Following a loss on Friday night to Northwestern, Indiana men’s tennis sits at 11-7 on the year and 1-1 in Big Ten play. Indiana fell to 0-7 against ranked opposition after the 5-1 loss.
The Hoosiers won the doubles point but were no match for the Wildcats in singles play.
“We didn’t match their intensity,” head coach Jeremy Wurtzman said postgame. “We didn’t compete hard enough singles.”
Next up for the Hoosiers is a Sunday doubleheader. The first match of the day comes against another ranked Big Ten foe, No. 22 Illinois.
“They’ve got a lot of great players throughout their lineup,” Wurtzman said. “We’re going to have to be really tough.”
The Illini are 14-8 on the year and are off to a 2-1 start in Big Ten play with sweeps over No. 73 Penn State and Purdue. The Illini’s lone Big Ten loss came at the hands of No. 2 Ohio State.
Illinois has struggled on the road this year, posting a 2-5 record away from the Atkins Tennis Center. However, all five road losses have come to teams currently ranked inside the top 25. In fact, all eight of the Illini’s losses this season are against top 25 opposition.
“They’re a really talented team who have played a lot of tough competition,” Wurtzman said. “They are battle tested.”
The Hoosiers’ second opponent of the day is Saint Louis University. The Billikens are 14-2 and have not yet opened conference play in the Atlantic 10.
The Billikens had a match against Bellarmine on Saturday get postponed, meaning they last played on March 25, a 7-0 walloping of Baker University.
Saint Louis has only played one true road game this season, a March 11 match against the University of Southern Indiana, in which the Billikens won 4-0.
“If we play like we know that we can, we’ll have a chance to win,” Wurtzman said of the matchup against Saint Louis. “We just have to go out there and play our game.”
After this Sunday’s doubleheader, the Hoosiers continue Big Ten play on the road with a match in Lincoln against Nebraska.
Follow reporter Zach Browning (@ZachBrowning17) for updates throughout the Indiana men’s tennis season.