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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The four-time defending Big Ten Champions and No. 4 Ohio State men’s tennis team is set to begin the conference regular season against No. 60 Purdue at 6 p.m. Friday at The Ohio State University Varsity Indoor Tennis Center. A win against the Boilermakers would mark the 100th consecutive home victory for the program.

Live updates will be available at OhioStateBuckeyes.com. Admission is free.

The Buckeyes (12-1; 0-0 Big Ten) have won four-consecutive matches with wins against No. 9 Kentucky (5-2), Wright State (7-0), No. 13 Louisville (5-2) and No. 17 Texas A&M (4-3) since dropping a 4-1 decision to No. 1 Virginia Feb. 14. Ohio State owns a perfect 10-0 record at home this season with five victories over Top 25 opponents. 

SEEKING 100 IN A ROW
Ohio State extended its home win streak to 99 consecutive matches after downing No. 13 Louisville, 5-2, March 3 and No. 17 Texas A&M, 4-3, March 7 at The Ohio State University Varsity Indoor Tennis Center. No other Big Ten team in any sport has won as many consecutive matches/games at home than the Buckeyes. The Scarlet and Gray won its 16 home competitions last season, marking the sixth-consecutive year the Buckeyes won all their home matches. The streak began in 2003, starting with a 5-2 victory over Purdue April 6.

LAST TIME OUT
The Buckeyes defeated No. 13 Louisville March 3 and No. 17 Texas A&M  March 7 to improve to 10-0 overall at The Ohio State University Varsity Indoor Tennis Center.

In the first match, the Buckeyes won, 5-2, over the Cardinals to claim their fourth win against a Top 15 opponent this season. Ohio State won the doubles point to begin the day with wins at Nos. 2 and 3, respectively. Senior co-captain Justin Kronauge and junior Balazs Novak defeated Viktor Maksimcuk and Sumit-Prakash Gupta, 8-4, to claim the first point of the match. In singles, the team won three-consecutive matches to defeat Louisville. Kronauge sealed the win after downing No. 54 Simon Childs 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, at No. 2 singles.

In the weekend finale, Ohio State won a close 4-3 match over the Aggies to hit double digits in the wins column at home this year. The highlight of the doubles point for the Buckeyes was sophomore Chase Buchanan and freshman Dino Marcan upsetting the ninth-ranked doubles pair in the country at No. 1 with an 8-7 (7-5) victory over Austin Krajicek and Jeff Dadamo. In singles, the Buckeyes won matches at Nos. 6,1,3 to defeat Texas A&M. Kronauge, ranked 30th in the latest ITA polls, claimed the match after winning 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 against Alexis Klegou at No. 3.

BUCKEYES RECEIVE HIGH RANKING
Ohio State is No. 4 in the Campbell/ITA College Tennis Rankings released Tuesday. Guided by 11th-year head coach Ty Tucker, the Buckeyes have now been ranked in the Top 25 in the ITA rankings for 10 consecutive years.

Ohio State is 2-0 when ranked No. 4. The Buckeyes have been ranked in the ITA Top 10 for 101-consecutive matches. That streak began March 7, 2006.

BUCKEYES RANKED IN THE POLLS
Four Buckeyes are in the Top 125 of the Campbell/ITA College Tennis Rankings. In singles, sophomore Chase Buchanan is No. 23. Senior co-captain Justin Kronauge is No. 30, while freshman Dino Marcan is No. 47. Junior Shuhei Uzawa is polled at No. 91.

Buchanan is 13-4 overall this season with a 9-1 mark at No. 1 singles. Kronauge is 15-3 overall with a 6-3 record against nationally-ranked opponents. Marcan is 12-3 overall, including a 3-1 mark against nationally-ranked opponents. He is 8-3 in dual play. Uzawa, a native of Chiba, Japan, is 13-10 overall.

In doubles, junior Balazs Novak and Marcan are No. 53. The Buckeye duo leads the team in wins with 11 victories this season.

LOOKING GOOD EARLY
Ohio State has never lost its first match of the season under head coach Ty Tucker. The former Buckeye owns an opening-day record of 22-0 since taking over the helm 11 years ago (The Buckeyes traditionally play two matches on opening day).

