Iandolo Named Big Ten Coach-of-the-Year
Led women's tennis to best ever conference season.
May 5, 1998
Mat Iandolo, head coach of the Purdue women's tennis team, was named 1998 Big Ten Coach-of-the-Year for his efforts in guiding the Boilermakers to their best ever conference season. Iandolo, currently in his seventh year at the helm of the program, played a major role in what has been considered one of the best seasons in Boilermaker tennis history. Purdue finished with a 14-10 overall record, 8-2 Big Ten mark and tied for its highest conference finish ever at fourth (also 1995).
"This award means a lot to me because it not only commends you for doing a good job of coaching, but also recognizes the success of your team," said Iandolo. "Also, I think of it as a shared award with Chris (Karges-Iandolo, Mat's assistant coach and wife), as she has as great an impact on coachingthis team as I do."
The success of the 1998 Boilermaker squad is the highlight of Iandolo's career in West Lafayette. Despite starting out the season at 0-3, the Boilermakers regrouped to post upset victories over 22nd-ranked Northwestern (4-3, March 1) and 28th-ranked Michigan (6-1, March 21). Those two victories spurred Purdue to an eight-match Big Ten win streak, helping the Boilers claim the No. 2 seed, their highest ever, at the regular season-ending Big Ten Championship tournament at Madison, Wis. Purdue advanced to the semifinals of that event before bowing out to eventual champion Indiana.
Another highlight of the season was an April 19 victory over rival Indiana. The Boilers defeated the Hoosiers 5-2 in Bloomington for their first ever win against Indiana in 38 attempts. The aforementioned win against Northwestern marked Purdue's first ever win against the Wildcats, as well.
Iandolo's top two singles and doubles players, Mary Beth Maggart (Spring, Texas) and Jennifer Embry (Houston, Texas) were named All-Big Ten, marking the first time in the 22-year history of the program that two Boilermakers have received that recognition in the same season.
Purdue, which is currently ranked 45th in the nation, will continue play at the NCAA Regionals in Champaign, Ill., on May 15-17.