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COLUMBUS, Ohio The No. 2 Ohio State men’s tennis team (29-1, 10-0) will begin its title defense at the 2008 Big Ten Tournament at 11 a.m. ET Friday at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex on the campus of the University of Iowa. The Buckeyes will meet the winner of the Iowa and Purdue match to be played out at 10 a.m. ET Thursday. Ohio State claimed the No. 1 overall seed after winning the regular-season title last weekend for the third-consecutive season.

KEEP TRACK
Live updates of the 2008 Big Ten Tournament is available on the official website of Iowa and Ohio State Athletics at www.hawkeyesports.com or www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com.

BIG TEN DOMINANCE
The Buckeyes outscored their Big Ten opponents 63-7 this season and outscored opponents 81-9 at home this season. Ohio State has outscored all of its opponents, 254-27, this season. OSU has not lost a Big Ten match since it lost to Illinois 4-2 in the final of the 2005 Big Ten Tournament. The last Big Ten team, other than Illinois, to beat Ohio State was Northwestern. The Wildcats downed the Buckeyes, 5-2, in Evanston, Ill., in 2005.

2008 BIG TEN TOURNAMENT PREVIEW
Ty Tucker has a 16-5 record in the Big Ten Tournament in eight years as head coach of the Buckeyes. the helm of the Buckeyes. As the Buckeyes prepare for their title defense against either Iowa or Purdue, Tucker enters either matchup with a combined 9-0 record against both teams.

Wisconsin (16-7/8-2) earned the No. 2 seed, while Illinois (16-7/8-2) clinched the No. 3 spot. Michigan (17-5/7-3), Penn State (15-10/6-4) and Indiana (15-8/5-5) will be seed Nos. 4, 5 and 6, respectively. Minnesota (6-16, 4-6), Iowa (12-9, 4-6), Purdue (8-14, 2-8), Michigan State (12-12, 1-9) and Northwestern (7-16, 0-10) round out the rest of the field.

The tournament gets underway at 10 a.m. ET Thursday when No. 8 Iowa takes on No. 9 Purdue. No. 11 Northwestern and No. 6 Indiana play at 1 p.m. ET, before No. 10 Michigan State and No. 7 Minnesota close out action at 4 p.m ET.

Day two begins with the top-seeded Buckeyes playing the winner of the Iowa/Purdue match at 11 a.m. ET. Ohio State is the No. 1 seed for the third-consecutive season. OSU has met Illinois in the championship match five times, including the last four seasons. The Buckeyes claimed the title in 2001, 2006 and 2007.

BUCKEYES ON BIG TEN NETWORK
The Big Ten Network will air a delayed broadcast of the championship match of the 2008 Big Ten Men’s Tennis Tournament at 8 p.m. ET Wednesday, May 7. Tom Werme and fomer Northwestern head coach Paul Toricelli will announce the match.
 
200 AND COUNTING
Head coach Ty Tucker, in his ninth year at the helm of the Buckeyes, claimed his 200th career victory against Minnesota March 9 in Minneapolis. Tucker also captured his 80th Big Ten Conference win against No. 47 Iowa March 7 in Iowa City. For his career, Tucker owns a 215-46 record and a 95-16 mark in the league.

SUCCESS AGAINST THE BEST
Ohio State is 20-1 against teams ranked in the ITA Top 75 this season. The Buckeyes have collected wins against No. 5 Ole Miss, No. 6 USC, No. 2 Georgia, No. 9 Baylor, No. 15 Michigan and No. 17 Illinois. Ohio State’s lone loss came at the hands of No. 1 Virginia in the final of the 2008 ITA National Team Indoor Championships Feb. 18 in Seattle, Wash.

TEAM LEADERS
Justin Kronauge, ranked 17th in the nation, leads the Buckeyes in singles wins with 31 (seven losses). So far, Kronauge is 18-4 in dual action with 4-1 and 7-0 records at the Nos. 2 and 3 positions, respectvely. He is 7-3 at No. 1 singles.

The pair of Steven Moneke and Bryan Koniecko leads the team in doubles wins with 27 (three losses). The Buckeye tandem has a dual match record of 22-1 so far this season.

BUCKEYE INDIVIDUALS RANKED HIGH
Ohio State junior Bryan Koniecko is the top-ranked Buckeye singles player. He is ranked No. 17 in the nation in the latest ITA Poll released April 15. Sophomore Justin Kronauge comes in at No. 22, while junior Steven Moneke is ranked No. 33.

The Buckeyes also have three ranked doubles teams. Koniecko and Moneke are the nation’s 13th- ranked doubles team, while senior Drew Eberly and Kronauge come in at No. 19. Freshman Matt Allare and sophomore Mike O’Connell are ranked No. 33.