REGULAR-SEASON DOMINANCE
Led by 11th-year head coach Ty Tucker, the Buckeyes have won a school-record 96 consecutive regular-season (non-tournament) matches dating back to 2006. Ohio State last lost, 5-2, Feb. 26, 2006 to Notre Dame in South Bend.

THE PURDUE BOILERMAKERS
Purdue, ranked 60th in the latest ITA team standings, is 7-4 overall on the season. Last time out, the Boilermakers opened up Big Ten play with a 6-1 loss against No. 42 Penn State March 7 in University Park, Pa. The team began the season with a six-match win streak before suffering its first loss against No. 48 Vanderbilt (7-0) Feb. 7 in Nashville, Tenn. The Boilermakers have one win against a ranked opponent this season when the team defeated No. 61 Harvard in a tight 4-3 match Feb. 20 in West Lafayette, Ind. Purdue made the ITA team standings for the third consecutive poll, climbing five spots from No. 65.

OHIO STATE VS. PURDUE
The Buckeyes own a 67-18 all-time record against the Boilermakers. Under head coach Ty Tucker, Ohio State is a perfect 10-0 against Purdue. The Buckeyes have posted 7-0 victories against the Boilermakers during the past four seasons.

BUCKEYES VS. BIG TEN OPPONENTS
In 2008-09, Ohio State recorded a combined Big Ten singles record of 58-2 and a total Big Ten doubles ledger of 26-4. In singles, five Buckeyes lost one match or less during the year, including Balazs Novak (10-0), Matt Allare (9-0), Justin Kronauge (8-1), Chase Buchanan (6-1) and Shuhei Uzawa (5-0).

Currently, Ohio State has won 53 consecutive matches in league play and is now 104-5 in its last 109 league matches, including postseason play. The Buckeyes have not lost to a Big Ten opponent in an away dual match since the 2004-05 campaign, dropping a 5-2 decision at Northwestern.

SUCCESS IN DUALS
Ohio State has been dominant in the beginning of the 2010 campaign in dual action. In singles, the Buckeyes are a combined 60-15 (.800). Junior Balazs Novak paces the squad with 12 victories. In doubles, the Scarlet and Gray are a combined 29-10 (.744). Novak and freshman Dino Marcan lead the way with an 8-2 mark, while juniors Matt Allare and Shuhei Uzawa are 7-3.

Last season, Ohio State finished with a combined dual-record of 173-23 (.883) in singles and was 81-22 (.786) in doubles.

NOVAK LEADS BUCKEYES
In singles, junior Balazs Novak leads the Buckeyes in wins this season with 17 singles victories and tops the team in doubles with 16 wins.

Novak is 17-5 overall, winning eight of his last 10 matches. In 67 career dual matches, the native of Budapest, Hungary, has only suffered five losses.

Novak is 16-3 overall in doubles. Partnering with freshman Dino Marcan, the Buckeye duo is 11-2, including an 8-2 mark in dual action.

BUCHANAN AT NO. 1
Sophomore Chase Buchanan has had an impressive transition to the top of the singles lineup to begin the 2009-10 campaign. Through 10 matches at No.1, the native of New Albany, Ohio, has a 9-1 record. During the stretch, Buchanan has been victorious over six nationally-ranked opponents including two in the Top 10. He defeated seventh-ranked Alexandre Lacroix of Florida 6-2, 6-4 in the quarterfinals of the 2010 ITA National Team Indoor championship Feb. 13, while downing eighth-ranked Eric Quigley of Kentucky 7-5, 6-2 Feb. 21 in Columbus.

Buchanan began the 2010 spring season polled No. 103 in the ITA standings and has climbed 80 spots in the polls to 23rd in the nation in the latest rankings announced March 2.

KRONAUGE, O’CONNELL TO LEAD BUCKEYES
Seniors Justin Kronauge and Mike O’Connell were named 2009-10 team captains, head coach Ty Tucker announced.

