March 18, 2011
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State men's tennis team begins its conference schedule this weekend, as it hosts in-state rival University of Michigan on Sunday, March 20 at 2 p.m. at the MSU Indoor Tennis Facility. The Spartans are coming off their closest win of the season where they took down then No. 47 DePaul, 4-3, after losing the doubles point for only the third time this season. The Spartans enter the week with a No. 42 ranking in the weekly ITA poll and a 13-1 record.
Scouting the Spartans
MSU has enjoyed success at the top of the singles lineup from sophomore Denis Bogatov and Ronnie Hulewicz who are a combined 16-4 at the No. 1 and 2 spots. The freshman duo of Drew Lied and Aaron Pfister have also been a pleasant surprise for the Green and White, posting a combined 17-1 record in singles competition. Pfister remains unbeaten in the 2011 season, with an 11-0 record at the No. 5 position.
Pfister has paired with senior Austin Brooks throughout the doubles lineup to build a 5-3 record, while Seniors Jason Norville and John Stratton have paced the Spartans at the top of the lineup for the majority of the season with a 6-3 record.
The University of Michigan enters the weekend with a 7-5 record and is ranked 16th in the ITA poll, which is good for third in the Big Ten Conference behind Ohio State and Illinois. The Wolverines rely heavily on the top of their lineup, where 20th ranked Evan King and No. 60 Jason Jung are a combined 17-5 in duals. Outside of the top two spots, Michigan has posted a 21-22 record. Expect the duo of King and Jung to pair up at No. 1 doubles, where they are ranked 18th in the ITA polls and boast a 6-3 record in dual matches.
Last Year vs. Opponents
MSU fell to the Wolverines in last years competition, 6-1, as Clark Richardson earned the only point for the Spartans by taking down Duncan Muil, 7-5, 6-4, in the No. 6 singles slot.
Next Up The Spartans continue conference action next weekend when they travel to face the Hoosiers of Indiana on Friday, March 25 at 2 p.m. before traveling to West Lafayette to face Purdue on Sunday, March 27 at 12 p.m.