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April 24, 2014

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COLUMBUS, Ohio Peter Kobelt and Herkko Pollanen, members of the No. 2 Ohio state men’s tennis team, were named First Team All-Big Ten at the annual Big Ten Tournament banquet Thursday night in East Lansing, Mich. Hunter Callahan, Kevin Metka and Ralf Steinbach earned second-team laurels. Buckeye head coach Ty Tucker was recognized as Big Ten Coach of the Year for the ninth-consecutive season and 10th overall. 

Ohio State earned a first-round bye as the No. 1 seed and will play No. 8 seed Michigan State at 10 a.m. Friday at the MSU Outdoor Courts in East Lansing, Mich. The Buckeyes finished the regular season with a 27-3 overall record, including a perfect 11-0 mark in conference play. The six individual honors were the most by any team in the conference this year.

The lone senior on the Scarlet and Gray squad from New Albany, Ohio, Kobelt claims his third first team All-Big Ten honor of his career and was a unanimous selection. The No. 1 singles player, Kobelt has collected a 19-4 dual record, collecting 12 victories vs. nationally-ranked opponents. He claimed four Big Ten weekly conference laurels to lead the league this spring, while boasting eight victories vs. Big Ten opponents.

Pollanen, a native of Helsinki, Finland, collects his first career first team honor in his first year as a Buckeye. Pollanen has gone 8-6 as the Buckeyes’ No. 2 singles player, while posting a 7-3 mark in league action. He has claimed two wins over nationally-ranked opponents, including a three-set victory over ninth-ranked Jared Hiltzik over Illinois March 30.

A redshirt junior from Lower Gwynedd, Pa., Callahan earns his first career Big Ten honor after claiming nine victories in conference play this year to tie for the team high. He is 21-2 at No. 6 singles, while leading the Buckeyes in overall wins with season-best 29 victories heading into the tournament.  He currently is on an eight-match win streak.

Metka also picks up his first career conference laurel, playing full-time in the singles lineup for the Scarlet and Gray this season. The native of Worthington, Ohio, Metka has spent time between No. 4 and No. 5 singles, tallying 12-4 and 9-0 marks, respectively. Overall, Metka has claimed a season-best 26 overall wins this year.

Finally, Steinbach rounds out the first-time OSU honorees with his first-career Big Ten award, starting in the singles lineup for the first time in his OSU career. The native of Halle, Germany, Steinbach has collected nine victories in conference play, going 23-4 in dual play. Steinbach has tallied an 8-2 mark at No. 4 singles and a 9-2 ledger at No. 5 singles and has won eight of his last nine matches this year.

In doubles, Kobelt and Metka have paired up at No. 1 doubles and the tandem has compiled a 27-6 overall record, including a 4-1 mark in league play. Kobelt and Steinbach have combined for a 3-0 ledger in league action with a 5-1 mark at No. 1 doubles.

In his 15th season as head coach of the Buckeyes, Tucker has led the squad to eight Big Ten tournament titles, including his first in 2001 and six consecutive from 2006-11. In all, Tucker has coached Ohio State to a 142-11 (.928) Big Ten record, while holding a 93-0 conference regular-season match record since the start of the 2006 campaign.

In addition to his first-team honors, Callahan was Ohio State’s representative as the Sportsmanship Award recipient.

MEN’S TENNIS ALL-BIG TEN TEAMS

First-Team All-Big Ten
FARRIS GOSEA, Illinois
Jared Hiltzik, Illinois
Tim Kopinski, Illinois
Alex Petrone, Michigan
Drew Lied, Michigan State
LEANDRO TOLEDO, Minnesota
Dusty Boyer, Nebraska
Sam Shropshire, Northwestern
Raleigh Smith, Northwestern
Peter Kobelt, Ohio State
Herkko Pollanen, Ohio State
LEONARD STAKHOVSKY, Penn State

Second-Team All-Big Ten*
Sam Monette, Indiana
Jonas Dierckx, Iowa
John Patrick Mullane, Michigan State
Hunter Callahan, Ohio State
Kevin Metka, Ohio State
Ralf Steinbach, Ohio State
Russell Bader, Penn State
Mark Kovacs, Purdue
Ricky Medinilla, Purdue

Unanimous selections in CAPS
* Additional honorees due to a tie

INDIVIDUAL AWARDS
Athlete of the Year: Farris Gosea, Illinois
Freshman of the Year: Sam Shropshire, Northwestern
Coach of the Year: Ty Tucker, Ohio State

SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD HONOREES
Tim Kopinski, Illinois
Dimitrije Tasic, Indiana
Michael Swank, Iowa
Shaun Bernstein, Michigan
Aaron Pfister, Michigan State
Jack Hamburg, Minnesota
Marc Herrmann, Nebraska
Alex Pasareanu, Northwestern
Hunter Callahan, Ohio State
Matt Barry, Penn State
Aaron Dujovne, Purdue
John Zordani, Wisconsin