Lions Continue Long Road Stretch This Week in San Diego

Freshman Cristobal Rivera won in singles and doubles at UC Irvine last Friday.

Feb. 26, 2013

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LOS ANGELES -- LMU continues a stretch of six weeks away from the LMU Tennis Center face Toledo in a neutral site match in San Diego Thursday.

The LMU men’s tennis team has had its share of struggles this season. The Lions (0-7) put in a game effort but fell to the 75th-ranked Anteaters, 4-3. After securing the doubles point, the Lions lost four of six singles matches to UC Irvine (2-7).

The doubles round began with two victories by the Lions. Junior Sebastian Bustamante and freshman Cristobal Rivera closed out their match with UC Irvine’s Hammel and Shibahara, 8-1. The point was decided with sophomore Othar Kordsachia and senior Nick Northcott defeating Pham and Poon 8-4.

The Anteaters tied the match in singles at court one as Cheung defeated Kordsachia 6-3, 6-1. Poon defeated Simko 6-3, 6-4 to put UC Irvine up a point. Rivera got a victory over Hammel 6-4, 6-3 to tie the match at two points apiece. Pham put the Anteaters on the cusp of victory with a win over Volmari 2-6, 6-3, 6-2. Nineteenth-ranked Jung wrapped up the match with a 6-1, 6-7, 6-0 win over Northcott. In the final contest, Bustamante defeated Agbayani 6-7 (6), 6-3, 6-3.

Toledo continued its recent success on the road by delivering Wisconsin-Green Bay a 5-2 loss at Marquette’s Helfaer Tennis Center. UT improved to 13-6 on the season a day after beating Marquette University by the same score on Saturday night in Milwaukee.

“Our guys are realizing just how good they really are,” UT head coach Al Wermer said. “Week-in-and-week-out they’re showing their toughness and spirit. These wins make us even more motivated to come to practice next week and work even harder.”

LMU student-athletes are no strangers to giving back to the local community. LMU men’s tennis is continuing the athletics’ department’s outreach efforts by establishing “Kids Days” at four matches this upcoming season. In association with the United States Tennis Association and the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, LMU men’s tennis will create a fun, learning environment for the youth in celebration of tennis.

At LMU’s “Kids Days” matches, families are invited to attend a free collegiate men’s tennis match at the LMU Tennis Center. Free pizza and drinks will be provided and at the conclusion of the match, the LMU men’s tennis team will conduct a free kids clinic for those in attendance. This season’s “Kids Day” matches include Saturday, Match 24 versus Sacramento State; Saturday, April 13 versus Saint Mary’s; and Saturday, April 20 versus BYU. This Saturday’s match will begin at 12:00 p.m. while the other three matches will start at 1:30 p.m.

For more information about LMU “Kids Days” contact head coach Brad Sceney at

The Loyola Marymount men’s tennis team are predicted to finish seventh in the West Coast Conference according to a poll of the conference’s coaches released earlier this season.

At, Lions’ All-Access continues its profile series, Inside the Lions Spotlight, with freshman Cristobal Rivera. In the video interview, Cristobal talks about his first collegiate season, the importance of his parents, and his great career at Santa Monica High. You can view the video at:

The Lions are an experienced team this season. With eight returners and only two newcomers, LMU will field a veteran squad most matches. Senior Nicholas Bjerke returns to lead the Lions. The Oslo, Norway native earned honorable mention on the All-WCC team for singles play. Bjerke was named WCC player of the month in February after five consecutive singles wins in the month. Bjerke and playing partner junior Sebastian Bustamante went 7-4 at the number one spot in doubles and the pair was named the the All-WCC second team in doubles. Redshirt senior Jack Zapala returns after missing the 2011-12 season due to injury.

Junior Daniel Simko finished 12-13 in singles play at the number five and six spots in 2012 and posted an 11-16 record in doubles matches in 2012. Sophomores Todd Volmari, Felix Van Kann and Robin Kiyabu gained valuable experience and wins during their first campaigns.

Joining the team this year are sophomore transfer Othar Kordsachia from Denver University and freshman Cristobal Rivera. Kordsachia went 16-17 in singles matches at the number four, five, and six spots and went 16-18 in doubles matches in 2012 at Denver. Rivera had a distinguished high school career at Santa Monica High School where he was a four-year varsity letter winner and captained his team to three consecutive league titles and two-time CIF finals while also being a CIF individual runner-up and going undefeated during his senior year.

HEAD COACH Brad Sceney
Brad Sceney is in his sixth year as head coach of the Loyola Marymount men’s tennis team. Sceney came to the bluff after serving as the Director of Tennis at The Paseo Club in Valencia, Calif., and enjoying an All-American collegiate career at Pepperdine from 1995-98. An All-American while at Pepperdine, Sceney helped the Waves to a top-10 ranking each of his four seasons in Malibu. His mark of 85 career singles victories is still the Pepperdine record today.

Sceney has led the Lions to three straight fifth-place finishes in the WCC. Overall in the five years that Sceney has been at LMU, the Lions have finished 5th in 2012, 2011 and 2010, 6th in 2009 and 5th in 2008. The Lions were 10-14 overall and 3-4 in conference last season. An All-American while at Pepperdine, Sceney helped the Waves to a top-10 ranking each of his four seasons in Malibu. His mark of 85 career singles victories is still the Pepperdine record today. In 1996, Sceney won the All-American Doubles Championship.

Paajanen enters his fourth season under coach Sceney. Previously, Paajanen coached at Paradise Valley Community College in Phoenix, AZ (2004-2005), where his father, Jim, is still the head coach. Paajanen was a 2001-2002 NJCAA All American at Cowley College coached by legendary coach and hall of famer Larry Grose.

From 2002-2004, Aaron played tennis at Point Loma University where he was team captain and held a career winning percentage of .780. After finishing his collegiate career, Paajanen briefly played the ITF/USTA pro circuit before going into full time coaching.





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