January 27, 2005 - by
Florida State Hits The Road For Tough Bouts With #5 Illinois & #34 Notre Dame

Jan. 27, 2005

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First Serve:
#41 Florida State at #5 Illinois; Friday (Jan. 28), 7:30 p.m. (CST)
Atkins Tennis Center — Champaign, Ill.
#41 Florida State at #34 Notre Dame; Sunday (Jan. 30), 1:30 p.m. (EST)
Eck Tennis Pavilion — Notre Dame, Ind.
FSU Record: (3-0, 0-0 ACC) / Illinois: (1-0) / Notre Dame: (4-0)

Ground Strokes:
Florida State Hits The Road For Tough Bouts With #5 Illinois & #34 Notre Dame
If Florida State University head coach Dwayne Hultquist wants an early indications of his team’s progress, he’ll certainly get it this weekend. The Seminoles take to the road for a 7:30 p.m. (CST) contest at #5 Illinois on Friday, followed by 34th-ranked Notre Dame at 1:30 p.m. (EST) two days later. Starting Friday, the Tribe will face five ranked opponents in a row, including three in the top 20.

Seminoles Look To Upset Illini After Last Year’s Close Call
Last season few teams played the defending national champion Illini closer than the Seminoles. Even though they lost 5-2 to Illinois on March 20, the Tribe put a scare into the Illini. The match was tied at two after singles wins by Chris Westerhof (Durban, South Africa) and Jonathas Sucupira (Sao Paulo, Brazil), but the Illini pulled out a pair of three-set matches for the victory.

34-Match Winning Streak On The Line For Illinois
Not since the 2001-02 season has Illinois dropped a home match, dating back to a 4-3 loss to Notre Dame on March 7, 2002. The Illini has also won their last nine home openers under head coach Craig Tiley. Illinois has a line-up that features three ranked players, including No. 2 Ryler DeHeart. He and GD Jones team up to form the No. 4 doubles team in the land. FSU is 2-1 versus Illinois with both wins coming in the 1970’s

Similar Squads Square Off Sunday
Florida State and Notre Dame could be mirror images of each other as neither team has a high ranked singles player or doubles team, but relies more on a total team effort. The Irish’s top player is 77th-ranked Stephen Bass. Plagued by injuries last year, the Seminoles dropped a 6-1 decision to then No. 35 Notre Dame last year in Tallahassee. The Seminoles are 3-2 against Notre Dame, having won in the Hoosier State, 4-3, in 2003.

FSU Stays Unbeaten, Taking Down Jacksonville 7-0
The Seminoles ran their record to 6-0 in home openers under Dwayne Hultquist with a 7-0 win over Jacksonville on Jan. 22. FSU swept an opponent for the second time this season and has won 19 of 21 points in 2005. The sweep of the Dolphins was FSU second straight as it has won 20 of 21 points in the last three matches.

Cloer And Westerhof Move Up On Doubles List
With their victories in doubles action against Jacksonville, Mat Cloer (Brevard, N.C.) and Chris Westerhof both moved up a spot on the FSU career doubles list. For Cloer it was win No. 52, giving him sole possession of ninth place, while Westerhof moved into a tie for tenth place at 51 wins with Rodrigo Laub. Westerhof’s partner Jeff Groslimond (Atlanta, Ga.) — who form the No. 32 duo in the country — has 55 doubles wins, putting him two short of No. 7 Michael Ingham.

Two-Time ACC Player Of The Year Up One On Singles Chart
By beating Bjoern Behles 7-5, 6-1, Mat Cloer recorded his 69th singles win, equaling Neil Krefsky for the number nine spot. The two-time ACC Player of the Year has 121 overall victories, placing him eighth in Seminole lore. His next singles win will tie him with Paul Haarhuis for eighth.

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