Feb. 15, 2008
EVANSTON, Ill. -- After reaching the finals of the ITA Indoor Championships for the first time in program history, Northwestern sits at No. 2 in the latest ITA poll entering its Big Ten schedule. The 'Cats are gunning for a record 10th-straight Big Ten title and begin their quest by hosting Penn State and Michigan at the Combe Tennis Center this weekend.
Northwestern faces Penn State at 11 a.m. Saturday and takes on No. 25 Michigan at 11 a.m. Sunday. Both matches will be played indoors at the Combe Tennis Center.
Live stats will be available for all matches held indoors at the Combe Tennis Center. Click Here for live stats.
Last Time Out
One week after Northwestern knocked Georgia Tech from its number one ranking, the fourth-ranked Yellow Jackets defeated the third-ranked Wildcats in the finals of the ITA Indoor Championships Sunday, 4-2. NU made its first finals appearance in program history and became the first Big Ten team to advance to the final match. Similar to the last meeting between the two teams, the crucial doubles point came down to the match at No. 1 doubles. However, it was the Yellow Jackets who came away from the doubles portion with a 1-0 lead this time.
NU took wins at No. 1 and No. 6 singles, but Tech won three matches to claim the championship. The Wildcats got on the board when Georgia Rose defeated seventh-ranked Kristi Miller in straight sets, 6-3, 6-1. NU evened the dual at 2-2 when Suzie Matzenauer downed 56th-ranked Noelle Hickey at No. 6, 6-2, 6-4, but Tech took the lead back when 22nd-ranked Whitney McCray defeated 20th-ranked Samantha Murray at No. 3.
NU knocked off Fresno State, No. 7 California and North Carolina to advance to the finals. The Wildcats overwhelmed their first three opponents to the tune of a 12-1 combined score. NU topped Fresno State 4-1 in the first round before racking up back-to-back shutouts against California and UNC. Matzenauer went a combined 4-0 at No. 6 singles on the weekend.
As a team, NU is ranked No. 2 in the country, which is tied for the highest ranking in program history. NU occupied the No. 2 slot during the 2005 season.
Through Northwestern's seven dual matches, two Wildcats have unblemished records. Georgia Rose is 6-0 with a 5-0 mark at No. 2 singles. She won her No. 1 singles match against Georgia Tech last weekend in the ITA Indoor Championships. Suzie Matzenauer is 7-0 with all of her wins coming at No. 6 singles.
As a team, Northwestern has posted a combined 29-4 singles record and is 14-5 in doubles entering the weekend.
Dating back to last season, Suzie Matzenauer has won 13-straight dual matches. All of those wins have come in straight sets.
Northwestern owns a 23-0 series advantage over Penn State and is 41-8 against Michigan all-time. Northwestern faced both teams twice last season. NU defeated Penn Sate, 7-0, in the regular season and 4-0 in the Big Ten Tournament. The Wildcats downed Michigan, 5-2, last year in the regular season and topped the Wolverines, 4-0, in the finals of the Big Ten Tournament.