SENIOR CLASS WINNINGEST EVER
The senior class of Drew Eberly and Dominic Ozanne have an Ohio State record of 107-14. The 107 wins are the most by a class in Ohio State history. The total could increase as the Buckeyes still have to compete in the 2008 Big Ten Tournament and the 2008 NCAA Tournament.

STREAKING IN THE BIG TEN
The Buckeyes have won 36-consecutive Big Ten matches. Ohio State has recorded 10-0 records in regular-season play the last three years. In addition, the Scarlet and Gray has claimed the last two Big Ten tournament titles.

THE BIG TEN’S BEST
Junior Steven Moneke was named the Big Ten Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Week Wednesday. It marked the seventh time this season an Ohio State student-athlete claimed the award, the most in Big Ten history. Moneke also claimed the award March 26.

Bryan Koniecko was named the Big Ten Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Week April 2. Sophomore Justin Kronauge won the weekly laurel twice this season (Feb. 13 and March 12). Senior Drew Eberly earned the honor Feb. 20. Before Eberly and Kronauge garnered the accolades, freshman Matt Allare captured the honor Feb. 6, marking three-consecutive weeks a Buckeye garnered the weekly award.

MORE STREAKING
Several Buckeyes have significant win streaks in singles play.

Player           Win Streak
Steven Moneke    22
Bryan Koniecko   16
Balazs Novak     15
Justin Kronauge  12
Matt Allare      10

BIG TEN RANKINGS
Seven of 11 teams in the Big Ten Conference are ranked in the ITA Top 75.

Rank School
2.   Ohio State 
15.  Illinois
17.  Michigan 
34.  Wisconsin
37.  Indiana
40.  Penn State
55.  Iowa

HOME SWEET HOME
Ohio State extended its home win streak to 71 matches after winning all three of its matches last weekend. The Buckeyes downed Wright State (7-0) April 17. Ohio State then beat No. 42 Penn State (6-1) April 19. The Buckeyes then topped No. 15 Michigan (7-0) in their final home match of the regular season.

The winning streak dates back to the 2003 season, beginning with a 5-2 victory over Purdue April 6. In 2008, for the fifth-consecutive season, Ohio State went undefeated at its home courts, going 14-0.

NOTING THE TUCKER ERA (as of April 22)
Ohio State …
has had 24 Academic All-Big Ten honorees and a two-time Academic All-American (Vincent Ng in 2002 and 03)
has 17 All-Big Ten selections
has earned the program’s first Big Ten Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Year (Ng, 2003), Big Ten Freshman of the Year (Joey Atas, 2004, Bryan Koniecko 2006) and Big Ten Coach of the Year (2001, 2006) awards
  finished 2007 ranked No. 3 nationally as a team with a 30-2 record (13-0 in the Big Ten)
  has been raked in the ITA Top 10 for 43-consecutive matches (beginning March 7, 2006)
  attained program’s best ranking (No. 2) March 20, April 3, 2007
  has won 71-consecutive home matches (4/6/03 to present)
  has won 28-consecutive home Big Ten matches
  won a school record 19-consecutive dual matches from Feb. 2-May 20, 2006
  has won 27-consecutive road dual matches beginning with OSU’s Feb. 26, 2006 win at 4-2 No. 21 VCU to its April 13, 2008 7-0 win at Purdue.
  earned 10 regular-season Big Ten Conference dual match victories for first time in program history,  thrice (2006, 2007 and 2008)
  has won 36-consecutive Big Ten dual matches dating back to 2005 
  had the No. 3 ranked doubles team (32-5 overall in 2006 and 3 national indoor titles from 2004-06)
  has 9-consecutive 20-win seasons (a school record) with Tucker as the head coach
  has 14 20-win seasons all-time, more than half with Tucker as head coach
  has been to eight-consecutive NCAA team tournaments, second in the Big Ten only to Illinois’ 12
  had the No. 1 ranked singles player — Jeremy Wurtzman in 2004, Steven Moneke in 2007
  won the 2001, 2006 and 2007 Big Ten Tournaments
  won outright 2006, 2007 and 2008 Big Ten Championships
  has gone 95-16 (.855) in Big Ten dual competition
  has won 215 dual matches against 46 defeats (.823)
  has a coach with an average record of 23-5 per season (2000-present)
  has the best single regular-season win percentage (2007) in school history (.966/29-1)
  had a player set school career singles win record (132, Ng from 2000-03)
  had a player set the school career doubles win record (118, Ross Wilson from 2003-06; also Scott Green with 117 from 2003-06)
had a player set the school record for career combined singles and doubles (209, Ross Wilson from 2003-06)
Ty Tucker …
  led OSU to the best three-year combined Big Ten record in 2006, 2007 and 2008 (36-0)
  led OSU to the best three year combined regular season record in 2006, 2007 and 2008 (87-5)