April 24, 2013
Friday, April 26 -- vs. Iowa or Ohio State (Bloomington, Ind.), 10 a.m.
Saturday, April 27 -- Big Ten Tournament semifinals (Bloomington, Ind.), 10 a.m.
Sunday, April 28 -- Big Ten Tournament final (Bloomington, Ind.), Noon
The sixth-ranked University of Michigan women's tennis team (19-4) seeks its second overall and first Big Ten Tournament title since 1997 this weekend (April 26-28) in Bloomington, Ind. U-M secured the No. 1 seed for the fourth consecutive year and will first square off against the winner of No. 8 seed Iowa and No. 9 seed Ohio State on Friday (April 26) at 10 a.m. The Big Ten Tournament finale will air on the Big Ten Network on May 6.
This weekend's dual 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. In the postseason, matches in progress when the doubles point and dual match are clinched will be abandoned.
With a pair of wins last weekend over Penn State at home and at Ohio State, No. 6 Michigan won its fourth straight Big Ten championship after going 10-1 in the conference. Its streak of four in a row is the second longest in Big Ten history, behind Northwestern's 11 (1999-2009) and Indiana's nine (1987-95).
With Michigan winning its fourth consecutive Big Ten title over the weekend, senior Mimi Nguyen became the first Wolverine in school history to win four conference championships in a career.
Michigan enters the Big Ten Tournament as the No. 1 seed for the fourth consecutive season. U-M, which tied for first in the Big Ten with Nebraska at 10-1, held the tiebreaker over the Huskers for the top seed. The Wolverines shared the Big Ten championship with Nebraska, which U-M defeated, 5-2, on April 13.
Michigan is in search of its second Big Ten Tournament title, with its lone tourney championship coming in 1997.
U-M has appeared in the championship match of the Big Ten Tournament in each of the last eight years.
U-M's quarterfinal opponent will be either Ohio State or Iowa. U-M defeated Ohio State, 7-0, this past Sunday (April 21) and knocked off Iowa, 6-1, on April 14.
The Wolverines have won 14 of their last 15 matches, including the last six. Michigan's six-match winning streak is the second longest of the campaign, as U-M reeled off eight straight from Feb. 24-March 30.
With postseason play beginning this weekend, matches in progress when the dual match is clinched will be abandoned. Also, matches in progress when the doubles point is clinched will also be abandoned.
With one more win, U-M will have its fourth consecutive 20-win season. U-M has reached the 20-win plateau four times (1997, 2010, 2011, 2012) in school history. Three of Michigan's 20-win seasons have happened under sixth-year head coach Ronni Bernstein.
U-M has never lost more than one Big Ten regular-season match in each of head coach Ronni Bernstein's six seasons in Ann Arbor. She is now 58-4 in conference matches.
Since changing up the doubles lineup on April 14 against Iowa, Michigan has won all three doubles points and only lost one doubles match during that time. U-M's No. 1 duo of Emina Bektas and Brooke Bolender stayed the same, but Mimi Nguyen and Sarah Lee moved to the No. 2 spot and Ronit Yurovsky and Kristen Dodge were paired up at No. 3.
U-M moved up to No. 6 in this week's ITA rankings after a 2-0 weekend that included a 5-2 win over No. 12 Nebraska on April 13 and a 6-1 victory over Iowa on April 14. It is the highest U-M has been ranked since coming in at No. 5 on March 22, 2011. The Wolverines have been in the top 10 ever since knocking off No. 2 Duke on March 1.
Sophomore Emina Bektas clinched her team-leading fifth match of the season on Sunday (April 14) with a 7-5, 7-5 win over Iowa's Ruth Seaborne at No. 1. Freshmen Amy Zhu and Ronit Yurovsky have each clinched three matches, with sophomore Sarah Lee and junior Brooke Bolender deciding two each and senior Mimi Nguyen clinching one.
Michigan now features five players that have at least 20 wins on the season in Ronit Yurovsky (28), Sarah Lee (25), Emina Bektas (23), Brooke Bolender (23) and Amy Zhu (21). It is the fourth straight season that U-M has had at least five 20-win players.
Michigan, which knocked off No. 12 Nebraska (5-2) on April 13, is 9-3 this season against ranked opponents. U-M has won six in a row over top-25 competition.
The Maize and Blue sports a 15-0 record this season when winning the doubles point after defeating Penn State (April 19) and Ohio State (April 21). U-M is 3-4 when failing to secure the first point of the match, most recently rallying to beat No. 12 Nebraska on April 13. Michigan did not compete in doubles action at San Diego (March 8) due to impending rain.
With a 5-2 win at Notre Dame on March 27, Michigan wrapped up the non-conference portion of the regular season with a 9-3 mark.
The Wolverines won all six singles matches against Ohio State (April 19), the just the fourth time this season U-M has swept all six matches. U-M turned the feat against Brown in the season opener (Jan. 26), against Michigan State (Feb. 27) and versus Purdue (March 30).
U-M finished the regular season with a 9-2 record at the Varsity Tennis Center.
Michigan features three ranked singles players in sophomore Emina Bektas (No. 25), freshman Ronit Yurovsky (No. 48) and sophomore Sarah Lee (No. 98). On the doubles side, Bektas and junior Brooke Bolender are the No. 7 pair in the country, with Yurovsky and Lee ranking No. 63.
Michigan has already had three players take home Big Ten Tennis Athlete of the Week honors this season in sophomore Sarah Lee, freshman Ronit Yurovsky and sophomore Emina Bektas. Yurovsky and Bektas have each won the award twice.
Brooke Bolender will serve as Michigan's team captain this season. It is her first season as captain and the first time since the 2009-10 season that U-M will be captained by a junior.
Senior Mimi Nguyen is the team's lone senior this season, marking the second straight season that Michigan has featured just one senior.
Since taking over the Wolverines in 2007-08, U-M is 59-6 at the Varsity Tennis Center under head coach Ronni Bernstein. In her sixth season at Michigan, Bernstein is 123-35 as the leader of the Wolverines.
The Wolverines are coming off their third straight Big Ten championship and NCAA Sweet 16 appearance in 2012. U-M went 21-8 last season, finishing with a No. 14 ranking. It was also U-M's third consecutive 20-win season. Three of Michigan's five 20-win seasons have occurred under head coach Ronni Bernstein.
Fri-Sun., May 10-12 -- NCAA First and Second Rounds (Site TBA)