No. 35 Women's Tennis Set to Open Conference Play at Ohio State
March 1, 2013
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The No. 35 Nittany Lions (9-0, 0-0) travel to Columbus, Ohio to take on the Ohio State Buckeyes in their conference opener Sunday at noon. The match can be seen live online here
Following a pair of wins including their 6-1 pounding of No. 49 VCU last weekend, Penn State jumped 13 spots in the rankings to No. 35 this week. The ranking is the highest in over a decade for the Nittany Lions. In 2001 when they advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first and only time in program history, the Nittany Lions ranked as high as No. 43 in the nation.
Penn State comes into Columbus having three players with undefeated records in either singles or doubles play. Chelsea Utting and Jacqueline Zuhse are both perfect in singles play this spring with a 9-0 and 8-0 record respectively. Senior Sarah Henderson has also won both of her doubles matches on the season.
Petra Januskova, ranked No. 47 in this week's singles poll, is 8-1 in singles competition and 6-2 in doubles play on the season, with all but one of those matches coming in the No. 1 position. Carmen Sandor comes to Columbus with her impressive 7-1 doubles record while Devan McCluskey brings her 5-1 record in doubles.
The Nittany Lions are 16-29 all-time versus Ohio State. Before their 4-3 upset victory over the No. 57 Buckeyes last season in Happy Valley the Nittany Lions had lost six straight matches to Ohio State. The Buckeyes got the last laugh last season ending Penn State's season in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament knocking the Nittany Lions off 4-2.
Ohio State enters the match with a 5-4 record, with all four losses coming in their last five games. Each of their losses has come against ranked opponents this season including a 6-1 defeat against Tennessee and Tulsa, and a 4-3 loss to Kentucky. This match is their second conference battle of the season having lost their opener to No. 17 Nebraska, 4-2.
The Buckeyes are ranked No. 55 this week, moving up six spots from the previous week. Kelsey Dieters leads the Buckeyes with her singles ranking of No. 46, one spot above Januskova. Dieters moved up seven spots in the poll from last week and has 13 singles victories to her name already this season. Fidan Manashirova also finds her way into the singles poll at No. 122.
This will be Penn State's second straight match versus a ranked opponent as they look to get their tenth straight win to start the season. Aside from live video of the match, there will also be live scoring which can be found here.
Following their match with Ohio State the Nittany Lions will head to South Carolina where they'll face No. 72 College of Charleston on Saturday at 2 p.m.