Nittany Lion Tennis Closes Season at Home vs. Wisconsin and Northwestern this Weekend
April 16, 2009
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - With the season quickly winding down, the Penn State men's tennis team will close out the regular season with two critical home matches vs. No. 30 Wisconsin and No. 44 Northwestern this weekend. The Nittany Lions will open up with Wisconsin on Friday at 3 p.m. followed by Northwestern on Sunday at 10 a.m. Both matches will be played at the Sarni Tennis Center.
Lynch and Slagter Conclude Careers at Home This Weekend
Senior captains Brendan Lynch (North Potomac, Md.) and Adam Slagter will have their final two home matches of their stellar careers this weekend. Lynch is 76-39 for his career in singles as a Nittany Lion. The 76 wins are good for tenth in program history. With one win this weekend, he could tie Jamie Gresh for ninth all-time, or with two win, he can pass Gresh to move into tied for seventh all-time.
Slagter made a nice return to the spring lineup this year after missing the fall with an ankle injury. The Texas native has 71 wins for his career in singles, and needs two to tie former teammate James Dwyer for 13th in program history. Slagter set a program record during the 2005-06 season when he notched 30 singles wins in a season.
Last Time Out
The Nittany Lions got back on track Wednesday, defeating the Bucknell Bison and the Bloomsburg Huskies. Penn State won both matches, 7-0, and outscored its opponents in games, 191-40.
In the match vs. Bucknell, Penn State came out and won the doubles point to garner the early 1-0 lead. Following the strong doubles play, the Nittany Lions cranked out victories in all six singles bouts to win the match, 7-0. Penn State came out to win the first two doubles matches vs. Bloomsburg, and eventually the third in a tiebreaker to gain the 1-0 advantage on the Huskies. The Lions then went on to win all six singles matches in straight sets to lock another 7-0 victory on the day. Senior Brendan Lynch (North Potomac, Md.), junior Guillaume St-Maurice (Saint-Eustache, Quebec) and freshman Chris Hasyn (Lansdale, Pa.) all earned two singles victories each.
The 30th-ranked Badgers head to Happy Valley winning five of its last seven matches. Wisconsin currently sits tied for fourth place in the Big Ten with a 4-4 conference record and 15-7 overall. The Badgers have defeated two ITA top 30 teams in No. 20 Wake Forest and No. 28 Notre Dame this year. Most recently, Wisconsin defeated No. 63 Iowa, 5-2, on April 12.
Leading the way for the Badgers is 28th-ranked Moritz Baumann, who is undefeated this year in singles, going 22-0. Baumann is 16-0 when playing in the No. 1 bout and 6-0 when playing in the No. 2 bout. Marek Michalicka is currently ranked 50th, with a 13-6 record in singles this spring. Baumann and Michalicka are ranked 19th in the country as a doubles tandem, going 17-3, all in the No. 1 spot.
Penn State holds a 6-13 record all-time vs. the Badgers. Last season, the Lions were clipped by Wisconsin, 4-3. Penn State clinched the doubles point winning two of the three doubles matches, but was only able to win two singles matches. Penn State's last victory over Wisconsin came on April 2, 2006 in a 5-2 victory.
The 44th-ranked Wildcats head to Ohio State Friday winning its last four matches. Of those last four victories, two of them came against No. 30 Wisconsin and No. 33 Minnesota, winning both by a score of 4-3. Northwestern sits tied for third in the Big Ten with a 5-3 conference record and 17-6 overall. Marc Dwyer leads the way for Northwestern, with an 11-11 record and a ranking of 121 in the ITA. Dwyer has seen the majority of his time in the No. 1 bout, going 10-11. Joshua Graves leads the team in wins, sporting an 18-3 record. Alex Sanborn is 17-6 in singles. Andrew McCarthy and Alexander Thams lead the team with a 14-4 doubles record.
Penn State is 4-15 all-time vs. Northwestern. The Nittany Lions have won the last three matches of the series, including a 7-0 clawing last year. Northwestern last defeated Penn State on April 3, 2005, in a close 4-3 win.
The Nittany Lions will head to the Big Ten Championships next week, beginning play either April 23 or 24. Last season at the Big Ten Championship, Penn State was edged by Michigan, 4-2, in the quarterfinals. The Lions' best finish at the Big Ten Championship was back in 2006, when they finished tied for third.