Diego Acosta begins the season as the top-ranked Purdue singles player as he is ranked No. 118 in the latest ITA College Tennis Poll.
Jan. 11, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -
The Purdue men's tennis team opens its 100th season in program history on Saturday on the Basham Courts at the Schwartz Tennis Center on Saturday. The Boilermakers will host Toledo, Butler, and IUPUI.
"We are very excited for the season to start," head coach Pawel Gajdzik said. "We've been practicing hard and I think the guys are eager to play. We bring in three quality teams and what I am looking for from our guys is hard competition and execution on the things we have worked on in practice."
The Boilermakers finished the 2012 season with a 10-16 record. The team returns all seven individuals from that team and adds three freshmen. Arthur Dobradin came to Purdue in the fall while Victor Hoyos and Mateus Silva joined the team earlier this month. The team boasts its deepest roster in recent history. Five individuals have competed at either the No. 1 or No. 2 singles spots.
Despite the wealth of experience on the team, sophomore Diego Acosta is the only Boilermaker ranked in the first ITA College Tennis poll of the spring season. Acosta checks in at No. 118 in the country. Classmate Evan Hawkins also returns and was a regular at the No. 6 singles spot.
Toledo opens its season in West Lafayette against the Boilermakers at 9 a.m. The Rockets finished the 2012 season with a 15-12 record, but dropped their final four contests. The team has three seniors and one junior, all which contribute in the middle of the lineup. Five sophomores fill up the majority of remaining playing spots, though exact positions are unavailable.
The Purdue vs. Toledo match is a homecoming for Rocket assistant coach Paul Foley. Foley was a four-year letterwinner from 2007-10. The former Boilermaker helped knock off the Rockets each of his four seasons on the team. Purdue is 8-1 all-time against Toledo and have won the last seven matchups. The last time the two teams met was 2010 when Purdue won, 6-1, and Foley won his match at No. 4, 6-1, 6-2.
At 2 p.m. Purdue will face Butler in the Bulldogs season opening match. The Bulldogs have a tough 2012 campaign going 4-21. The team is very young as six sophomores and two freshmen make up the eight man roster. The Boilermakers and Bulldogs have met 40 times on the courts in dual season history. Purdue holds a commanding 38-2 lead including 26 straight and every year since 2001. The last Butler win in the series came in 1957.
Purdue will close its opening day with a 7 p.m. match against IUPUI. The Jaguars open their season on Saturday with a match against Toledo on the Basham Courts at the Schwartz Tennis Center. IUPUI went 11-16 a year ago and return eight student-athletes from that team. The Jaguars have a 13-man roster with three seniors, one junior, five sophomores, and four freshmen. Purdue and IUPUI have met just once in dual match history. The Boilermakers won the 2011 match, 6-1.
Purdue's matches against Toledo and Butler will conclude once a team reaches four points in order to get every match played. There are also a number of rules changes that will be implemented for the beginning of the 2013 season. In doubles, once the point is decided, if a match remains it will be halted immediately. Also in doubles for non-conference play, unless mutually agreed upon by both coaching staffs, there will be no-ad scoring and the tiebreaker will be a 7-7, not 8-8. This means that if a game does to deuce, instead of playing for a team to win by two, the receiving team will choose a side, right or left, and that point will determine the game's winner. Other changes include limiting the number of medial timeouts to one per match and shortening that break to three minutes instead of five.
All of this weekend's action will take place on the Basham Courts inside the Schwartz Tennis Center. Live results can be found at PurdueSports.com as well as a free, live video stream of one select court. A live interactive blog will also be utilized for the 2013 season and fans are encouraged to participate in the conversation. Follow the team on Twitter @PurdueMT, @PurdueTennis, and @CoachPawel.