Hawkeyes Spend Spring Break In Texas

March 14, 2008

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THIS WEEK — The No. 41 University of Iowa men’s tennis team (6-3 overall, 1-1 Big Ten) will play at Lamar Tuesday. The match is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. In addition, the Hawkeyes will compete in the Rice Invite. Iowa will play Rice (Friday), San Diego (Saturday) and Middle Tennessee State (Sunday).

SCOUTING LAMAR — Lamar, 5-6 overall, is a member of the Southland Conference. Five of the Lamar’s losses have come at the hands of ranked teams. They are led by first-year head coach Greg Davis.

SCOUTING RICE — Rice, 9-4 overall, has defeated eight ranked teams and is rated No. 11 nationally. They are coached by Ron Smarr. He is in his 11th season as head coach of the Owls.

SCOUTING SAN DIEGO– San Diego is 5-5 overall on the season. They are ranked No. 62. The Toreros are coached by Tom Hagedorn. He is in his 12th season.

SCOUTING MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE — Middle Tennessee State, 6-9 overall, is ranked No. 70. They are led by first-year head coach David McNamara.

THE SERIES — The Hawkeyes lead the Lamar Cardinals 1-0. The Rice Owls lead the all-time series against Iowa, 2-1. The Hawkeyes are 0-4 against San Diego and have never faced Middle Tennessee State.

LAST TIME OUT — Iowa fell to No. 2 Ohio State, Friday, at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Center. The Hawkeyes led at some point in the first set of five singles matches before falling to the Buckeyes.

IN THE RANKINGS — In men’s singles rankings, senior Bart van Monsjou is No. 109. As a team, Iowa is ranked No. 41. Rankings are produced by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA). They are released every Wednesday and can be found at collegetennisonline.com.

BIG TEN TOURNAMENT — The University of Iowa will be hosting this year’s Big Ten Tournament, April 24-27. The tournament will be held at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex (indoor) and the Klotz Outdoor Courts.

HEAD COACH Steve Houghton — Steve Houghton, the dean of Big Ten tennis coaches, is in his 27th season as head coach of the Hawkeyes. Houghton has a career record of 291-302 (.491). His best season came in 1984 when Iowa won a school record 21 matches and two Hawkeyes earned all-Big Ten honors. Four of Houghton’s athletes have also been selected Big Ten Sportsman of the Year. He became the winningest coach in Iowa tennis history in 1992 and is a member of the Iowa Tennis Hall of Fame. While playing at Iowa, Houghton had a career winning percentage of .727 (40-15), second best in Iowa history.

QUOTING COACH HOUGHTON — “Our guys gained some confidence and learned some lessons in playing tight matches with No. 2 Ohio State. Hopefully those lessons will pay off as we play three more highly ranked teams on the spring trip. One of our additional tests is going to be playing outdoors for the first time in a long time.”

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