No. 22 Wake Forest to Host No. 5 Oklahoma
Feb. 28, 2013
By Alex Botoman, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeTennis)
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Making its season debut in the ITA top 25 this week, the Wake Forest men's tennis team faces an immediate test, hosting No. 5 Oklahoma on Friday at 4 p.m. at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex.
The Demon Deacons (9-2) will then wrap up play for the week on Sunday when they host William & Mary (11 a.m.) and Longwood (6 p.m.) in a doubleheader.
Last Time Out...
In its most recent matches, Wake Forest dropped a 4-3 heartbreaker to now-No. 8 Tennessee before coming back later that evening to down Elon 6-1.
Deacs Are the Nation's Most Improved Team
By ranking, the Demon Deacons are the most improved team in the country from last season, moving up 47 spots from their 2012 season-end ranking of No. 69. They join No. 18 Clemson (46 spots) and No. 24 Cornell (46 spots) as the only teams in the country to have improved moved up more than 40 spots in the rankings from last season.
Amogh Prabhakar continued his meteoric rise through the singles rankings, coming in at No. 37 this week. The senior captain holds a 21-6 singles record, including a 9-1 mark in dual matches while playing primarily at the No. 2 position. Six of his 21 victories have come against players who are currently ranked nationally.
Fellow senior David Hopkins remained in the singles rankings at No. 123. Hopkins has gone 5-5 at No. 1 singles for the Demon Deacons.
Hopkins and Prabhakar are ranked No. 55 nationally in doubles, holding a 19-7 record, including 8-3 at No. 1 doubles this spring.
Wake Forest Goes Through Navy SEAL Training
An instructor led the team through an intense week of conditioning sessions that were modeled after the training that Navy SEALs undergo, which are designed to improve physical and mental strength as well as team cohesion. You can see a photo gallery of the workouts here
David Hopkins has won 85 doubles matches in his career, ranking him sixth in Wake Forest history. Hopkins recently moved past Demon Deacon legend Todd Paul, who won 84 matches in his time at Wake Forest. The senior is three wins away from tying Raul Munoz (1998-01) and Ross (2002-06) who each won 88 doubles matches for the Deacons.
Scouting the Opposition
No. 39 Costin Paval has held down the top of the lineup for the Sooners, going 7-0, including 6-0 at the No. 1 position. No. 69 Guillermo Alcorta is also ranked for Oklahoma, as are two doubles teams: No. 42 Axel Alvarez Llamas/Alcorta and Paval/Dane Webb. The Sooners are coached by John Roddick, the brother of former world No. 1, Andy Roddick.
William and Mary sits at 5-5, defeating George Mason 5-2 in its CAA opener in its most recent match. Longwood is 3-3, beating Morgan State in its most recent outing.