Men's Tennis Ready for NCAA Tournament
Michigan State will face No. 25 Tulsa on Friday.
May 8, 2013
|2013 NCAA Men's Tennis Tournament|
|Date | Time||Friday, May 10 | 4:00 p.m. ET|
|Location||Waco, Texas | Hurd Tennis Center|
|Tickets||Available by calling (254) 710-1000 | $5|
|Tournament Central||Baylor Regional|
|Live Video (Free)||BaylorBears.com|
|Statistics||Michigan State | Tulsa|
|Social Media||@MSU_Tennis | Facebook|
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State tennis heads to the NCAA tournament for the first time in program history and will take on Tulsa on Friday, May 10 in Waco, Texas. The Spartans ended the year 14-13 to earn the first at-large bid since the team tournament began in 1972.
"We're really excited, it's been a quick week," head coach Gene Orlando said. "We've been practicing hard and look forward to the opportunity to go play. It's been great to have the support from our community and the fans. I'd like to thank themfor their support over al the years, not just this year. If it wasn't for the support in the past we wouldn't be here today. We are looking forward to doing some bigger things this weekend and continue it in the future."
The 2013 NCAA Tournament Michigan State will take on Tulsa in the Baylor regional. The Bears finished the season 20-5 and finished second in the Big 12 Championship, earning the right to host a regional. If the Spartans advance, they will face the winner of Baylor and Prairie View on Saturday. Both matches will be streamed live on BaylorBears.com and also have live stats and a live blog.
The first and second regional rounds are scheduled for May 10-11, with the final rounds set for May 16-21 in Urbana, Ill.
In the 100th year of Michigan State tennis, the Spartans earned the program's first bid to the NCAA Tournament. MSU earned an at-large bid into the team tournament for the first time since its inception in 1972.
"It means a lot, it's a big year for us," Orlando said. "We've been celebrating 100-years of Spartan Tennis and to clinch our first ever NCAA berth on the 100th anniversary is really special. It's been a special year in many ways."
ABOUT THE SPARTANS
The Spartans finished the season playing their most consistent tennis of the year, winning seven of their last ten matches that included seven ranked opponents. MSU notched seven total wins over ranked opponents throughout the season, including a 6-1 win over No. 16 Vanderbilt and a 4-3 win over No. 17 South Carolina.
MSU finished 14-13 on the season and 6-5 in Big Ten play. Junior Aaron Pfister worked all season in the No. 1 singles position and posted a 13-12 mark. At No. 2 singles, Drew Lied went 12-12. JP Mullane paced the Spartans in the No. 4 spot and finished the season with a 17-5 dual record. At doubles, Harry Jadun and Gijs Linder went 9-10 in the No. 1 spot and Mullane and Lied finished 12-2 splitting time between No. 2 and No. 3.
A LOOK AT TULSA
Tulsa is making its 15th NCAA Championship appearance, and its eighth straight trip to the tournament. They finished 15-7 overall this season and fell to Memphis in the Conference USA Championship to end the season. Freshman Carlos Bautista enters this weekend riding an 11-match winning streak in singles competition, while junior Clifford Marsland holds a 10-match winning streak. On the year, 12 of Tulsa's 15 wins have come against ranked foes, while all seven of the TU losses were at the hands of top-35 teams, including two losses to top-10 teams.
ALL-BIG TEN HONORS
Junior Aaron Pfister and junior Drew Lied each earned Big Ten conference honors at the Big Ten Tournament on April 25. Pfister took home first team recognition for the second straight season while Lied was named to the second team. Senior Denis Bogatov represented the Spartans as a Sportsmanship Honoree.
Pfister was one of 13 athletes nominated to the first-team, marking the second consecutive year he has been selected. Pfister is the first Spartan to earn back-to-back nominations since Nick Rinks did in 2006 and 2007. Pfister has led the Spartans in the No. 1 position all season, posting 13 singles victories throughout the dual season and 17 overall.
Drew Lied finished the season with 15 singles victories and a 7-4 mark in conference play. He is one of five athletes to be named to the second-team. His 11 victories on court two are the third most on the team at any position.
BIG TEN TOURNAMENT WIN
The Spartans edged Nebraska, 4-3, in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament in a match that came down to the final set. The Spartans trailed 3-1 after dropping the doubles point but rallied to win four straight singles matches.
The Spartans got a much-needed second point in the No. 2 slot from Drew Lied, who was able to come back after falling in the first set to earn a 2-6, 7-6, 6-0 win over Stenger.
Mullane and Jadun would be the deciding factors for MSU on courts four and six. Both were able to take the first set, as Mullane topped Tom Blackwell 7-5 and Jadun defeated Andrew Dzulysky, 6-3. With a 7-5 victory in the final set over Blackwell, Mullane tied up the match at three, leaving the point at No. 6 as the deciding factor for the match.
Dzulysky was able to earn a victory in the second set over Jadun 7-5, sending the match into a third set to determine who would advance to the second round. With the pressure on, the sophomore was able to come through for the Spartans with a 6-3 victory that sealed the win
HEAD COACH Gene Orlando
Head coach Gene Orlando is in his 22 season as head coach of the Spartans and earned his 300th career win earlier this season. The Spartan coach earned the milestone win at Purdue on March 31. He now has compiled 306 career wins.