March 28, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The No. 60 Purdue men’s tennis team is set to host its first pair of Big Ten matches this season. The Boilermakers will take on No. 35 Michigan on Friday and No. 51 Michigan State on Sunday.
Purdue (14-4, 1-1 B1G) opened up conference play last weekend. The Boilermakers faced No. 5 Ohio State on Friday and Penn State on Sunday. Despite strong efforts from Mark Kovacs at No. 1 and Pawel Poziomski, who each took a set in their matches, the Buckeyes won Friday’s match 7-0. Purdue responded on Sunday. The team took it to the Nittany Lions and won five of the six singles matches as well as two of three doubles matches.
The Boilermakers have won five of their last six matches dating back to March 2. The team is 9-1 at home this season with the only loss coming 4-3 to Arkansas. Doubles has been an accurate predictor as Purdue is 14-0 when it wins the doubles point and is 0-4 when it does not. Krisztian Krocsko has the best singles record on the year as he is 13-2 and has won six in a row. Kovacs has been playing well and has a 9-6 singles record at the No. 1 and No. 2 singles spots.
Michigan (7-7, 2-1) split its conference matches last weekend. The Wolverines defeated Wisconsin, 6-1, before falling to Minnesota the next day, 4-3. Michigan is trying to shake a rough stretch from the middle of its season where it dropped five-straight matches. Three of those matches were 4-3 while the other two were 5-2. Evan King holds down the No. 1 spot for Michigan. He is the No. 15 player in the country and boasts a 13-1 record at the top singles spot. Barrett Franks has only turned up his game as he has rolled off five-straight singles wins between the No. 4 and No. 6 spots.
Michigan State (7-9, 1-2) also split last weekend’s conference matches. The Spartans fell to Minnesota, 4-3, before hanging a 7-0 win on Wisconsin the next day. Michigan State has dropped three of its last four matches with losses to Western Michigan and Michigan in addition to the Golden Gophers. The Spartans find most of their success at No. 4 singles. They are 14-2 at that spot that is typically held down by John Patrick Mullane. He is 7-2 at that spot and 10-4 on the season. Aaron Pfister is the No. 1 for Michigan State and is 7-8 on the year.
The Boilermakers and Wolverines will begin at 2 p.m. ET at the Schwartz Tennis Center on Friday. The Michigan State match is slated for noon on Sunday. Live video will be available for both matches unless the matches are played outside. A live blog will also be available on the Game Day Central page that will be launched prior to first serve on PurdueSports.com.