No. 5 Ohio State Host Doubleheader Tuesday
Feb. 3, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The No. 5 Ohio State men’s tennis team will continue its 2014 season with a doubleheader against Youngstown State and Wright State on Tuesday at the Varsity Tennis Center. The Buckeyes (5-0) will play the Penguins at 3 p.m. and the Raiders at 7 p.m. Admission for both matches is free.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS
The Penguins (1-2) placed fifth at the Horizon League Championships, finishing their season for the most wins the program had seen in over twenty years. Ohio State holds a 3-0 record against the Penguins, which includes a 7-0 victory for the Buckeyes last year. The Raiders (2-0) lost in the semifinals of the Horizon League Championships and finished with a 13-13 record. The Buckeyes lead their all-time series 8-0, with Ohio State claiming their last meeting at home last year, 4-0.
LAST TIME ON COURT
This past weekend, Ohio State qualified for the ITA Men’s Team Indoor Championship with 4-0 and 4-1 wins over No. 57 Denver and No. 48 Louisville, respectively. They played Toledo after the ITA Kick-Off Weekend and cruised to a 4-0 win. Redshirt junior Kevin Metka (Worthington, Ohio) led Ohio State with a 3-0 record in singles and 2-0 in doubles (one match was unfinished with the Buckeyes a game from winning). Redshirt freshman Ralf Steinbach (Halle, Germany) also garnered five victories over the weekend. The win over Toledo not only extended the Buckeye’s home win streak to 177-consecutive matches, but it also gave Coach Ty Tucker his 400th collegiate victory. Now in his fifteenth year of coaching, the nine-time Big Ten Coach of the Year holds a 400-61 record with Ohio State.
ROLA ROLLS AT THE AUSTRALIAN OPEN
Former Buckeye Blaz Rola (2011-2013) made his Grand Slam debut this month at the Australian Open and made his presence known. After three-consecutive victories in the qualifying draw, the four-time All American knocked out Argentine Frederico Delbonis, who defeated Roger Federer last year, in straight sets. He lost in the second round to Martin Klizan of Slovakia in four sets, but the tournament catapulted Rola to 152nd in the world, a career-high for the Slovenian.
After Wednesday’s doubleheader, the Buckeyes will face a tough test that upcoming weekend at home. On Friday Feb. 7, Ohio State will play No. 13 Kentucky at 6 p.m. at the Varsity Tennis Center. The Buckeyes own a 16-12 head-to-head record against the Wildcats, which includes a 6-1 victory on the road last season. Ohio State will have a day off before facing No. 9 Texas A&M on Sunday Feb. 9 at noon. The Buckeyes hold an even 4-4 record against the Aggies, with Texas A&M taking a tough 4-3 decision in College Station, Texas last year. The two matches should help Ohio State prepare for the ITA Team Indoors, held Feb. 14-17 in Houston, Texas. The Buckeyes reached the semifinals last year before losing to Virginia 4-3. Rola was named to the All-Tournament team at No. 1 singles, while he and Metka were named to the team at No. 3 doubles.