No. 45 Men's Tennis Opens Big Ten Season at Purdue on Sunday
Feb. 20, 2009
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - After a two week break from action, the 45th-ranked Penn State men's tennis team (4-4) will be back in action this Sunday as it travels to Purdue (3-4) on Sunday to open Big Ten play. The Nittany Lions are 10-12 all-time vs. the Boilermakers.
"We are looking forward to playing our first Big Ten match this Sunday at Purdue", said Head Coach Todd Doebler. "We expect it to be a tough road match and it will be a good challenge for our team."
Penn State most recently came out with two victories on Feb. 8, as the Lions downed Cornell and Lehigh, both by a score of 7-0. Senior Brendan Lynch (North Potomac, Md.) and freshman Jason Lee (Melbourne, Australia) each lead Penn State with five victories each in singles action. Lynch has won his last three matches over opponents from No. 32 Virginia Tech, Cornell and Lehigh. The senior is 3-0 when playing in the No. 1 position.
The doubles pairings of Lynch and junior Guillaume St-Maurice (Saint-Eustache, Quebec) and sophomore Eddie Bourchier (Hobart, Australia) and junior Ryan Gormley (Las Vegas, Nev.) each lead the Nittany Lions with six wins in doubles action. Lee and senior Adam Slagter (Austin, Texas) are 3-4 in doubles action this year in the No. 1 bout. The pairing earned a nice upset victory over Virginia Tech's 20th-ranked pairing of Nicolas Delgado and Luka Somen, 8-5, on Feb. 7.
Purdue returns six players from last year's squad, including junior Slavko Bijelica, who is 5-2 in the No. 1 bout for singles action this year. Slavko has also teamed up with Griff Nienberg in the No. 1 doubles bout, as the pairing has gone 4-3. Eric Ramos is 5-1, with two of his victories coming in the No. 2 position.
Last season vs. Purdue, Penn State pulled out a 6-1 victory in West Lafayette. Purdue showed winning signs early, cranking out the doubles point to earn the early 1-0 advantage. However, the Lions stormed back to win all six singles matches to walk out victorious.
Penn State had its second consecutive winning season in Big Ten play last year, marking a 6-4 record vs. conference foes. Additionally, three returning players, including Lynch, St-Maurice and Bourchier won seven Big Ten matches in 2008.
The Nittany Lions will return to the Penn State Indoor Tennis Center as they will take on the No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes. Last season, the Lions were downed by the Buckeyes, 6-1.