March 30, 2012
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The No. 33 Purdue women's tennis team looks to bounce back this weekend as the team returns home for the first time since Feb. 19. The Boilermakers will host No. 14 Michigan on Saturday and Michigan State on Sunday.
Purdue (10-2, 2-1 Big Ten) is coming off its first loss since January. The Boilermakers fell in a heartbreaker, 4-3, at Penn State. That match came down to the final set on the No. 6 singles court. Anna Dushkina held the edge, 4-1, in that final frame, but the Nittany Lions were able to come back and win that set, 6-4, to win the match. Prior to that match, the Boilermakers went on the road and knocked off Ohio State, 4-3. Purdue's other Big Ten match was against Indiana with the Boilermakers winning, 6-1.
Michigan (10-5, 3-0) has won three straight matches including a 5-2 win against then-No. 17 Notre Dame. The Wolverines' record is a bit deceiving because despite having five losses, all of them have come against teams in the top 17 including three in the top 10. The Wolverines have four singles players ranked in the latest polls. Freshman Emina Bektas, an Indianapolis, Ind., native leads the bunch with the nation's No. 10 overall ranking. Brooke Bolender is No. 65 in the nation while Mimi Nguyen is No. 114. Sam Critser rounds out the group as she is ranked No. 121. Michigan also has the nation's No. 7 doubles team of Bektas and Bolender.
Michigan State (8-6, 0-3) has dropped two matches in a row and four of its last five. The Spartans have also struggled in Big Ten play as they have picked up just three total points in the three matches combined. The Green and White do have a perfect 5-0 record against teams from the Mid-American Conference. The Spartans will play at Indiana before making the trip to West Lafayette.
Michigan holds a 33-13 edge over the Boilermakers in the all-time series. The Wolverines have also won seven in a row. Purdue holds a 25-14 edge over the Spartans. The Boilermakers have won three in a row in the series and 18 of the last 20.
The Boilermakers and Wolverines are scheduled to start at noon on Saturday at the Schwartz Tennis Center. Live results will be available at PurdueSports.com. Purdue and Michigan State will being at noon on Sunday, also with live results. Both matches are scheduled to be played outdoors, but could be forced indoors depending on the weather.