No. 3 Ohio State Seeks Seventh-Consecutive Big Ten Tournament Title
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The reigning seven-time Big Ten regular-season champion and No. 3 Ohio State men’s tennis team (29-2, 11-0 Big Ten) will attempt to earn its seventh-consecutive Big Ten tournament championship as it begins postseason play Friday in Evanston, Ill., at the Vandy Christie Tennis Center.
Earning the No. 1 seed, the Buckeyes received a first-round bye and will play the winner between No. 8 Wisconsin and No. 9 Nebraska at 10:30 a.m. ET Friday.
The Big Ten Network will broadcast the tournament final on tape delay at 6 p.m. ET May 10.
Buckeyes in the Big Ten Tournament
Under 13th-year head coach Ty Tucker, the Scarlet and Gray have won seven Big Ten tournament titles out of 12 attempts, including the previous six (2001, '06, '07, '08, '09, '10, ‘11).
Previous Six Tournament Finals
In 2011, Ohio State (34-3) def. Minnesota, 4-0, in Madison, Wis.
In 2010, Ohio State (35-2) def. Illinois, 4-1, in Bloomington, Ind.
In 2009, Ohio State (36-2) def. Illinois, 4-3, in Ann Arbor, Mich.
In 2008, Ohio State (35-2) def. Illinois, 4-3, in Iowa City, Iowa
In 2007, Ohio State (30-2) def. Illinois, 4-1, in West Lafayette, Ind.
In 2006, Ohio State (28-2) def. Illinois, 4-2, in Minneapolis, Minn.
· Ohio State has won 90 consecutive Big Ten matches (regular season and Big Ten tournament) and 142 of its previous 147 contests.
· Ohio State has won 146 consecutive home matches in Columbus (19-0 in 2012).
· As the No. 3 team nationally, Ohio State is 78-3.
· The Buckeyes have won 29 doubles points out of 31 this season.
· The Buckeyes have been victorious in 46 of their previous 49 matches.
· Since 2001, Ohio State is 274-38 when ranked in the ITA Top 25. That percentage improves to 227-15 since 2005-06.
· The Buckeyes have been ranked in the ITA Top 10 for 193 consecutive matches (beginning March 7, 2006).
· The Scarlet and Gray are 11-2 vs. teams ranked in the ITA Top 25 and 20-2 vs. teams in the Top 75.
· Blaz Rola leads the team with 29 singles wins, while Chase Buchanan leads with 36 doubles wins.
A Look Back
Before honoring Chase Buchanan and Steven Williams on senior day, the third-ranked Buckeyes captured their seventh-consecutive outright Big Ten regular-season title with a 6-1 victory over No. 21 Michigan April 22 at the outdoor Varsity Tennis Courts.
Ohio State won all three doubles matches, while also claiming five-of-six singles contests en route to the conference victory.
Ohio State vs. Nebraska
The Buckeyes defeated Nebraska (10-14; 3-8 Big Ten) 6-1 March 30 in Columbus in just the second meeting between the two programs. The win extended Ohio State’s home win streak to 141 matches after Nelson Vick secured the victory by allowing just one point in a 6-1, 6-0 triumph at No. 6 singles over Husker Eric Sock.
Ohio State vs. Wisconsin
The Buckeyes improved to 41-32 all-time vs. the Badgers (12-11; 4-7 Big Ten) after a 7-0 shutout April 6 in Madison. Devin McCarthy’s 6-1, 6-4 victory over Quinton Vega at No. 4 singles lifted Ohio State to its 24th win of the season.
Big Ten Best
Ohio State has won 90 consecutive Big Ten Conference matches after defeating Michigan 6-1 April 22 in Columbus. For the seventh-consecutive season, the Buckeyes concluded the regular season with an undefeated record in league play (11-0) to win their ninth regular-season crown in program history.
The Scarlet and Gray finished the regular season 61-5 in singles and 30-3 in doubles in 2012 conference matches. Four Buckeyes had perfect slates in singles action in Chase Buchanan (10-0), Devin McCarthy (10-0) Hunter Callahan (4-0) and Nelson Vick (3-0). Connor Smith and Peter Kobelt each tallied a 9-1 mark in the Big Ten, while Ille Van Engelen went 8-1 and Blaz Rola was 8-2.
Kobelt and Smith went 9-0 in Big Ten doubles competition, while McCarthy and Van Engelen finished 9-2. Buchanan and Rola wrapped up their conference doubles ledger with a 7-1 mark.
Overall in Big Ten doubles play, Smith (11-0) and Kobelt (10-0) finished undefeated. Rola and Buchanan each went 9-1, while Van Engelen and McCarthy each concluded conference doubles action with a 9-2 record.
Dominant in Columbus
The Buckeyes have won a school-record 146 consecutive home matches, including a 19-0 record this season. The streak dates back to the 2002-03 season. So far this season, Ohio State is 11-0 vs. ITA Top 75 teams (No. 44 Cornell, No. 16 Mississippi State, No. 29 Indiana, No. 12 Pepperdine, No. 7 Kentucky, No. 17 North Carolina, No. 17 Texas A&M, No. 70 Nebraska, No. 23 Illinois, No. 46 Northwestern and No. 21 Michigan). In the Big Ten, no other team in any sport has won as many consecutive contests at home than the Buckeyes.
