Feb. 10, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State begins Big Ten conference play Sunday taking on the No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes at noon at the MSU Indoor Tennis Facility. Students are encouraged to come to the game to cheer on the Spartans as there will be free pizza, and t-shirts along with a raffle for a prize pack and free tennis lessons from coach Gene Orlando.
Ohio State Scouting Ohio State is currently ranked No. 3 in the nation, with a perfect 7-0 record, and all wins coming at home. They also captured their ITA Kick-Off Weekend Championship defeating Cornell and Indiana. The Buckeyes traveled to Louisville on Thursday for their first road match where they picked up a 6-1 victory over the Louisville Cardinals. Sunday's match-up also marks the Buckeye's first conference play action as well. Ohio State leads the all-time series against the Spartans 40-35 picking up a 7-0 victory last season over the Spartans as well as knocking them out of the Big Ten Tournament with a 4-0 win.
Last Time Out Last Saturday the Spartans swept their home doubleheader with wins over Detroit and Toledo. MSU began the day with a convincing 6-1 win over the Titans while only dropping one singles match. In the second match of the day MSU once again picked up a 6-1 victory over Toledo. The Spartans rallied back in two of the singles matches to win in a tie-breaker and only lose one singles point in the match.
Conference Kudos The Spartans have picked up two weekly Big Ten awards this season with the most recent recipient being Denis Bogatov last week. The Gurnee, Ill. native notched a 2-0 singles and 2-0 doubles record on Jan 14 and helped the Spartans improve to 3-0 in dual action in their tripleheader against Bradley, Morehead State and Wright State.
Earlier this season, Aaron Pfister also picked up an individual Big Ten accolade after being crowned the conference's indoor champion in Iowa City back in November 2011. The sophomore went undefeated, posting a perfect 6-0 singles record on his way to winning the title and also advanced to the final round of the Flight A doubles draw during the tournament.
Meet the Spartans The Michigan State men's tennis team will feature a student-athlete every week this spring in attempt to "Meet the Spartans". This week sophomore Ryan Richmond (Kalamazoo, Mich.) sat down with msuspartans.com to answer some questions about his favorite kinds of music and food. Check out his page here. Next week, Spartan fans will get to know sophomore Aaron Pfister.
Next Up MSU's next match is scheduled for Saturday Feb. 18 as the Spartans take on Western Michigan and Dayton in a doubleheader at the MSU Indoor Tennis Facility. The first match against Western Michigan begins at 10 a.m. and then the Spartans cap off the day against Dayton that night at 6 p.m.