April 5, 2011
The No. 23-ranked University of Michigan men's tennis team (10-7 overall, 3-2 Big Ten) heads back out on the road, facing Penn State on Friday (April 8) at 3 p.m. at the Sarni Tennis Center in State College, Pa., and third-ranked Ohio State on Sunday (April 10) at noon at the Stickney Tennis Center in Columbus, Ohio.
Last Time Out
The Wolverines returned to the Varsity Tennis Center last weekend for a pair of matches. They beat Wisconsin, 5-2, on Saturday (April 2) but lost to Minnesota by the same score on Sunday (April 3) in the Battle for the Little Brown Jug.
This weekend's matches will be a contest for the best-of-seven team points. The dual will begin with three doubles matches consisting of eight-game pro sets. The team that wins two of these three matches will enter the singles competition with one of seven points. After a brief intermission, six singles matches will be played. Each singles match will be the best of three tie-break sets and worth one point towards the team competition. The overall dual match will be decided when one team secures four total points. Matches in progress when the dual match is clinched will be played to completion.
Here is Michigan's projected lineup, based on the last match vs. Minnesota:
No. 1 -- #21 Evan King (22-7 overall, 15-2 in duals)
No. 2 -- #57 Jason Jung (20-10 overall, 12-5 in duals)
No. 3 -- Shaun Bernstein (18-14 overall, 9-8 in duals)
No. 4 -- Barrett Franks (14-15 overall, 9-8 in duals)
No. 5 -- Justin Rossi (14-15 overall, 7-9 in duals)
No. 6 -- Chris Cha (12-12 overall, 6-6 in duals)
No. 1 -- #19 Jason Jung/Evan King (12-8 overall, 8-5 in duals)
No. 2 -- Chris Madden/Barrett Franks (2-6 overall, 2-6 in duals)
No. 3 -- Shaun Bernstein/Chris Cha (10-11 overall, 4-6 in duals)
Michigan went with the same lineup against Wisconsin and Minnesota last weekend.
Michigan has been a better team in singles than in doubles. The Wolverines are a combined 110-91 in singles play (.547) while going 40-46 (.465) in doubles.
Shaun Bernstein has won four of his first five matches in Big Ten play, with his only loss coming on March 27 at Indiana. He had lost four in a row prior to conference play starting on March 20 at Michigan State.
Jason Jung is two singles wins away from having 80 career wins in both singles and doubles.
With his win last Sunday at No. 1 over Rok Bonin (Minnesota), Evan King has surpassed his total number of wins from last season as a freshman (21) with five matches (plus postseason) remaining this season.
Among the Best In Attendance
Currently, Michigan ranks fourth nationally in total attendance (2,081 fans for six home matches), second in average attendance (416 fans per home match) and has the second-highest attended match in the nation (687 - Jan. 22 vs. Texas).
Michigan will play matches at home on back-to-back days for the first time this season this weekend. The Wolverines are 3-3 at home this season.
Strength at the Top
This season, Michigan is a combined 27-7 at the top two spots of the singles lineup (Evan King, Jason Jung) and 32-35 at the other four spots (Shaun Bernstein, Justin Rossi, Chris Cha, Barrett Franks, and Chris Madden).
Evan King has had a spectacular sophomore season, going 15-2 atop the lineup in singles. His 12-match win streak ended last Saturday with a loss to No. 70 Marek Michalicka (Wisconsin), losing 6-7 (3), 7-6 (4), 1-0 (10-8). With the match already clinched, King and Michalicka were the last two men on the court at No. 1. King led 8-3 in a supertiebreaker, but Michalicka stonewalled King to win the next seven points to take the match.
King is 22-7 (.758) in singles this season, with a 15-2 mark in dual matches and a 9-4 mark against ranked opponents.
King was recently profiled in the Michigan Daily with a full-length feature story. [ The Pro You Don't Know: Evan King, by Matt Rudnitsky ]
Struggles in Doubles
Michigan is 6-11 in winning the doubles point this season, having won it in five of its last eight matches. Despite its struggles, the Wolverines are 5-1 when they win the point and 5-6 when they lose the point.
In doubles, the Wolverines hold a 10-7 record at No.1 and 10-22 combined record at the No. 2 and 3 spots.
Into the Fire
Michigan's four-member freshman class is getting a trial by fire this season, each playing important roles in the lineup. Shaun Bernstein, Barrett Franks and Justin Rossi have each found a home in Michigan's singles lineup, and each holds winning singles records. Together, the three have combined to go 46-44. Alex Buzzi has yet to play singles in a dual match, but including his record from tournaments, the freshman class is 55-51.
Jason Sees Double
With two doubles wins last weekend against Wisconsin and Minnesota, senior Jason Jung moved into sole possession of fourth place all-time at Michigan for career doubles wins. He currently has 85, just five wins behind the three men tied for first: Brian Hung (2004-07), Matko Maravic (2005-08) and Mike Sroczynski (2007-10).
