COLUMBUS, Ohio The 31st-ranked Ohio State women’s tennis team (13-3, 1-1 Big Ten) defeated No. 49 Minnesota (10-4, 0-2 Big Ten), 6-1, Saturday at the OSU Varsity Tennis Center. The start of the match was delayed by seven and a half hours because of a power outage in the building and surrounding area.

The Buckeyes will return to the court at 10 a.m. Sunday to host No. 43 Iowa in a Big Ten conference match in the OSU Varsity Tennis Center.

“This was a tough day with the power outage, but both teams handled it well,” Chuck Merzbacher, Ohio Staet head coach, said. “I’m proud of our team. Minnesota competes very hard and we matched it on every court with a gutsy performance.”

The doubles point belonged to the Scarlet and Gray for the eighth time in nine home matches this year.

Ohio State was able to capture the doubles point behind a strong effort from the No. 1 doubles team of Angela DiPastina and Christina Keesey. Facing Karina Chiarelli and Lindsay Risebrough, the Buckeye tandem used a consistent attack to wear down the Gophers, winning 8-3.

At the No. 3 spot, Caitlin O’Keefe and Paloma Escobedo brought a 7-1 home record against Danielle Mousseau and Jackie Sperling. The Buckeyes shot out to a 5-1 lead before yet another power outage suspended play. Following the break, the Gophers showed new resolve, closing the gap to 5-3. From there, however, it was all Ohio State as Escobedo and O’Keefe closed it out, 8-4.

The No. 2 spot was highly contested, as Julie Blackmore and Cami Hubbs entered the contest against Alessandra Ferrazi and Tijana Koprivica on a 10-match winning streak. The Gopher duo grabbed a 5-3 lead in the early-going, before Ohio State battled back to take a 6-5 advantage. Minnesota was able to push the match to a tiebreaker, where the Buckeyes prevailed, 8-7(5).

Hubbs posted the Buckeyes’ second point with a 6-0, 6-2 victory over Mousseau at the No. 5 spot. The victory was her team-best 27th of the season, as she tied the program record for victories by a freshman. Current assistant coach Sadhaf Pervez (2000) and Kristen Jordan (1997) also posted 27 wins in their rookie campaigns.

O’Keefe put Ohio State ahead, 3-0, with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Sperling at No. 6 singles. Escobedo was the next off the court, as she clinched the Buckeyes’ victory with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Ferrazzi at No. 1. Blackmore beat Chiarelli in straight sets (6-2, 6-3) at No. 3 before Korivica posted a win for the Gophers at No. 4, as she downed Keesey, 6-3, 6-4. The final match off the court was at No. 2 singles, where DiPastina and Risebrough faced off. DiPastina took the first set, 7-6 in a tiebreaker. She was down, 5-1, in the breaker but won the last six points for the set and then won the second set, 6-2.

Ohio State extended its winning streak vs. Minnesota to five matches with the 6-1 victory.

Tennis Match Results
Minnesota vs Ohio State
Mar 22, 2008 at Columbus, Ohio
(The Ohio State Varsity Tennis Center)

#31 Ohio State 6, #49 Minnesota 1

 Singles competition
1. Paloma Escobedo (OSU) def. Alessandra Ferrazzi (MINN) 6-2, 6-3
2. Angela DiPastina (OSU) def. Lindsay Risebrough (MINN) 7-6 (7-5), 6-2
3. Julie Blackmore (OSU) def. Karina Chiarelli (MINN) 6-2, 6-3
4. Tijana Koprivica (MINN) def. Christina Keesey (OSU) 6-3, 6-4
5. Cami Hubbs (OSU) def. Danielle Mousseau (MINN) 6-0, 6-2
6. Caitlin O’Keefe (OSU) def. Jackie Sperling (MINN) 6-4, 6-1

 Doubles competition
1. Angela DiPastina/Christina Keesey (OSU) def. Karina Chiarelli/Lindsay Risebrough (MINN) 8-3
2. Julie Blackmore/Cami Hubbs (OSU) def. Alessandra Ferrazzi/Tijana Koprivica (MINN) 8-7 (7-5)
3. Caitlin O’Keefe/Paloma Escobedo (OSU) def. Danielle Mousseau/Jackie Sperling (MINN) 8-4

Match Notes:
Minnesota 10-4 (0-2 Big Ten); National ranking #49
Ohio State 13-3 (1-1 Big Ten); National ranking #31
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (5,6,1,3,4,2)
Match delayed until 5:30 p.m. because of a power outage