford at 3 p.m. before travelling to Georgia Southern for a 2 p.m. match on Sunday, March 1. The women's team will head to UNC Wilmington for a 3 p.m. match on Friday, Feb. 27 before also taking on Georgia Soutern on March 1.

 
USC Upstate Men's Tennis
 
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