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Jan. 10, 2006

CHARLOTTESVILLE – The Virginia men’s tennis team is the preseason No. 1 team in the nation as the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) announced its preseason top 75 on Tuesday. The ranking marks the highest spot the Cavaliers have ever had in the rankings, breaking the previous high of No. 2 set last season.

The No. 1 ranking makes the men’s tennis program the 10th Cavalier squad to earn a national No. 1 ranking: Football, Field Hockey, Men’s Soccer, Women’s Soccer, Women’s Cross Country, Men’s Basketball, Women’s Basketball, Men’s Lacrosse, and Women’s Lacrosse.

The Cavaliers received 16 first-place votes in the poll, and was followed in the top ten by Florida, Georgia, Illinois, UCLA, Ole Miss, Baylor, Duke, Pepperdine, and LSU.

“I think the ranking is a reflection of the hard work we have put into this program, the excellent season we had last year, and the respect that our current group of players have earned,” said Virginia Associate Head Coach Tony Bresky. “There is a lot of work to be done this year, and we want to finish the season ranked No. 1, not just start it that way. We are excited for the ranking, but we are also excited for the opportunities this team has to accomplish a lot in the upcoming season.”

In addition to the preseason team ranking, four Cavaliers received preseason national singles rankings and four doubles teams received national rankings.

In the singles rankings, the Cavaliers had a pair of players ranked in the top ten, the only school in the nation to accomplish that feat. Second year Treat Huey (Alexandria, Va.) led the Cavaliers with a No. 6 singles ranking, while fellow second-year Somdev Devvarman (Chennai, India) is ranked No. 10. Third-year Marko Miklo (Bratislava, Slovakia) is ranked No. 46 in the preseason rankings, while fourth-year Rylan Rizza (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.) is ranked No. 53.

In the doubles rankings, the team of Rizza and Darrin Cohen (Lafayette, Calif.) is ranked No. 19, leading the Cavaliers. The team of Cohen and Doug Stewart (Malibu, Calif.) is ranked No. 25, Devvarman and Huey are ranked No. 35, and Jarrett Chirico (Sarasota, Fla.) and Eric Riley (Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.) are ranked No. 43 in the preseason rankings.

The Cavaliers will be in action this weekend in their final individual tournament of the season, the National Collegiate Tennis Classic, dubbed the “Wimbledon of College Tennis”, at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Palm Springs, Calif. Virginia will open the dual match season on January 17 as they visit No. 9 Pepperdine.

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