The No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes have one of their toughest matches on this weekend’s slate, as the No. 6 Illinois Fighting Illini are coming to town.
This match will take place on Saturday at Noon, with only one team coming out of it remaining undefeated in the Big Ten.
The Buckeyes will also host a match against the Northwestern Wildcats.
This match will take place the following day at Noon.
Depending on the weather each day, the Buckeyes may get their first chance of the season to play outside. Otherwise, it will be back to the familiar confines of the OSU Varsity Tennis Center.
BUCKEYES IN A NUTSHELL
The Ohio State Buckeyes are currently on a 10-match win streak. This includes wins over six nationally ranked teams, and two top-15 teams. During this 10-match run, they hold a point record of 51-11.
The Scarlet and Gray are 22-2 on the season, and 13-0 at home.
Ohio State and Illinois are tied atop the Big Ten standings at 7-0 while Michigan and Minnesota are both 5-2.
The Buckeyes are also 9-2 away from home. Their two losses are a road match at No. 20 Georgia, and a neutral site match at No. 4 UCLA.
The Buckeyes have an impressive resume, with wins against three top-10 teams, five other top-20 teams, and 12 total ranked opponents.
Ohio State sits at No. 3 this week in the latest Oracle ITA Rankings.
The Buckeyes are 89-25 in singles matches and 41-10 in doubles matches. They have a season point total of 109-29.
The Scarlet and Gray are 20-4 on the season on the doubles point, and 20-0 on the season when winning the doubles point.
The Buckeyes possess five ranked singles players, and two ranked doubles pairs.
Mikael Torpegaard is the No. 4 player in the country. He recently earned his third Big Ten Athlete of the Week award this season, and 10th of his career.
Torpegaard is 21-5 on the season and 12-3 at the No. 1 singles spot.
JJ Wolf is ranked No. 40 and Kyle Seelig is ranked No. 68
Seelig is 13-6 in dual matches and has 23 overall singles victories.
Wolf is 14-4 on the year between court 1 and 2 positions. Wolf has played in nine three-set matches this year and has won each of his last seven three-setters.
Martin Joyce is continuing his success, shooting up in the rankings to No. 90. He is currently on a win-streak of 10 matches, only dropping two sets since his last loss on February 18.
John McNally is No. 98 in the rankings. McNally has won 10 of his last 11 matches since February 9.
Torpegaard is a part of two ranked doubles teams. With Joyce, they are a top-25 team ranked No. 25. With McNally, the pair is ranked No. 70, and on a seven-match win streak.
The Illinois Fighting Illini are currently the No. 6 team in the nation.
The Illini are 16-5 on the season, and also 7-0 in Big Ten play.
Illinois’s losses have come from playing away from home in four of five instances. Their losses are to North Carolina, Kentucky, Wake Forest, UCLA, and Stanford, four of the five of which are top-10 programs. The exception is Kentucky, who Ohio State beat last Wednesday 4-2.
The Illini are 0-4 against top-10 teams, but 7-0 against top-25 teams, with their best win coming against No. 11 Michigan.
Illinois has two ranked players: No. 15 Aleks Vukic and No. 66 Alex Brown.
Vukic is 9-4 at the No. 1 spot. He has over 100 singles wins during his career, and has won Big Ten Athlete of the Week this season.
Alex Brown is 12-6 in dual match play. As a freshman, he has earned three Big Ten Athlete of the Week awards.
Illinois has one ranked doubles team: No. 85 Vukic and Aron Hiltzik.
HISTORY VS. ILLINOIS
The Buckeyes trail Illinois 47-53-1 in the all-time record.
Ty Tucker is 22-12 against the Illini.
The regular season and B1G Tournament Championships have been won by Ohio State or Illinois every season since 1997.
Last year, Ohio State beat Illinois 4-3 after being down 3-0 to complete a perfect 11-0 Big Ten season.
The Northwestern Wildcats are currently 9-12 on the season, and 4-2 in the Big Ten.
The Wildcats have faced four ranked teams on the season, going 0-4 and picking up three points total in the process.
Northwestern is 48-45 in singles matches, and 23-28 in doubles matches.
Northwestern’s top singles player is Dominik Stary, who is 6-4 at the No. 1 spot for the Fighting Illini. Stary defeated both Riley Reist and Hunter Tubert earlier this season.
HISTORY VS. NORTHWESTERN
The Buckeyes lead the Wildcats in head-to-head 49-43.
Ty Tucker has only lost once to Northwestern, and has won 15 straight, with a current record with 21-1.
The last time Northwestern won was in 2005 in Chicago, where the Wildcats pulled out the victory 5-2.
Last year, the Scarlet and Gray beat Northwestern 6-1 to win the outright Big Ten title, and become the seventh program in B1G history to win 12 or more straight titles.