Two Cougars compete at ITA

Despoina Vogasari and Maria Andrea Cardenas, two newcomers to the women’s tennis team, will compete at the prestigious Riviera/ITA All-American Championships beginning Sept. 28 at the Riviera Tennis Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif.

The teammates will become the first UH representatives at the All-American Championships since Biljana Dimovska in 2004.

“The All-American is the premier outdoor fall college tournament, and the field is chosen by the coaches, so we definitely appreciate that even as rookies, Debbie and Maria have earned enough respect nationwide to be selected,” said head coach Patrick Sullivan. “It has been a bit of a drought for the Coogs as far as selections go, but I fully expect this to be the beginning of an annual tradition. We will not be heading to California as tourists; we will spend the next few weeks preparing and will head to Los Angeles expecting to make a deep run in the tournament.”

The All-American Championship dates back to 1983, and the Riviera Tennis Club has played host to the event since 1988. It is the premier fall tournament in college tennis and features the top 128 players at the NCAA Division I level, as voted by coaches.

Vogasari, who was recently tabbed by the ITA as the nation’s sixth-ranked freshman, earned a spot in the prequalifying singles draw and has the opportunity to be the first Cougar to reach the main draw since Kathy Foxworth in 1987.

Cardenas, a native of Caracas, Venezuela, joins Vogasari as alternates in the doubles draw, and the duo is expected to earn a spot in the competition.

The Cougars will kick off the 2013 fall tournament season Sept. 20, where split squads will compete at the Islander Open in Corpus Christi and the Little Rock Invitational in Arkansas.

Men’s basketball adjustments

The men’s basketball team continues to prepare for the 2013-14 season in the American Athletic Conference, as the program announced several adjustments to its schedule on Wednesday.

The Cougars’ non-conference showdown against Texas A&M on Dec. 4 will air on Fox Sports Networks. It will be one of 21 televised games for the Cougars this season. That includes all 18 American games, starting Dec. 31 against UConn inside Hofheinz Pavilion.

In addition, one game time was announced and another game time was adjusted for television. The Cougars’ first American Athletic Conference road contest at USF will tip at 3 p.m. Jan. 4, 2014 in Tampa, Fla.

The Cougars’ Jan. 19, 2014 game against Rutgers inside Hofheinz Pavilion has been moved up to a noon tip to accommodate television. That game will air on CBS Sports Network.

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