Net Points: Men's Tennis Notebook - Aug. 4

Aug. 4, 2009


Last month, University of Kentucky tennis honored the Varga family, known around the Commonwealth as the "first family of tennis", by dedicating outdoor court seven at the Boone Tennis Complex as Don and Shirley Varga Court on the final day of the Fifth Third Bank Tennis Championships.

The court is named in honor of the patriarch and matriarch of the Varga family, tireless contributors to tennis in the state of Kentucky, the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Southern Region and the UK program.

As co-owners of the Louisville Tennis Club, they served as hosts and directors for the USTA National Indoor Tennis Championships for 14 years. Shirley was a driving force in Kentucky tennis as Executive Director for 11 years. Don served as President of the Kentucky Tennis Association and the Southern Tennis Association.

In addition, they were parents of four Wildcat tennis players - John, Paul, Andrew and Julie. Each of the boys served as captain for their final two years, marking an amazing six-year run (1982-87) with a Varga leading the team.

UK men's tennis head coach Dennis Emery and Associate Athletic Director Russ Pear were on hand for the dedication ceremony along with Don Varga and his children John, Paul, Andrew and Julie.

"It's really an honor and pleasure to dedicate the court on behalf of Don and Shirley Varga," said Emery. "They have been incredibly supportive of our program. They superbly directed the National Indoor Tennis Championships and raised three young men that made a major impact on our program.

"Paul, Andy and John each spent two years as captain. John led the team during my first season at UK. Paul remains the all-time leader in singles wins in school history with 158 victories. Andy was the first Wildcat to win an individual SEC Championship."

•    Musialek Earns Points in Spain on Summer Circuit

After earning his first Association of Tennis Players (ATP) point last month in his native France, returning men's tennis sophomore Alex Musialek took his game to Spain to earn a pair of tour points. In three of his four tournaments in the neighboring country, Musialek has battled through the qualifying rounds to advance to the main draw as a qualifier - winning eight out of nine matches in the process.

In the Spanish Mediterranean coastal city of Denia last month, Musialek nabbed a pair of points with a quarterfinal run at the Spain Futures 25. Playing on clay, he defeated three opponents to move on to the main draw. Once there, Musialek dispatched Spaniard Carlos Garcia-Villanueva in the first round. In round two, he routed Italian Matteo Volante, ranked No. 619 in the world 6-2, 6-1. Musialek's drive was halted by eventual champion Pedro Sousa of Portugal, ranked No. 850 in the world, in a quarterfinal match 7-5, 6-4.

A week earlier down the coast in Elche, Spain, Musialek won three qualifying matches on clay against three Spaniards to advance to the main draw. In the first round, Musialek ran into Spain's Jose-Antonio Sanchez-De Luna ranked No. 440 in the world. Sanchez-De Luna took the first set 6-2 before edging the Wildcat 7-6(5) in the second to claim the match.

This week, Musialek fought his way through qualifying again, this time on the hard court, to play in the main draw in Bakio, Spain, nestled on the northern coast. He battles sixth-seeded David Canudas-Fernandez today in the first round.

•    Three Wildcats Descend Upon Decatur This Week

A trio of Cats is featured in the main draw of the latest Futures tourney in Decatur, Ill., this week. Current Wildcats Brad Cox and Eric Quigley have already made their mark in Illinois' Central City by fighting through qualifying rounds to advance to the main draw. Meanwhile, former UK standout Tigran Martirosyan is seeded third in the tourney.

Awaiting Martitrosyan in the first round is former LSU star Michael Venus. A wild card entry, Venus is ranked No. 803 while Martirosyan stands at No. 415 in the world.

Quigley defeated four foes in the qualifying draw to advance to the main bracket. The UK returning sophomore won all four of his matches in straight sets, yielding an average of just six games per match. The Pewee Valley, Ky., native faces fellow qualifier Patrick Daciek in the first round. Daciek will be a sophomore at Virginia Tech this fall.

Should Quigley and Martirosyan both win their matches they would meet each other in a second-round match.

In doubles, Quigley and Cox will team up to battle the top-seeded pairing of Luis Diaz-Barraga and Juan-Manuel Elizondo of Mexico in the first round. After earning 27 points for his semifinal run at the Lexington Challenger with former Wildcat Bruno Agostinelli, Quigley is ranked at No. 1,025 in the ATP doubles world rankings.

Cox also made a qualifying run to make the singles main draw by dispatching three fellow Americans. After two three-set wins, the Duluth, Ga., native rolled over Marek Czerwinski 6-2, 6-1 to earn his main draw entry. In the first round, Cox will face Italy's Andrea Falgheri ranked No. 821 in the world. After securing three tour points in Ireland in June, Cox stands at No. 1,411 in the latest rankings.

•    Former UK stars Agostinelli and Witten Ascend the Rankings

Former UK All-Americans Bruno Agostinelli and Jesse Witten have climbed the ATP tour rankings in recent weeks.

Agostinelli has attained career-high rankings in both singles and doubles during his first summer on the pro circuit. After advancing to the round of 16 at the Fifth Third Bank Tennis Championships in Lexington last month, the Niagara Falls, Canada, rocketed up the singles rankings to No. 1,180 in the world. In doubles, Agostinelli ranks 1,028 after partnering with former teammate Eric Quigley to advance to the semifinals of the Lexington Challenger.

Witten moved up to No. 261 in the world after he advanced to the quarterfinals of the Granby Challenger in Granby, Quebec, last week. In the doubles standings, Witten ranks No. 468 in the world.