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2 Tournaments Await Iowa
Hawkeyes to play at Drake Invitational, Baylor-HEB Invitational
Marc Bruche (left) and Will Vasos (right) are the second highest ranked doubles tandem in the field.
Marc Bruche (left) and Will Vasos (right) are the second highest ranked doubles tandem in the field.
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Sept. 21, 2011

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THIS WEEK: The University of Iowa men's tennis team will be busy this weekend. Head coach Steve Houghton will take a group to the Drake Invitational while assistant coach Steve Nash takes two players to the Baylor-HEB Invitational.

DRAKE INVITATIONAL: The Drake Invitational is Friday through Sunday in Des Moines at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center. Action begins Friday at 3 p.m. and 8:30 a.m. the following days. There will be six teams at the event.

BAYLOR-HEB INVITATIONAL: Seniors Marc Bruche and Will Vasos will compete in Waco, Texas, at the 11th annual Baylor-HEB Invite. Action begins at 8 a.m. each day. Sixteen schools are represented in the field, which consists of a 64-player singles draw and a 32-team doubles bracket. Bruche and Vasos are the second highest ranked doubles team in the field at No. 41 nationally.

LAST WEEK: The Hawkeyes opened the fall season at the Purdue Invitational. Iowa fared well, going 15-12 in singles and 7-4 in doubles. In the Flight A singles main draw, sophomore Jonas Dierckx led Iowa with two straight wins. Freshman Matt Hagan won his first two collegiate matches, making it to the Flight B singles round of 16. Hagan and sophomore Chase Tomlins made it to the finals in the Flight B doubles main draw. Senior Christopher Speer won five straight matches after an opening round loss to win the Flight B singles consolation bracket. Speer and sophomore Joey White also won the Flight C doubles main draw.

SPEER MAKES MOST OUT OF FIRST ACTION: Playing in his first collegiate match, senior Christopher Speer provided the Hawkeyes with a big lift. Speer rallied to win the Flight B singles consolation bracket with five straight wins. Speer beat Western Michigan's Aaron Wong in the finals. In the Flight C doubles main draw, Speer and White won three straight matches to take the crown. The duo defeated Toledo's Terrence Weigand and Garret Cona 8-1 in the finals. Speer, from Vernon Hills, Ill., currently has the best singles and doubles record on the team.

HEAD COACH Steve Houghton: Steve Houghton, the dean of Big Ten tennis coaches, is in his 31st year as head coach of the Hawkeyes. He has compiled a career record of 331-341 (.493), recording the most wins of any coach in Iowa men's tennis history.

HOUGHTON ON TOURNAMENTS: "This weekend gives us a great opportunity for a variety of guys throughout our lineup to get experience. As for Marc and Will, they have a big chance to show themselves at a highly competitive tournament."

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