Gophers Open Big Ten Play Saturday Against Rival Wisconsin
The Minnesota men's tennis team will look to extend its two-game winning streak this Saturday when it hosts Border Battle rival and Big Ten foe Wisconsin at noon at the Baseline Tennis Center. Saturday's contest against the Badgers will be first conference match of the season for the 35th-ranked Gophers.
Prior to having an off week last week, Minnesota defeated Arizona and DePaul at home to get back to .500 after a 1-3 start to the season. Through six matches, junior Rok Bonin has the team's best singles record at 4-1. Senior Phillip Arndt is 3-3, having playing all his matches at the top position and freshman Leandro Toledo is 3-2 at No. 2.
In doubles, the team is led by Bonin and senior Julian Dehn, who are ranked 32nd in the nation with a 5-0 record in the spring. The duo has a 24-3 overall record over the past two years including a 15-1 mark in dual-match play.
Against Wisconsin, the Gophers have a 57-47 all-time record after winning both times the two teams met last year. The visiting team has won five of the past six regular-season meetings. The teams have exchanged playoff wins against each other over the past two years. Last season, Minnesota eliminated the host Badgers at the Big Ten Tournament.
At the Big Ten Indoor Tournament in late October, Gopher players went 2-1 in singles and 0-2 in doubles against Wisconsin opponents.
The Badgers began the season with wins against Butler and Western Illinois before dropping three straight road matches against Notre Dame, Clemson, and Georgia Tech. Like the Gophers, Wisconsin moved to 3-3 in its last match with a victory. In that match, the Badgers beat Marquette 5-2. Minnesota began its season with a 7-0 sweep of the Golden Eagles.
Thus far in the 2012 season, both the Gophers and Wisconsin is 3-0 at home and 0-3 on the road.
After this weekend, Minnesota will play its next four matches on the road, starting with a contest against No. 37 Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va. next Saturday. The Gophers will return home on March 23 when they take on 56th-ranked Michigan State in their second Big Ten match.