March 11, 2009
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The 75th-ranked Purdue women's tennis team travels to Columbus, Ohio, to take on No. 43 Ohio State Friday inside the Ohio State Varsity Tennis Center.
"Ohio State will be another battle for us," head coach Laura Glitz said. "We need to take the positives from the Illinois match and use the things we learned in that match against OSU. The team competed well in singles, and we need to have that competitive attitude and focus from the beginning of doubles until the end of singles. I know if we do that, good things will happen."
Purdue (5-5, 1-1) is ranked for the first time this season and plays its first match as a ranked team since Feb. 24, 2008. The Boilermakers have won two of their last three matches and are coming off a close, 4-3 loss to No. 51 Illinois on Sunday. After defeating Purdue, the Fighting Illini moved to No. 33 in this week's rankings.
The Boilermakers are led by freshman Jennifer Rabot, who boasts an 8-2 record in singles play. The Harlow, Essex, England, native has won three consecutive matches. Rabot also has teamed with fellow freshman Remi Martin, who plays at No. 5 singles, to put together a 5-5 record as Purdue's No. 2 doubles duo.
Senior co-captain Stephanie Wooten has a three-match winning streak of her own after a three-set victory at No. 2 singles. The Combine, Texas, native ended Illinois junior Megan Fudge's 15-match winning streak Sunday and improved to 6-3 this season. Wooten and junior Michelle Sammons, who has spent the last four matches at the No. 1 singles position, claimed an 8-0 victory against Illinois to improve to 7-3 this season at No. 1 doubles for the Boilermakers.
Anna Dushkina ranks second on the team with seven singles victories. The freshman from Odessa, Ukraine, is undefeated in conference play and is currently on a three-match winning streak, which is her longest this season. Junior co-captain Tatiana Ganzha brings a 6-4 singles record, which has been earned mainly at the No. 3 spot, into Friday's match. Dushkina and Ganzha round out Purdue's doubles lineup as the No. 3 tandem.
Ohio State (7-6, 1-0) has won four of its last five matches after suffering a four-match losing streak in the early part of February. The Buckeyes are 3-5 against ranked opponents this season and have won their last two matches against ranked competition. Ohio State is led by junior Kristen Flower, who was named Big Ten Player of the Week on March 3 and is 7-6 from the No. 1 position. Senior Angela DiPastina has a team-high nine singles wins in 2009.
Ohio State leads the all-time series, which dates back to 1976, 22-19. The Boilermakers and Buckeyes have split their eight matches since 2002, including a 6-1 Ohio State victory last season. Friday's match begins at 4 p.m. ET, and live results will be available at purduesports.com.