April 22, 2007
2007 Big Ten Championships Bracket
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EAST LANSING, Mich. -- No. 7 Northwestern completed a perfect 10-0 Big Ten season for the third straight year Sunday with a 7-0 win over the Michigan State Spartans in its regular-season finale. The 'Cats, who will enter this week's Big Ten Championship as the top seed, scored their sixth shutout in 10 conference contests.
The Wildcats, who won their seventh conference regular-season title in nine years this season, are gunning for a record-tying ninth-consecutive Big Ten Championship crown. In the Big Ten, while the regular-season champion is awarded a trophy and receives the tournament's No. 1 seed, it is the winner of the conference tournament that is recognized as Big Ten champion.
The win improves Northwestern to 18-4 overall, 10-0 in the Big Ten. Michigan State falls to 12-11, 2-8 in conference. The 'Cats finish 2007 winners of their last 37 Big Ten regular-season matches -- a streak that dates back to 2004.
The top-seeded Wildcats, who have a bye in the first round, will face the winner of the eighth-seeded Penn State and ninth-seeded Michigan State at 10 a.m. Friday, in the second round of the Big Ten Championships, hosted by Minnesota.
The Wildcats jumped out to an early 1-0 lead by sweeping all three doubles matches. At No. 1, Lauren Lui (Houston, Texas/Kinkaid) and Keri Robison (Decatur, Ill./Keystone National) downed Sarah Andrews and Stephanie Kebler at No. 1, 8-6.
NU took all three matches by 8-6 scores as the No. 2 pair of Alexis Prousis
(Lake Forest, Ill./Lake Forest) and Suzie Matzenauer
(Tacoma, Wash./Bellarmine) topped Ana Milosavijevic and Pascale Schnitzer, 8-6, and Alexis Conill
(Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Cardinal Gibbons) and Samantha Murray
(Altrincham, England/Altrincham Grammar) defeated Christine Bader and Christine Milliken at No. 3, 8-6.
The Wildcats took all six singles matches with only one going to a third-set match tiebreak. Murray rolled at No. 1, defeating Christine Bader, 6-2, 7-5.
Prousis needed a match tiebreak to defeat Schnitzer at No. 2, 6-0, 4-6, 1-0 (10-6) while Lui extended her winning streak to nine with a straight-set win over Kebler at No. 3, 6-4, 6-1.
Robison defeated Andrews at No. 4, 7-5, 6-2, and sophomore Nazlie Ghazal (Temecula, Calif./Chaparral) also extended her winning streak to nine with a 6-3, 6-0 win over Marianne Eelens. Matzenauer cruised at No. 6, topping Milliken, 6-0, 6-0.
The Wildcats face the winner of Penn State and Michigan State at 10 a.m. Friday.