Boilers Face Ninth-Ranked Gators in the Swamp

Dual season begins tommorrow

Jan. 30, 1998

The dual match season begins tomorrow for the Purdue men's tennis team. To start things off, the Boilermakers will take on ninth-ranked Florida in Gainesville on Jan. 31. Purdue is ranked 48th in the latest Rolex Collegiate Tennis poll.

"There is no question that this will be a big challenge for us," said Purdue coach Tim Madden. "Florida is a very talented team with a lot of depth. But we have been preparing for these kindsof matches for the last two years and we feel we are up to it." The Boilermakers played Florida in the Gator Invitational last fall. Purdue won three of eight singles matches in that individual event. Oneof those victories, a 6-4, 6-2 straight set decision by junior Jamie Gordon, came over the Gators' Justin O'Neal, the 10th-ranked player in the nation.

"Certainly the fact that Jamie was able to knock off O'Neal last fall gives all of our guys a bit more confidence going into tomorrow's match," said Madden.

Gordon, Purdue's top player, will likely face O'Neal again in the No. 1 position. Juniors Cris James and Derek Myers will play at the No. 2 and No. 3 spots, respectively. Senior Steve Brizendine and freshmen Jason Marshall and Dan Swan will likely round out the singles lineup for Purdue. In doubles, the 12th-ranked James and Myers duo will enjoy a rematch with the 26th-ranked team of Jon Glover and Nathan Overholser. Last fall, these two teams fought tooth and nail before Glover and Overholser emerged with a 9-8 victory. "We are really looking forward to this match," said Madden. "Going up against this caliber of team will really show us how we are progressing." The match is scheduled to begin at noon. On Feb. 1, the Boilermakers will face 67th-ranked South Florida in Tampa.