Five at 25
Ohio State currently boasts five student-athletes with at least 25 singles wins apiece. Blaz Rola leads the team with 29 (29-5), while Connor Smith is not too far behind with 27 victories to his credit (27-6). Devin McCarthy finished the regular season with 26 singles wins (26-6), while Chase Buchanan and Ille Van Engelen each have 25 wins to just six losses.
The 2012 Senior Class
Senior co-captains Chase Buchanan and Steven Williams were honored after the Michigan match April 22 on Senior Day at the outdoor Varsity Tennis Courts. The 2012 senior class has won four Big Ten regular-season titles and three Big Ten tournament titles since joining the team in 2008-09.
The senior duo has never lost a home contest in its four years at Ohio State (74-0) and has won the third most matches of any class in program history. The 2012 senior class has amassed a 134-9 record, advanced to the NCAA tournament final (2009), along with semifinal (2011) and quarterfinal (2010) appearances and has a 53-0 Big Ten record.
Let's Go Streaking
Ohio State has won 10 consecutive matches since dropping a 4-3 decision at No. 4 Georgia March 21. Ohio State has 11 victories against Top 25 opponents and 20 vs. teams in the Top 75. The Buckeyes also have won 146 consecutive home matches after a 6-1 victory over No. 21 Michigan April 22. The win vs. the Wolverines was the Scarlet and Gray’s 90th-consecutive Big Ten victory.
In the Hall
Head coach Ty Tucker will officially be inducted into the Zanesville City Schools Hall of Fame May 12 at Zanesville High School. A 1988 graduate of ZHS, Tucker was a high school All-American, nine-time National Junior Champion and remains the only freshman at ZHS to win an Ohio High School State Championship title.
Head coach Ty Tucker, who replaced John Daly as coach prior to the 1999-2000 season, has an overall record of 355-56 (.864) as the Buckeye mentor, including a 152-17 mark vs. Big Ten competition. He has posted 12 consecutive seasons with at least 20 wins and with one win at the Big Ten tournament will reach his sixth-consecutive campaign with 30 or more victories.
Success in Duals
Ohio State was dominant throughout the 2012 dual schedule as it was a combined 141-25. Connor Smith led the squad with 23 dual victories. Devin McCarthy (22), Ille Van Engelen (21) and Blaz Rola (21) were the three other Buckeyes to record at least 20 dual victories.
In doubles, the Scarlet and Gray were a combined 73-10. Peter Kobelt led the way with 26 doubles victories. His partner for most of the year, Smith, had 25. Buchanan, Van Engelen and Rola each collected 22 dual wins, while McCarthy had 21.
In the Rankings
Ohio State enters postseason play ranked third in the latest edition of the ITA Campbell’s College Tennis standings released Tuesday. So far this season, the Buckeyes have faced six Top 10 teams, including those ranked Nos. 1, 2 and 4 and have posted a 4-2 record vs. those programs.
No. 6 Blaz Rola
No. 11 Chase Buchanan
No. 67 Peter Kobelt
No. 85 Devin McCarthy
No. 105 Connor Smith
No. 107 Nelson Vick
No. 115 Ille Van Engelen
No. 1 Rola/Buchanan
No. 31 McCarthy/Van Engelen
No. 46 Buchanan/Kobelt
No. 80 Smith/Rola
Blaz Rola currently leads the Buckeyes in singles wins with 29 between courts one and two. The sophomore, who is currently ranked sixth nationally, is 9-2 at No. 1 singles and 12-1 at No. 2. Rola has won 15 of his previous 17 singles matches and has an impressive 12-4 record vs. ranked competition. Rola, when teamed with partner Chase Buchanan, are 28-3 as a tandem, having won 13 of their last 14 matches. They form the top-ranked pair in the country and own a 13-1 record against ranked opponents. For the season, Rola has accumulated 35 doubles victories with four different partners, while Buchanan leads the team with 36 doubles wins.
The Buckeyes have shut out their opponents 14 times this season, with seven coming against Big Ten competition. The Scarlet and Gray have blanked Butler, Xavier, Indiana (non-conference match), Toledo, Michigan State, Texas, Kentucky, Penn State, UNOH, Iowa, Youngstown State, Wisconsin, Illinois and Purdue.
Big Ten Awards
Three Buckeyes were awarded a total of 13 Big Ten Athlete of the Week honors during the 2011-12 season. Including the fall campaign, Chase Buchanan and Blaz Rola collected six accolades each, while Ille Van Engelen was a recipient in January.
No Double Trouble
The Buckeyes have won 29 of 31 doubles points this campaign and are 27-2 on the season when they claim the first point. The Scarlet and Gray are 2-0 in 2012 when dropping the doubles point.
In addition to Ohio State’s official athletics web site, OhioStateBuckeyes.com, fans can log on to the men’s tennis team’s official Twitter account (@OhioState_MTEN) for the latest news and notes.
### OhioStateBuckeyes.com ###