April 25, 2015
URBANA, Ill. — Another year and it’s another meeting with Illinois in the Big Ten Tournament Championship for Ohio State men’s tennis team. The Buckeyes rolled to a 4-0 victory over No. 3-seed Minnesota in semifinal action on Saturday in rainy Urbana.
The win sends the Buckeyes into the B1G Tournament finals for the 12th-straight season. They will be going for their 10th title since 2006.
Ohio State faces top-seeded Illinois in Sunday’s final. The teams have met twice already this season and the Illini have gotten the upper hand each time. Illinois won 4-1 in a consolation match at the ITA National Indoor Championships and then won 4-0 indoors at Illinois in the team’s conference meeting.
Minnesota was one of the hottest teams in Big Ten as they were coming off a victory over Illinois last Friday to grab a share of the regular season title. But Ohio State jumped out early with wins at Nos. 2 and 3 doubles to take the doubles point. Mikael Torpegaard and Herkko Pollanen at No. 2 and Chris Diaz and Hunter Callahan at No. 3 won their matches 8-4.
After the start of the match was delayed by over three hours due to rain, the doubles matches and beginning of the singles matches were played outdoors. The rain then returned forcing the conclusion of the match to be played indoors.
Metka and Steinbach got their revenge in singles play as they started the Buckeye run with straight-set wins. Steinbach got the best of Froment 6-2, 6-2 at No. 6 singles. Metka also rolled 6-3. 6-4 over Hamburg on court five and Callahan won 6-4, 6-4 against Ruben Weber at No. 4. Being dominant at the bottom of the lineup was the calling card for the Buckeyes throughout the season as they lost just two matches in the 4-5-6 spots during B1G play.
Ohio State has won nine-straight matches and is now 25-7 on the season.
#12 Ohio State 4, #23 Minnesota 0
1. #49 Chris Diaz (OSU) vs. #25 Leandro Toledo (MINN) 3-6, 4-4, unfinished
2. #47 Mikael Torpegaard (OSU) vs. #57 Matic Spec (MINN) 6-4, 3-4, unfinished
3. Herkko Pollanen (OSU) vs. Felix Corwin (MINN) 7-5, 1-0, unfinished
4. Hunter Callahan (OSU) def. Ruben Weber (MINN) 6-4, 6-4
5. Kevin Metka (OSU) def. Jack Hamburg (MINN) 6-3, 6-4
6. #97 Ralf Steinbach (OSU) def. Mathiew Froment (MINN) 6-2, 6-2
1. #56 Mathiew Froment/Jack Hamburg (MINN) def. #4 Kevin Metka/Ralf Steinbach (OSU) 8-6
2. Herkko Pollanen/Mikael Torpegaard (OSU) def. Felix Corwin/Leandro Toledo (MINN) 8-4
3. #85 Hunter Callahan/Chris Diaz (OSU) def. Eric Frueh/Matic Spec (MINN) 8-4
Minnesota 19-7 (9-1); National ranking #23
Ohio State 25-7 (10-1); National ranking #12
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (6,4,5)