Feb. 6, 2013
By Stephanie Juncker
By Stephanie Juncker
FRESNO, Calif. --- After two consecutive weekends on the road, the Bulldog men's tennis team returns to home action on Friday, Feb. 8 when Mountain West foe No. 64 San Diego State arrives to face off at 3 p.m. The matchup will be the first ever Mountain West hosted match at the Wathen Tennis Center and the first MW matchup of the year for the 'Dogs.
The Bulldogs will also host competition from the SEC as Fresno State will play No. 21 Auburn on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 12 p.m. at home (NOTE TIME CHANGE from original schedule). Auburn will play a neutral site match against San Diego State on Saturday, Feb. 9 beginning at 1 p.m.
Tough Two Weeks
Prior to this weekend's home stand, Fresno State played arguably the toughest two weekends of tennis in the entire country as the Bulldogs played two of the top three teams in the entire nation back-to-back, both on the road.
The 'Dogs first took on No. 2 USC in the championship match of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend, then traveled back to L.A. the following weekend to face No. 3 UCLA.
Both the Trojans and Bruins got the best of the Bulldogs, but the 'Dogs hope the experience of playing the national powerhouses pays off as they enter Mountain West play.
Sunday's matchup against Auburn will be the second time the 'Dogs have seen the Tigers in the 2012-13 season. The two teams met at the Napa Valley Collegiate Invitational in the Fall (Sept. 28-30) in the unusual set up of four matches in either singles or doubles. The Tigers had their way in fall, but with two new additions to the Fresno State roster since then, the 'Dogs will be looking to defend their home courts.
New Top 'Dog
Evan Austin is in his first season as the head coach of the Fresno State men's tennis team and becomes the seventh head coach in the history of the program and replaces Jay Udwadia, who guided the Bulldogs for the past eight seasons.
Austin was the head coach at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, for the last two seasons where he posted a 45-6 (.882) overall record, won two MVC championships and coached two different conference Players of the Year, as well as winning two MVC Coach of the Year awards.
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