A 2008 ITA All-American and two-time Big Ten honoree (2008, ’09), Kronauge returns for his final season with the most singles and doubles wins of any active member on the team. In three seasons with Ohio State, Kronauge has claimed 126 singles wins and 105 doubles victories.

O’Connell, a native of Holland Ohio, returns for his final year as a doubles specialist for the Buckeyes. O’Connell has a career doubles record of 32-14 and 17-9 in dual play.

KRONAUGE CLIMBS SINGLES, DOUBLES CHARTS
Senior Justin Kronauge won two singles matches and two doubles matches against Louisville March 3 and Texas A&M March 7 to continue his rise in the program’s record books for career singles victories. In singles, the Dayton, Ohio, native has 126 career victories, which is tied for fourth on the all-time career wins list with former Buckeye Roger Smith (1983-1986).

In doubles, Kronauge became the sixth Buckeye in program history to hit the 100-win mark. He currently has 105 career doubles wins, which is fifth on the all-time career wins list.

He is also just the third Buckeye in OSU history to have at least 100 singles wins and 100 doubles wins. Former Buckeyes Bryan Koniecko and Steven Moneke are the other two student-athletes to accomplish the feat.

Kronauge is currently third on the all-time combined career wins list with 231 victories. Koniecko and Moneke are first and second, respectively, with 254 and 247 victories.

AGAINST THE BEST
Several Buckeyes have claimed key wins against opponents ranked in the Campbell/ITA Division I Men’s Singles Rankings.

BUCKEYE WINS VS. RANKED OPPONENTS IN 2009-10:

Justin Kronauge (15-3 overall)
No. 21 Ashley Watling (Tulsa) – 7-6 (7-5), 6-2
No. 29 Reid Carleton (Duke) – 6-3, 6-1
No. 29 Alex Musialek (Kentucky ) – 6-4, 6-3
No. 54 Simon Childs (Louisville) – 6-2, 3-6, 7-5
No. 70 Alex Llompart (Pepperdine) – 6-3, 7-6 (7-3)
No. 84 Simon Childs (Louisville) –  7-5, 6-2

Chase Buchanan (13-4 overall)
No. 7 Alexandre Lacroix (Florida) – 6-2, 6-4
No. 8 Eric Quigley (Kentucky ) – 7-6, 6-2
No. 16 Austin Krajicek (Texas A&M) – 6-3, 7-6 (7-3)
No. 34 Austen Childs (Louisville) – 6-4, 6-7 (1-7), 6-4
No. 36 Clay Donato (North Carolina) – 6-3, 6-4
No. 90 Bassam Beidas (Pepperdine) – 5-7, 6-3, 7-6 (7-2)
No. 98 Stephen Havens (Notre Dame) – 6-1, 6-3

Shuhei Uzawa (13-10 overall)
No. 38 Javier Garrapiz (Georgia) – 7-6, 6-3
No. 78 Mihai Nichifor (Columbia) – 6-1, 6-2

Dino Marcan (12-3 overall)
No. 16 Jarmere Jenkins (Virginia) –  6-1, 6-4
No. 81 Andrew Carter (Louisville) –  6-3, 6-4
No. 99 Brennan Boyajian (North Carolina) – 6-1, 7-5

Balazs Novak (17-5 overall)
No. 96 Sebastian Fanselow (Pepperdine) – 6-3, 7-6 (8-6)

Matt Allare (9-4 overall)
No. 122 Chidi Gabriel (Louisville) – 6-4, 6-3

Steven Williams (13-3 overall)
No. 97 Marek Czerwinski (Illinois) – 6-4, 6-4

STRONG JUNIOR CLASS
Juniors Matt Allare, Balazs Novak and Shuhei Uzawa have had impressive careers since joining the team during the 2007 campaign. In singles, the trio has a combined overall record of 201-60 (.770) in less than three complete seasons at Ohio State. Allare, Novak and Uzawa are a combined 40-4 in Big Ten play.

In doubles last season, the three Buckeyes each won at least 25 matches in both singles and doubles as sophomores.

BIG TEN RANKINGS
Ten of the 11 teams in the Big Ten Conference are ranked in the latest Campbell/ITA College Tennis Division I Rankings announced Tuesday.

