Nittany Lion Tennis Pounds Purdue in First Round of Big Ten Tournament, 4-0
April 23, 2009
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - The Penn State men's tennis team opened the Big Ten Tournament with a nice victory on Thursday over the Purdue Boilermakers, 4-0. With the win, the Nittany Lions will face the Illinois Fighting Illini on Friday at 2 p.m.
Penn State came out and won all three doubles matches to clinch the doubles point. The Lions then went on to win in the No. 1, 3 and 5 bouts to clinch the match. All singles victories came in straight sets.
In doubles action, the pairing of junior Guillaume St-Maurice (Saint-Eustache, Quebec) and senior Brendan Lynch (North Potomac, Md.) earned the first doubles victory for the Nittany Lions, as they downed Purdue's Thomas Wilson and Eric Ramos, 8-5. Lynch and St-Maruice jumped out to an early 6-2 lead, and secured the victory.
Purdue made things interesting in the No. 2 doubles bout when junior Ryan Gormley (Las Vegas, Nev.) and freshman Eddie Bourchier (Hobart, Australia) were defeated by Purdue's Branko Kuzmanovic and P.J. Rose, 9-7. Gormley and Bourchier lead early, 6-4, but were unable to hold on.
The doubles point was clinched in the No. 1 matchup. Senior Adam Slagter (Austin, Texas) and freshman Jason Lee (Melbourne, Australia) beat Purdue's Slavko Bijelica and Griff Nienberg, 9-8 (3) in a nice comeback victory. The Nittany Lion duo found themselves down 7-5, but stormed back and forced a tiebreaker. In the tiebreaker, Lee and Slagter won, 7-3.
With Penn State leading 1-0, the match moved to singles action. In the No. 1 matchup, Lynch defeated Bijelica in straight sets, 6-3, 6-0, to give the Lions an early 2-0 advantage. Lynch had a 4-3 lead in the first set and won the final two games. In the second set, Lynch had no problem with Bijelica, sweeping him 6-0.
Penn State increased its lead to 3-0 when St-Maurice defeated Roberto Cabrini in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3, in the No. 5 bout. St-Maurice dominated the first set as he jumped out to a 5-0 lead and never looked back. In the second set, he came back from a 2-1 deficit to win the match.
Lee clinched the match for the Nittany Lions on court No. 3 as he defeated Ramos in straight sets, 6-3, 7-5. Lee was tied with Ramos in the first set at two, but won four out the next five games to gain the set advantage. In the second set, he squandered out a 7-5 win to clinch the match for Penn State with the score being 4-0.
With the match decided, three matches went unfinished. Slagter took on Kuzmanovic in the the No. 2 matchup. Slagter won the final three games of the first set to have the advantage over Kuzmanovic. In the second set however, Kuzmanovic squeaked out the 7-5 win to force a third set. Slagter was down 1-0 when the match came to an end. Additionally, Bourchier was forced to a third set and Gormley was down one set when play concluded.
Penn State will take on a challenging Illinois team tomorrow in Ann Arbor. Earlier this season, the 14th-ranked Illini downed the Lions, 7-0 in Champaign. The winner of tomorrow's match will face the winner of Minnesota and Indiana on Saturday.
Final Score: #51 Penn State 4 def. Purdue 0