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For Immediate Release: January 16, 2007
Contact: John Hartrick (hartrick@binghamton.edu)
Phone: 607-777-6800

BU men's tennis bolsters lineup heading into spring season
Recruits from India, Switzerland, give Bearcats even more firepower

VESTAL, N.Y. -- Binghamton men's tennis coach Adam Cohen has hit the recruiting trail hard since arriving on campus two years ago, and his 2008 Bearcats are poised to showcase their collective talent as the spring season begins this weekend. Cohen's team, which features two regionally-ranked players and student-athletes from eight different countries, opens at the Army Invite before taking on nationally-ranked Penn State in their first dual on January 26.

The lineup, which completed a solid fall campaign, received a boost when Cohen brought in Arnav Jain (Mumbai, India) and Gregoire Berner (Troinex, Switzerland). Both players will play key roles for a team that is already loaded with individual talent from overseas.

Jain won the Under 18 national championship in India as a 16-year-old, and has represented his country in tournaments throughout Asia. He has played extensively on the ITF junior circuit, where he was ranked as high as 229 (in the world).

Berner was ranked No. 5 in Switzerland in juniors, and won the Swiss West Championship in 2001. He has been ranked as high as 111 in the country.

"I am thrilled to get both Arnav and Gregoire here for the spring semester," Cohen said. "It was my primary objective to have one of the top recruiting classes in the Northeast and with the final addition of these two, I believe we've accomplished that goal. In total we have seven new faces for the 2007-08 season and all of them will be instrumental in shaping our program as we move forward."

Regionally-ranked Mohamed and Dietz anchor lineup at top
Jain and Berner join a lineup that features two ranked players at the top - senior Faisal Mohamed (Lynbrook, N.Y.) and junior Sebastian Dietz (Leun, Germany). Mohamed finished the fall season ranked No. 20 in the ITA Northeast Region, and Dietz was 28th. It is the first time in BU's Division I tenure that two players have been regionally ranked.

Mohamed went 8-3 in the fall season, advancing to the round of 16 at the ITA Northeast Regional. Dietz went 9-6 in the fall and was a finalist at the season-opening Virginia Invitational and also reached the semifinals at the Virginia State Open.

"Mohamed and Dietz will be 'tough outs' for any team we play this spring," Cohen said. "Both of them are going to get shots against numerous top-10 ranked players in our region and I fully expect them to be up to that challenge."

Returning to the lineup after an injury is senior Alex Dobrin (Flushing, N.Y.), who has 58 career singles wins and joined Mohamed to form BU's top doubles tandem a year ago. Dobrin missed the entire fall season but is back in form.

Sophomore Moshe Levy (Ra'ananna, Israel), who won 15 matches at third and fourth singles a year ago, is back to strengthen the bottom of the lineup - a key component in the team's fortunes.

"Being involved in Division I tennis for more than a decade, I know that matches are won at the bottom of the lineup and having solid doubles play," Cohen said. "It will our goal to improve in those areas, and I firmly believe we have the depth and talent to do that."

Beefed-up schedule should pay dividends
The team's spring schedule has been significantly upgraded, and includes 26 dual matches leading into the America East Championship on April 25-27. Cohen scheduled six matches against 2007 NCAA tournament teams (UMBC, FDU, Western Michigan, Columbia, Manhattan, Penn State) and additional dates against elite programs Harvard, Brown, Georgetown, George Washington, St. Joseph's and Boston College. Penn State is ranked No. 40 in the country, Harvard is No. 73 and the Bearcats will also face 74th-ranked Brown.

"Even though we finished below .500 last season, it will always be a primary concern of mine to play the best schedule I can put together for our guys," Cohen said.

Returning to NCAA Championship a goal
The Bearcats hope to be playing their best tennis at the end of April, when the three-day America East Championship is held in New Haven, Conn. After winning three straight conference titles from 2003-05, BU has come up short in back-to-back seasons, and Cohen has his eye on the crown and its automatic berth into the NCAA Championship.

"We have three seniors on this team that haven't been to the NCAA tournament since they were freshmen. I would like to see them get back there one more time before their collegiate careers are finished."

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