No. 15 seed Alabama will play No. 2 seed Baylor on Saturday at noon in the "Sweet 16" in Athens, Ga. The match will take place at Henry Feild Stadium, the main courts at UGA.
In the nine times they've been to the dance, this year Bama may have the best chance. In '93 they reached the quarterfinals, but with only 20 teams in the running for the title; In '97 and '98 the Tide won two matches each, would winning on Saturday be a reach...?
won the east regional by beating Marist College and Harvard to advance to the "Sweet 16", the championship site. Bama scored two 4-0 shutout wins. There were 16 seeded teams in the 64-team field, one seeded team at each host site. All but two of the seeded teams advanced to the championship site. The entire tournament is a single elimination event...
First Year Coach, Third Straight NCAA Appearance - First year head coach Billy Pate continues a string of three consecutive years with the 2003 NCAA tournament berth. Alabama made the dance for the last two seasons under Adam Steinberg, who now leads the Pepperdine
men's program. This is the Tide's 10th appearance in the tournament. Alabama sports a 7-9 all-time record in NCAA post-season play...
The SEC, American Idols - Four Southeastern Conference teams advanced to the championship site. There are 9 league schools ranked in the top 25, and 11 SEC schools received an NCAA tournament bid. In the individual rankings, SEC players occupy 5 of the top 10 singles spots. (Nos. 1, 4, 6, 7, 9)...
An Encore Presentation
Alabama most recently played the Bears in 2001, losing 4-3 in Tuscaloosa. Current Tide junior Christian Brodersen lost to current Baylor
senior Zoltan Papp, at No. 5 singles. Alabama also met Baylor in the 2000 regular season with Baylor Scoring a 5-2 win. Tide senior Max Belski is the only current player who saw action in that match, as he beat
Papp 7-6, 6-4 at No. 3 singles.
Dates & Times
Bama plays Baylor at noon Saturday. All eight "round of 16" matches will be played Saturday. The Saturday winners will play Sunday, and so on for Monday and Tuesday. The 2003 National Champion must win four matches in four days. The Championship match will be televised by ESPN on May 27 at 1 p.m. CST. Only four teams have won the national championship in the past 20 year: Stanford
, Southern Cal and Georgia
, but of those four, only Stanford and UCLA remain in this year's championship...
Alabama has five seniors and three juniors on the travel roster for the NCAA tournament. Overall, they have represented the Crimson Tide in 962 individual singles and doubles matches during their career and have a 549-413 record...
Should Alabama beat Baylor the Tide would play the winner of Texas A&M
in the round of eight. Alabama has faced both teams this season, losing to Vandy 7-0 indoors on April 6 and losing 6-1 to Texas A&M in College Station on March 22...
Sunday and Beyond
Sunday's quarterfinal matches will be played at noon and 3 p.m. The semifinal matches are scheduled for noon and 4 p.m. on Monday, while the championship match is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Tuesday.
Pate to Coach All-Star Team this Summer
Billy Pate has been named to coach for the USTA Collegiate Team this summer. Pate will be coaching the top U.S. collegiate players in events for five weeks.
Individual Honors to Date
Five current Crimson Tide players were recognized at the SEC banquet preceding the SEC tourney. Senior Maxim Belski was named second-team All-SEC while four Tide players were named to the Academic All-SEC squad: Junior Chirstian Brodersen, Seniors William Boyles, Brian Isern and Tom Givan...
Team Awards Banquet
Four awards were given at the banquet Thursday, April 24: Chris Gostek (junior, Toronto) - MVP (voted by team); Bradley Friedman (senior, Mountain Brook) - 110% Award (voted by team); Michael Ray Pallares (senior, Leonia, N.J.) - most improved (coach selected); and Christian Brodersen (junior, Heinsberg, Germany) - Academic Award (highest GPA)...
The University of Georgia and the NCAA will both offer updated results via the Internet throughout the team and individual portions of the Championships. The Georgia site will feature live scoring for both the team and individual tournaments. Results will be updated on the Georgia site throughout the course of the matches in progress. Both sites will be linked from rolltide.com's men's tennis section.