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Monday, April 21, 2014 | Last updated: 12:52am

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Men's tennis opens spring home schedule



The Arizona men’s tennis team will open its home season against NAU on Friday and UC Riverside on Sunday.

Arizona will return to play after a 2-4 finish during last weekend when it defeated UC Irvine twice and lost twice each to Texas A&M Corpus Christi and No. 67 New Mexico.

UA has faced both NAU and UC Riverside before and will take advantage of knowing the teams.

“We played both teams last year and they compete very well,” head coach Tad Berkowitz said. “Division I men’s college tennis is very deep and we look for a couple of tough matches this weekend.”

NAU is a young team consisting five juniors and three freshmen. The Lumberjacks finished last season 4-19 and 1-9 in the Big Sky Conference.

UC Riverside’s fourth match of the season will be against Arizona. The team has not won a match so far this season after finishing last year with a 3-21 record and 0-6 in the Big West Conference.

After winning only two out of six matches last weekend, Arizona has focused and has prepared physically and mentally for this weekend.

“We’re focusing on taking advantage of opportunities,” assistant coach Arron Spencer said. “We played good tennis last weekend; we took opportunities but we let some slip.”

Arizona will play the first four home matches off-campus at the Tucson Country Club and next weekend at Reffkin Tennis Center, instead of the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center on campus.

The team and the coaches said they think this will draw more fans and get more people out there to support.

“It’s good to get out into the community and be more accessible to people,” Spencer said. “It’s fun to get out there and hopefully it will draw fans in when we play at Robson.”

While the men’s tennis team opens its home season, Arizona’s women’s tennis team will also resume the home season after being off since November as it hosts NAU on Saturday.

The men’s tennis match on Friday will begin at 12:30 p.m. and on Sunday at 11 a.m.

—Follow Rose Aly Valenzuela @RoseAlyVal


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