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Top-seeded Ohio State advances to fourth-consecutive league tournament final

COLUMBUS, Ohio Led by senior tri-captain Steven Moneke with wins at No. 1 doubles and No. 3 singles, the Ohio State men’s tennis team delivered a 4-1 loss to Michigan, host of the 2009 Men’s Tennis Big Ten Tournament, Saturday in Ann Arbor, Mich. The Buckeyes extend their conference win streak to 52-consecutive matches with the victory and advance to the title match at noon Sunday where they will face the winner of the Indiana-Illinois semifinal.

Ohio State (30-1; 10-0 Big Ten) is currently 103-5 in its last 108 league matches, including postseason play. The Buckeyes improve to 21-37-1 against the Wolverines in the all-time series. However, under head coach Ty Tucker, Ohio State owns a 12-2 advantage over Michigan.

Moneke, pairing with junior Justin Kronauge to make the country’s 17th-ranked tandem, downed Michigan’s No. 51 Jason Jung and George Navas, 8-6, at the No. 1 spot to clinch the doubles point for Ohio State. The Buckeye duo of senior Bryan Koniecko and sophomore Shuhei Uzawa recorded a win at No. 3 doubles with a decisive 8-2 victory over Wolverines Drew Daniel and Mike Sroczynski.

In singles, the Scarlet and Gray earned three victories, dropping just No. 5 singles. Moneke, ranked ninth in the ITA national rankings, made quick work of Sroczynski, posting a 6-2, 6-3 win at the No. 3 spot. With the win, the two-time ITA All-American now has 136 career singles wins as program’s all-time career singles wins leader.

Rookie Chase Buchanan earned his sixth conference win and eighth overall of the 2009 spring season with 6-1, 6-4 defeat of Daniel at No. 6 singles. No. 70 Balazs Novak fell, 6-2, 6-4, at No. 5 singles to Navas but Ohio State rebounded with a win at No. 4 singles. Sophomore Matt Allare, ranked 108th in the nation, extended his win streak to 27 after defeating Chris Madden, 6-3, 1-6, 6-2, to clinch the 4-1 victory for Ohio State.

Match 8: No. 1 Ohio State 4, No. 4 Michigan 1
Singles

No. 1 No. 3 Bryan Koniecko (OSU) vs. No. 88 Jason Jung (U-M), 6-2, 5-7, 4-1 (unfinished)
No. 2 No. 25 Justin Kronauge (OSU) vs. Andrew Mazlin (U-M), 6-3, 1-6, 5-3 (unfinished)
No. 3 No. 8 Steven Moneke (OSU) d. Mike Sroczynski (U-M), 6-2, 6-3
No. 4 No. 108 Matt Allare (OSU) d. Chris Madden (U-M), 6-3, 1-6, 6-2
No. 5 — George Navas (U-M) d. No. 70 Balazs Novak (OSU), 6-2, 6-4
No. 6 — Chase Buchanan (OSU) d. Drew Daniel (U-M), 6-1, 6-4

Doubles
No. 1 No. 17 Justin Kronauge/Steven Moneke (OSU) d. No. 51 Jung/Navas (U-M), 8-6
No. 2 — Madden/Mazlin (U-M) vs. Matt Allare/Balazs Novak (OSU), 8-4
No. 3 — Bryan Koniecko/Shuhei Uzawa (OSU) d. Daniel/Sroczynski (U-M), 8-2
Order of Completion: Doubles 3-2-1, Singles 3-6-5-4