PREVIEW: Ohio State at Northwestern & Illinois
April 20, 2017

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Ohio State at Northwestern & Illinois

Date:

April 21 & April 23, 2017

Time:

7 p.m. ET & 1 p.m. ET

Venue:

Evanston, Ill. | Urbana, Ill.

Live Video:

Northwestern Video | Illinois Video

Online Coverage:

Northwestern Live Scoring |Illinois Live Scoring

ITA Rankings:

Team | Singles | Doubles

Current Team Rankings

2. Ohio State
21. Northwestern
25. Illinois


Setting The Scene

  • Ohio State has clinched a share of its 12th straight Big Ten title and can claim an outright crown with a win this weekend on the road at Northwestern and Illinois.
  • The Buckeyes will take on No. 21 Northwestern Friday evening at 7 p.m. ET and then finish the regular season at Illinois on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.
  • Ohio State is the only undefeated team in the conference at 9-0 while Illinois and Michigan are tied for second at 7-2 heading into the final weekend.

 

BUCKEYES IN A NUTSHELL

  • The Buckeyes are Big Ten Champions for the 12th-straight season and the 16th time overall.
  • Ohio State is just the 8th program in Big Ten history in any sport to win 12 or more straight Big Ten titles.
  • OSU is 24-3 on the season and a perfect 9-0 in conference play
  • The Buckeyes have won eight matches this season over top-20 ranked foes.
  • OSU’s three losses have been close losses against top 10 teams. They have been defeated 4-1 by No. 3 Virginia 4-1, and 4-3 by No. 6 Texas and No. 7 Texas A&M.
  • The Buckeyes impressive resume includes wins over No.1 Wake Forest, No. 8 Oklahoma State (sweep), No. 12 Florida, No. 13 Oklahoma (two sweeps), No. 14 Georgia (sweep), as well as five other nationally ranked teams. They also earned a runner-up finish in the ITA National Indoor Championships earlier this year.
  • Torpegaard is having his best season in singles for the Buckeyes so far, going 23-0 in dual match play, and further cementing himself as the No. 1 player in the ITA in singles rankings.
  • Torpegaard, the three-time Big Ten Athlete of the Week, has lost just three sets this entire spring.
  • Hugo Di Feo is also ranked No. 8 in the updated rankings, giving the Buckeyes two of the top-10 players in the ITA.
  • Di Feo has gone 19-2 in dual match play, and 25-4 on the year in singles matches. He provided the clinching point for the Buckeyes on his Senior Day match against Wisconsin.
  • There are two more Buckeyes in the rankings as JJ Wolf checks in at No. 75 and Herkko Pollanen is No. 120.
  • Wolf is currently at 12-3 on the season, and has two wins over ranked opponents. He has played eight three-set matches so far this year, and has gone 7-1 in those matches.
  • Herkko Pollanen has gone 13-5 in dual match play, and 19-7 on the year in singles.
  • Kyle Seelig has had a successful year for the Buckeyes on courts 4-6, going 18-3 in dual match play, including 8-1 at the No. 4 spot.
  • The Scarlet and Gray still have two ranked teams in doubles. Pollanen/Torpegaard are ranked No. 13 and are 12-4 at the No. 1 spot this season.
  • Di Feo/Joyce are ranked No. 27 with a 14-1 record in dual matches.

 

Northwestern SNAPSHOT

  • The Wildcats are 18-8 (6-3 Big Ten) on the season and had their four-match win streak snapped last Sunday with a 4-3 setback to Michigan.
  • Northwestern’s most impressive win was a 4-2 victory over No. 7 TCU on Jan. 20.
  • Of Northwestern’s eight losses, six have come against top-25 ranked teams.
  • Strong Kirchheimer, the ITA Midwest Regional singles champion is the Wildcats highest ranked player at No. 39. He is 24-10 overall and 15-6 in dual match play.
  • Konrad Zieba is also ranked at No. 65. He is 16-6 in dual matches this season.
  • Like the Buckeyes, Northwestern has a pair of ranked doubles teams. Sam Shropshire and Zieba are ranked No. 68 while Kirchheimer and Dominik Stary are No. 70.

 

HISTORY VS. Northwestern

  • The Buckeyes lead the Wildcats in their all-time head-to-head meetings 49-43
  • Head coach Ty Tucker holds a 20-1 record against Northwestern and has won 14-consecutive matches against the Wildcats.
  • The last loss to Northwestern was a 5-2 setback in Chicago in 2005.
  • Last season, the Buckeyes clinched the Big Ten title with a 4-0 sweep of Northwestern in Columbus.

 

ILLINOIS SNAPSHOT

  • Illinois is 14-9 on the season and tied for second in the conference at 7-2.
  • The Illini lost all three matches on their west coast swing and then dropped a 4-3 decision at Minnesota. Since that four-match losing skid, Illinois has won four-straight, including a 4-2 victory over No. 1 Michigan last weekend.
  • Illinois is 7-2 at home with its losses coming to No. 7 North Carolina and No. 21 Kentucky.
  • Aleks Vukic has had a great season thus far and is ranked No. 5 in the country. Aron Hiltzik checks in at No. 32 in the latest singles rankings.
  • In doubles, the Illini have one ranked team of Vukic and Hiltzik at No. 36.

 

HISTORY VS. ILLINOIS

  • Ohio State trails Illinois, 46-58-1 in their all-time head-to-head meetings.
  • Head coach Ty Tucker holds a 21-12 record against the Illini.
  • The regular season and B1G Tournament Championships have been won by Ohio State or Illinois every season since 1997.
  • Last season, the Buckeyes won both meetings with the Illini. They took a 4-0 victory on Senior Day in Columbus and then won the Big Ten Tournament title with a 4-1 victory in Minnesota.