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Sunday, April 14
The Indiana Daily Student

sports tennis

Indiana men’s tennis to close out regular season at Penn State and Ohio State

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Following an 0-2 home stand a weekend ago, Indiana men’s tennis is on the road to close out its regular season. At noon on April 22, the Hoosiers head to University Park, Pennsylvania, to take on Penn State. The next day the Hoosiers will take on No. 2 Ohio State in Columbus, Ohio.  

The Hoosiers, losers of their last four matches and six of their last seven, have struggled after beginning the season strong. The team that once stood at 9-2 is now 12-12 and 1-6 in the Big Ten. Indiana has struggled all season away from the IU Tennis Center, posting a 1-7 road record. 

“We’re played a lot of tough competition,” head coach Jeremy Wurtzman said following Sunday’s loss to Michigan State. “The Big Ten is a talented conference from top to bottom.” 

Indiana’s first opponent of the weekend is Penn State. The Nittany Lions are 13-11 but have yet to win a conference game, as they’re 0-7. Penn State has lost eight matches in a row. The last win for the Nittany Lions — a 4-3 win in Fort Meyers, Florida, against Florida Gulf Coast University — came on March 11. 

Penn State has been solid at home this year, going 10-4 at the Sarni Tennis Center including a 4-3 win against No. 52 Princeton University. Princeton and Cornell University are the only two non-conference common opponents for Indiana and Penn State. The Hoosiers lost to the Tigers in New Jersey and both teams have lost to Cornell this season. 

“We have to have a good week in practice and head into next weekend with our heads held high,” Wurtzman said. “We know if we play at our best, we can beat a lot of really good teams.” 

Ohio State is on tap for Indiana’s second match of the weekend. The Buckeyes are 7-0 in the Big Ten and 24-2 overall. Ohio States two losses have come at a neutral site against No. 1 Texas and on the road against No. 6 South Carolina. The Buckeyes are a perfect 15-0 at the Ty Tucker Tennis Center as they look for their 17th consecutive Big Ten title. 

Ohio State has 19 wins over ranked opponents this year. Among those 19 are a home win against Texas, a home and road win against No. 7 Michigan and neutral site and road wins over No. 8 Virginia. 

“(Ohio State) will be the most talented team we play this season,” Wurtzman said. “They’re experienced too. They don’t really have any flaws.” 

All three of the Buckeyes doubles tandems are ranked inside the top-35, according to the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.  

There are also five Buckeyes ranked inside the top-50 in singles. Redshirt senior James Trotter has played matches at No. 2, No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5 singles and is a perfect 21-0 this season. He’s the only power five conference player without a loss in singles play among those who have played 10 or more matches.  

“Success isn’t always determined whether we win or lose a match,” Wurtzman said. “I just want to see us go out and compete at our best.” 

After this weekend wraps up, the Hoosiers will get ready for postseason play back at home. Indiana hosts the Big Ten Tournament April 27-30 at the IU Tennis Center.  

Follow reporter Zach Browning (@ZachBrowning17) for updates throughout the Indiana men’s tennis season. 
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