March 27, 2014
The No. 71 University of Iowa men's tennis team concludes its six-match road trip with a pair of matches in the state of Michigan. The Hawkeyes will face the No. 46 Michigan Wolverines Saturday before heading to East Lansing to take on Michigan State Sunday. Both matches will begin at noon locally.
HAWKEYES FALL TO No. 58 BADGERS
The Hawkeyes re-opened conference play with a 5-2 loss to the Wisconsin Badgers at the Nielsen Tennis Center on Sunday afternoon. Iowa, 9-5 (0-1), opened play taking the doubles point for the 11th time this season, with Alden/Swank and Hagan/White both picking up tiebreaker victories to secure the point. However, for just the second time this year, Iowa was unable to win the match after winning the doubles point. Wisconsin took 5-of-6 singles matches en route to a 5-2 victory. Junior Matt Hagan picked up a 7-6 (8-6), 2-6, 7-6 (7-3) victory at No. 4 singles for the Hawkeyes.
FOLLOW THE HAWKEYES
Fans can follow along all season to the Hawkeyes and receive live match updates on Facebook (facebook.com/IowaMensTennis) or on Twitter (@IowaMensTennis).
SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS
The Wolverines (9-8, 1-2) enter the match ranked No. 46 in the ITA rankings. Last time out, the Wolverines wrapped up their nonconference schedule with a 4-3 loss to No. 26 Louisville. In conference action, Michigan picked up a narrow 4-3 victory over Michigan State, while dropping matches to Ohio State (6-1) and Penn State (5-2). They are led by Alex Petrone and Vlad Stefan at the No. 1 and 2 singles positions, respectively, and by the team of Buzzi and Franks at No. 1 doubles.
Michigan State (6-10, 0-3) will host No. 58 Nebraska Friday evening prior to facing the Hawkeyes. The Spartans come off a pair of conference losses last week, dropping a 4-3 decision to Penn State and fell to Ohio State by a 5-2 final. Drew Lied and Arron Pfister lead a Spartan team that has claimed the last three meetings between the two schools.
HAWKEYES IN THE RANKINGS
The Hawkeyes are ranked 71st in the most recent ITA national rankings, released on March 25. Iowa is one of 11 Big Ten teams ranked in the polls along with Ohio State (2), Illinois (10), Penn State (23), Northwestern (28), Purdue (41), Michigan (46), Minnesota (50), Nebraska (58), Wisconsin (62), and Indiana (65).
IOWA DOUBLES STREAKING
The Hawkeyes have excelled in doubles play this season. In 11-of-14 matches this season, the Hawkeyes have claimed the doubles point. Senior Joey White leads the way with an 11-2 record at the No. 3 spot, having been paired with both junior Matt Hagan and freshman Nils Hallestrand. Junior Matt Hagan is currently riding a six match winning streak in doubles action, while redshirt senior Brian Alden was won six of his last seven doubles matches. Iowa is 9-2 overall when winning the doubles point, while holding an 0-3 mark when failing to claim the point.
HAWKEYES STARTING STRONG
The Hawkeyes are off to a hot start in 2014, posting a 9-5 record through their first 13 matches. The nine wins tops Iowa's win total from a year ago, when the Hawkeyes finished 7-17. Senior Jonas Dierckx and sophomore Dominic Patrick are leading the attack in singles action. Dierckx (10-4) has won six of his last seven matches, while Patrick started the season winning 10 of his first 11 matches.
Iowa has been stellar at home this season, posting a perfect 8-0 record in matches played at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex. The Hawkeyes are 1-0 against Big Ten teams at home, and 1-0 against ranked teams played in Iowa City.
FRESHMAN SHINES IN DEBUT
Making his college dual debut, freshman Nils Hallestrand delivered, posting two singles and two doubles wins to help the Hawkeyes sweep Illinois State and Western Illinois. He won a pair of doubles matches in the No. 3 spot with teammate Joey White, while also picking up victories in the No. 5 and No. 6 singles spot. This spring, Hallestrand is 5 -1 in singles play and 4-1 in doubles.
NEW ASSISTANT COACH Ross Wilson
Ross Wilson is in his first year as an assistant coach after serving last season as an assistant coach at San Diego. Wilson was named the 2012 ITA National Assistant Coach of the Year and ITA Central Region Assistant Coach of the Year in 2011 after he helped guide San Diego to a third-straight NCAA Tournament appearance. Wilson was a two-time NCAA All-American and three-time ITA national doubles champion during his playing days at Ohio State.
NEXT TIME OUT
The Hawkeyes return home for the first two matches of five straight matches in Iowa City. Iowa will host Purdue on Friday, March 4, with a 2 p.m. (CT) start time and will then face Indiana on Sunday, March 6, at noon. Both matches will take place at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex and are free to the public.