April 13, 2009
THIS WEEK — The 58th-ranked University of Iowa men’s tennis team finishes the regular season with two Big Ten matches this weekend. Iowa will play at Minnesota Friday in a match scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. The Hawkeyes will then face Purdue Sunday at home in the regular season finale. Iowa’s Sunday match, against the Boilermakers, will begin at noon.
SCOUTING MINNESOTA — Minnesota, ranked 33rd nationally, is 16-6 overall and 5-3 in Big Ten action. The Gophers are coached by Geoff Young. He is in his third season as head coach of the program.
SCOUTING PURDUE — Purdue is 7-13 overall and 1-7 in conference play. The Boilermakers are led by Head Coach Tim Madden. Madden is in his 15th season at the helm of the program.
THE SERIES — Iowa is 33-51-3 all-time against Minnesota and 35-27 against Purdue. The Hawkeyes lost to the Gophers last season (4-3) and defeated the Boilermakers twice. Iowa defeated Purdue during the 2008 regular season (5-2) and in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament (4-0).
LAST TIME OUT — The Hawkeyes lost at Wisconsin (5-2) and Northwestern (4-3) this past weekend. Wisconsin was ranked 29th nationally and Northwestern 48th. Freshman Tom Mroziewicz moved his dual record to 3-0 with two victories at the No. 6 position.
IN THE RANKINGS — Iowa is ranked No. 58 in the latest ITA team rankings. Nine of the 11 Big Ten schools are nationally ranked. In doubles competition, senior Christian Bierich and sophomore Nikita Zotov are ranked 57th nationally and freshman Will Vasos and junior Tommy McGeorge are ranked 15th in the midwest regional rankings. McGeorge and Vasos are 16-2 in dual match play. Additionally, Bierich, the reigning Big Ten Singles champion, is ranked 15th in midwest regional singles. The rankings can be found at collegetennisonline.com or at itatennis.com.
HEAD COACH Steve Houghton — Steve Houghton, the dean of Big Ten tennis coaches, is in his 28th season as head coach of the Hawkeyes. Houghton has a career record of 309-316 (.494) since taking over the program in 1982. His best season came in 1984 when Iowa won a school record 21 matches and two Hawkeyes earned all-Big Ten honors. In 1989, Houghton was named NCAA Region IV Coach of the Year and picked up his 100th career dual win. 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.