Penn State Men's Tennis Hosts Three Matches This Weekend
Feb. 11, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State men's tennis team (3-2) will continue their homestand Saturday against No. 64 Cornell at noon. The Nittany Lions will then host a doubleheader Sunday, featuring Buffalo at 11 a.m. and Bucknell at 4 p.m. All matches will take place at the Penn State Indoor Tennis Center and admission is free for all matches.
The Nittany Lions dropped their first home match of season last time out, losing a heartbreaker to No. 56 N.C. State, 4-3. The Nittany Lions could not overcome a slow start as freshmen tandem Russell Bader (Austin, Texas) and Chris Young (Melbourne, Australia) fell 8-3 in second doubles and senior Eddie Bourchier (Hobart, Australia) and Jason Lee (Sydney, Australia) fell to N.C. State's Dominic Hodgson and Julian Sullivan in No. 1 doubles. Junior Chris Hasyn (Lansdale, Pa.) and sophomore Bryan Welnetz (Laredo, Texas) were able to win the No. 3 doubles bout, but with two wins in hand, N.C. State took an early 1-0 lead.
In singles action, Penn State got off to a fast start as Bader (3-6, 6-2, 6-3) and Welnetz (4-6, 6-4, 6-3) continued their winning ways, each rebounding from a one set deficit to give the Nittany Lions a 2-1 lead. Lee could not keep the momentum going though, as Hodgson staved off comeback attempt after comeback attempt to earn a second point for the Wolfpack (4-6, 6-2, 7-5). Bouchier and Young each fell before Hasyn delivered a victory in No. 6 singles (1-6, 6-4, 1-0 (11)).
Bourchier looks to continue his quest to become the Penn State career doubles victories leader this weekend. After a tough match against Hodgson and Sullivan, Bourchier remains at 67 career victories, six short of the record 73 wins.
The No. 64 Cornell Big Red (6-2) are led by first-year head coach Tony Bresky. The Big Red returns five seniors to the 2011 spring roster, which features 2010 All-Ivy League doubles honoree, Jeremy Feldman. Feldman posted a 17-5 singles record last season. The Big Red also welcome plenty of youth to a veteran team with seven freshmen joining the squad. Penn State and Cornell have met 12 times previously, with the Nittany Lions taking nine of those matches, including five straight.
In the first match of Sunday's doubleheader, Penn State will face Mid-American Conference (MAC) foe, Buffalo (2-1). The Bulls are led by reigning MAC Coach of the Year, Lee Nickell. Buffalo is anchored by a pool of talented upper classmen, including junior Wojciech Starakiewicz who returns in 2011 as the Bulls' No.1 singles player after posting a 16-7 record last season. The Nittany Lions have met the Bulls once previously, winning a 6-1 decision last season.
In the final match of the weekend, Penn State welcomes the Bucknell Bison (0-2) to the Penn State Indoor Tennis Center. Bucknell is led by head coach Rebecca Helt. The Bison return an experienced team, including last season's No. 1 singles player, Anton Kovic, who posted a 10-19 record in singles bouts last season. Penn State leads the all-time series with the Bison 21-1 with Bucknell's only victory coming in 1970.
The Nittany Lions will hit the road for their second away match of the season next weekend. Penn State will travel to Blacksburg, Va. to face the Virginia Tech Hokies Sunday, Feb. 20 at noon.