Feb. 19, 2004

COLUMBUS, Ohio -The No. 16 Ohio State men’s tennis team, 7-1 this season, travels to No. 12 Virginia Commonwealth at 2 p.m. Friday in Richmond, Va. The Buckeyes hit the road again at No. 57 Virginia Tech at noon Sunday, Feb 22 in Blacksburg, Va.

The VCU Rams
No. 12 Virginia Commonwealth, 9-0 in the spring 2004 season, is under the direction of head coach Paul Kostin. Kostin is entering his 14th season at the helm of the Ram program.

The Rams are coming off a 4-0 win over No. 31 Minnesota and a 4-3 decision against No. 42 Wake Forest. Juniors Pedro Nieto, 6-0 in singles and Marton Ott, 5-0 in singles, lead the team. Sophomore Sergi Arumi also is undefeated in singles action with six wins.

Last season, Ohio State defeated VCU, 4-2, at home. The Rams lead the all-time series over the Buckeyes, 7-3.

Virginia Tech Hokies
The No. 57 Virgina Tech team is 4-2 this season with losses to No. 7 Mississippi and No. 28 Virginia. The Hokies are at the helm of sixth-year coach Jim Thompson. Thompson has a career mark of 93-49.

The last meeting betwen the two squads came in 2002. Ohio State defeated Virginia Tech, 4-3, in Columbus, Ohio. In the all-time series, the Buckeyes lead, 4-1.

The Tucker File
Ty Tucker, Ohio State head coach, is in his fifth season at the helm of the Buckeye program. Tucker has a career mark of 89-28 and is 37-10 in Big Ten play. He coached Ohio State to one of its best seasons ever in 2003, as the squad went 22-7 overall and 10-2 in conference action. The Buckeyes finished second in the Big Ten in regular season play and third at the tournament. Ohio State received its fourth-consecutive bid to the NCAA Championship where they saw action in the Round of 16. The team finished the season ranked No. 17.

First Top 10 Win
Ty Tucker and the Buckeye squad claimed their first Top 10 win after a 4-3 upset over No. 8 Vanderbilt Feb. 13 in Columbus, Ohio.

OSU Rolls Over Crimson Tide
After coming off a 4-3 upset over No. 8 Vanderbilt, the Buckeyes defeated No. 17 Alabama, 6-1, Feb. 14 in Columbus, Ohio. With two wins over the top-ranked Southeastern Conference foes, Ohio State improved to 7-1 overall.

Buckeyes 3-1 Against Top 25
Ohio State is 3-1 against Top 25 opponents in the 2004 season. The Buckeyes upset No. 8 Vanderbilt, 4-3, and defeated No. 17 Alabama, 6-1, and No. 24 Clemson, 6-1. Their only loss came at No. 21 Georgia, 5-2.

Wurtzman Ranked No. 1
Buckeye senior Jeremy Wurtzman received the No. 1 spot in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association national poll, released Jan. 13.

Wurtzman claimed the ITA National Indoor title Nov. 9 in Ann Arbor, Mich., and the Midwest Regional crown Oct. 28 in East Lansing, Mich. He defeated three of the Top 10 players in the country at the national indoors. The next individual rankings will be released Feb. 24.

Atas Remains Undefeated In Singles, Defeats Top Players
Freshman Buckeye Joey Atas is 8-0 in singles action this season. Atas has posted six wins at the No. 2 singles postion and one each at Nos. 3 and 4. He defeated two top-ranked opponents including, No. 27 Vanderbilt’s Matthew Lockin and No. 31 Clemson’s Nathan Thompson. The doubles tandem of Atas and senior Jeremy Wurtzman are ranked No. 21 in the preseason and are 4-0 in dual action.

OSU Leads In Doubles Point
The Buckeyes have claimed the lone doubles point in all eight matches this season. The doubles point is awarded after a team wins two-of-three positions. Ohio State is 7-1 in match victories after capturing the doubles point. Their only loss was a 5-2 decision at Georgia.

Contini In Top 10
Senior co-captain Brenton Contini holds the No. 9 spot in all-time career doubles wins at Ohio State. He has posted a 65-31 doubles mark in three years as a Buckeye. Stephen Miguel (1987-90) holds the record at OSU with 85 wins.

Buckeyes Edge Clemson
The Buckeyes defeated 24th-ranked Clemson, 6-1, Feb. 7 in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State took an early lead after claiming the doubles point. The OSU tandem of Scott Green and Ross Wilson defeated the No. 17 doubles pair from Clemson, 8-1, at the No. 1 position. In singles, freshmen Joey Atas, Chris Klingemann and Devin Mullings all pulled through for the Buckeyes at the Nos. 2, 3 and 4 spots after sending each of their matches into three sets.

Four Consecutive Shutouts
Ohio State captured its fourth-consecutive 7-0 shutout after wins over Toledo and DePaul Jan. 30 in Columbus, Ohio. The Buckeyes defeated Xavier and Cleveland State Jan. 23 in their season openers. The 7-0 victory over DePaul marked the first time in program history the Buckeyes opened the season with four-consecutive shutouts.

Tucker Undefeated in Openers
Ty Tucker, head coach, has never lost a season opener since his arrival in the 1999-2000 season. The Buckeyes defeated Xavier and Cleveland State by 7-0 shutouts Jan. 23 in Columbus, Ohio.

Only Loss
The Buckeyes fell, 5-2, Feb. 1 to No. 21 Georgia in Athens, Ga. Ohio State was able to take the doubles point after the OSU tandem of Joey Atas and Dennis Mertens pulled out a 9-7 win at No. 3. Atas posted Ohio State’s second and final point at the No. 3 singles spot. The loss to the Bulldogs was the first of the season for OSU.

Buckeyes Ranked in Preseason
In doubles, Jeremy Wurtzman and Joey Atas are ranked No. 21. Wurtzman and Atas went 6-2 in 2003 fall tournament play and claimed the doubles consolation title Oct. 11 at the ITA All-American Championships in Chattanooga, Tenn.

The OSU tandem of Scott Green and Ross Wilson hold the No. 38 doubles spot. Green and Wilson went 8-4 in fall tournament action and advanced to the semifinal round Oct. 26 at the ITA Midwest Regional Championships in East Lansing, Mich.

Up Next
Ohio State travels to face No. 49 Notre Dame at 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28 in South Bend, Ind. In 2003, the Buckeyes snapped the Fighting Irish’s 14-match win streak in the all-time series between both squads.Ohio State defeated Notre Dame, 6-1.