RANK  SCHOOL
   4  Ohio State
  10  Illinois
  25  Michigan
  37 Northwestern
  38 Wisconsin
  43  Indiana
  46  Penn State
  52  Minnesota
  54  Iowa
  60  Purdue

THE BIG TEN’S BEST
For the sixth time this season, a Buckeye was named Big Ten Player of the Week the conference announced Tuesday. Sophomore Chase Buchanan won his third-career weekly honor after his performance against No. 13 Louisville March 3 and No. 17 Texas A&M March 7. He won the award two previous times this year (Feb. 2 and Feb. 23). Senior co-captain Justin Kronauge (Feb. 9) and freshman Dino Marcan (Jan. 19 and Feb. 16) earned athlete of the week honors earlier this season.

NOTING THE TY TUCKER ERA (as of March 10)
Ty Tucker Accomplishments…

  • Named 2009 Wilson/ITA National Coach of the Year; the first in program history
  • has 34 Academic All-Big Ten honorees and a two-time Academic All-American (Vincent Ng in 2002 and ’03)
  • has 23 All-Big Ten selections
  • has coached three Big Ten Men’s Tennis Athletes of the Year (Ng, 2003, Bryan Koniecko 2008 and ’09), three Big Ten Freshmen of the Year (Joey Atas, 2004, Koniecko 2006 and Justin Kronauge, 2007) and owns five Big Ten Coaches of the Year (2001, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009)
  • had the No. 1 ranked singles player — Jeremy Wurtzman in 2004, Steven Moneke in 2007, Koniecko 2009
  • has won 267 matches against 50 defeats (.842)
  • has an average record of 26-5 per season (2000-present)
  • has the best single regular-season win percentage (2009) in school history (.947/36-2)
  • has had two players set school career singles wins record (132, Ng from 2000-03; 146 Moneke from 2006-2009)
  • has had three players set the program’s career doubles wins record (Koniecko with 125 from 2006-2009; Ross Wilson with 118 from 2003-06; Scott Green with 117 from 2003-06)
  • has had two players set the school record for career combined singles and doubles wins (254, Koniecko from 2006-2009; 209, Ross Wilson from 2003-06)

 Ohio State Accomplishments Under Tucker…

  • Advanced to the program’s first NCAA Championships Final (2009)
  • finished 2009 ranked No. 2 nationally as a team with a 36-2 record (10-0 in the Big Ten)
  • has been ranked in the ITA Top 10 for 101-consecutive matches (beginning March 7, 2006)
  • attained program’s best ranking (No. 1) Jan. 6 – Feb. 19, 2008
  • has won 99-consecutive home matches (April 6, 2003 to present)
  • has won 31-consecutive Big Ten home matches
  • has won 53-consecutive Big Ten dual matches dating back to 2005
  • has won 96-consecutive dual matches (non-tournament) from Feb. 26, 2006 – present
  • earned 10 regular-season Big Ten Conference dual match victories for first time in program history, four times (2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009)
  • has won 40-consecutive regular-season away dual matches beginning with Feb. 26, 2006 win (4-2) at No. 21 VCU to its April 12, 2009 win (6-1) at No. 16 Illinois
  • had the No. 3 ranked doubles team (32-5 overall in 2006 and 3 national indoor titles from 2004-06)
  • has 10-consecutive 20-win seasons (a school record) with Tucker as the head coach
  • has 15 20-win seasons all-time, more than half with Tucker as head coach
  • has been to 10-consecutive NCAA team tournaments, second in the Big Ten only to Illinois’ 14
  • won the 2001, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 Big Ten Tournaments
  • won outright 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 Big Ten Championships
  • has led Ohio State to the best four-year combined Big Ten record in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 (40-0)
  • has led Ohio State to the best four-year combined regular season record in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 (129-8)

UP NEXT
Ohio State will host Detroit Mercy at 5 p.m. March 18 at The Ohio State University Varsity Indoor Tennis Center. Live updates will be available at OhioStateBuckeyes.com. Admission is free.