Career Doubles Wins at Michigan
T1. Brian Hung (2004-07) 90 Matko Maravic (2005-08) Mike Sroczynski (2007-10) 4. Jason Jung (2008-Present) 85 T5. Eric Friedler (1973-76) 84 George Navas (2007-10) 7. Andrew Mazlin (2006-09) 83
Ian Sheets of the Michigan Daily spoke to Jung after this weekend's slate of matches. [ Story ]
Scouting The Competition
Penn State -- The Nittany Lions (10-11, 0-4 Big Ten) are struggling since reaching Big Ten play, losing their first four matches to Ohio State, Illinois, Iowa, and most recently Northwestern. Penn State is not ranked, and does not have any ranked singles players or doubles teams. The Nittany Lions are led by freshman Russell Bader, who has a team-leading 19 singles wins. Eddie Bourchier, Jason Lee and Bryan Welnetz each are tied for second with 17 wins apiece.
The Wolverines are 18-5 all-time against Penn State and have won five straight against the Nittany Lions. Michigan won, 4-3, last season in State College (April 9, 2010).
Ohio State -- The Buckeyes (19-2, 4-0 Big Ten) are ranked No. 3 and have won five straight Big Ten regular-season and Big Ten Tournament titles as well as 70 straight Big Ten dual matches. The Buckeyes have seven ranked singles players, including two players in the top 15 in Blaz Rola (No. 3) and Chase Buchanan (No. 14), and two ranked doubles teams.
Michigan holds a 72-28-2 record all-time against Ohio State, but the Buckeyes have won the last 15 meetings between the two schools, including twice last season (regular season and in the second round of the NCAA Championships in Columbus). The Wolverines have not beaten Ohio State since April 8, 2001 (a 4-3 win in Ann Arbor). Sunday's match marks the 103rd meeting between the two rival schools.
No. 3 - Blaz Rola (Ohio State)
No. 14 - Chase Buchanan (Ohio State)
No. 41 - Matt Allare (Ohio State)
No. 53 - Devin McCarthy (Ohio State)
No. 66 - Peter Kobelt (Ohio State)
No. 98 - Balazs Novak (Ohio State)
No. 102 - Nelson Vick (Ohio State)
No. 9 - Chase Buchanan/Blaz Rola (Ohio State)
No. 13 - Matt Allare/Peter Kobelt (Ohio State)
Penn State does not have any ranked singles players or ranked doubles teams.
U-M in the National Rankings
Michigan is ranked at No. 23 in the most-recent ITA poll, released on April 5, down one spot from last week.
The Wolverines have already faced eight top-25 teams (scoring wins in five of those matchups), and faces one of the best teams in the country this Sunday in Ohio State:
|No. 25 Virginia Tech (1/29)||No. 5 Texas (1/22)|
|No. 22 Wake Forest (2/5)||No. 14 Duke (1/29)|
|No. 23 Washington (2/11)||No. 24 Minnesota (4/3)|
|No. 23 Notre Dame (2/19)|
|No. 6 Duke (2/26)|
Michigan at the Varsity Tennis Center
The Wolverines have been tough to beat at the Varsity Tennis Center since the facility opened in 1997. Michigan is 57-18 (.760) since the 2005 season and is 117-38 (.754) overall at the complex.
Senior Jason Jung was voted as team captain for the 2010-11 season by his teammates. Jung enjoyed a fantastic season last year as a junior, including being named an All-Big Ten selection and qualifying for the NCAA Championships in both singles and doubles (with Evan King). Off the court, Jung was recognized as the national and Midwest regional winner of the ITA Arthur Ashe Jr. Award for Leadership and Sportsmanship and was the Big Ten Conference's male nominee for the NCAA Sportsmanship Award.
For his career, Jung owns a 78-62 record in singles and an 85-55 record in doubles, playing atop the lineup for most of his career. His 24 doubles wins last season were tied for seventh most all-time at Michigan, and he is currently tied for sixth all-time in school history in career doubles wins.
Michigan inked two top prep players -- Alex Petrone (Staten Island, N.Y./Laurel Springs Prep) and Eli Brown (Toronto, Ontario/City Academy) -- to National Letters of Intent during the early signing period this fall. Petrone is rated as a blue-chip recruit and No. 15 nationally by the service www.tennisrecruiting.net., while Brown won the Cuba ITF singles title and Dominican Republic ITF doubles title last year as a junior.
Leader of the Wolverines
Bruce Berque is in his seventh season as the head coach of the University of Michigan men's tennis team. He has taken the Wolverines to five straight NCAA Championships appearances, including the Sweet 16 in 2008. Berque owns a career dual-meet record of 106-69, including a 45-20 mark in Big Ten play. In addition, the Wolverines have finished in the top half of the Big Ten in each of Berque's first five years at the helm, finishing no lower than fourth place.
He is assisted by associate head coach Sean Maymi, who is in his fifth season, and volunteer assistant Scott Oudsema, who is in his second.
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Yearbook & Record Book
For the second year in a row, the University of Michigan athletics department will no longer print media guides. U-M fans and media can still obtain all the information they're used to, only now it's available online. If you're looking for in-depth historical information, statistics, records, archives, etc., the Record Book is what you'll need and it was just added to MGoBlue.com. For more of a general overview of a team, the staff and student-athletes, check out the Yearbook.
Saturday, April 16 -- vs. Illinois (Varsity Tennis Center), Noon
Sunday, April 17 -- vs. Iowa - Senior Day (Varsity Tennis Center), Noon
Contact: Brad Rudner (734) 763-4423