March 14, 2004
What you need to know: Who: #45 Florida State Men's Tennis What: Home Matches Versus NC State, #1 Illinois & #10 Duke When: Mon. (Mar. 15), 2 p.m.; Sat. (Mar. 20), 1 p.m.; Sun. (Mar. 21), 1 p.m. Where: Tallahassee, Fla. (Scott Speicher Tennis Center)
HOMESTAND HIGHLIGHTED BY NO. 1 ILLINOIS & NO. 10 DUKE: It’s a weekend like no other in the history of Florida State University men’s tennis. The middle of the #45 Seminoles’ (8-5 overall / 1-1 ACC) four-match homestand in bold big letters is defending NCAA Champion and nationally ranked No. 1 Illinois on Saturday (March 20), followed the next day by tenth-ranked Duke. Both matches begin at 1 p.m. The four-match streak kicks off Monday (March 15) at 2 p.m. when the Tribe faces North Carolina State.
FSU TRIES TO END ILLINOIS’ 46-MATCH WINNING STREAK: It’s been nearly two years since Illinois last lost a dual match. On March 13 the Fighting Illini (14-0) set the NCAA record with their 46th-straight victory. Florida State takes on Illinois for the first time since 1979 and faces the defending national champion for the first time in school history. The Seminoles have won both of the previous two meetings with the Illini and are 27-20 against the Big Ten Conference after a win versus #46 Michigan on February 27.
SEMINOLES TRY TO SNAP LOSING STREAK TO #10 DUKE: As if taking on the top team in the land wasn’t tough enough, Florida State comes right back on Sunday to take on tenth-rated Duke (11-4 overall / 1-0 ACC). Winners of nine of the 12 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships contested, Duke has taken the last ten contests with the Seminoles. FSU’s only win against the Blue Devils came during the 1996 campaign. Duke won last year’s only meeting 4-3 in Durham, N.C.
FSU LOOKS TO STAY UNBEATEN AGAINST THE WOLFPACK: While Duke may have FSU’s number, the tables are turned for the Tribe when it comes to North Carolina State (4-6 / 1-1) Florida State has won all 12 matches against the Wolfpack, including last year’s contest 6-1 in Raleigh, N.C. At home FSU has only dropped nine points in six matches.
RANKED PLAYERS ABOUND AT SCOTT SPEICHER TENNIS CENTER: With a pair of top ten teams coming to Tallahassee, there will naturally be an abundance of the best players in the country on hand. All told there will be seven ranked singles players and six rated doubles teams. One of each will be wearing Garnet and Gold as Mat Cloer (Brevard, N.C.) holds the No. 20 spot in singles, while Chris Westerhof (Duban, South Africa) and Jeff Groslimond (Atlanta, Ga.) are ranked 22nd in doubles.
On the opposite side of the net, Illinois brings in #4 Brian Wilson, #29 Phil Stolt, #67 Chris Martin and #87 Ryler Deheart in singles, as well as the No. 3 tandem of Stolt & Wilson and #33 Martin & Michael Calkins. Ranked Duke players include #7 Ludovic Walter and #11 Phillip King with #4 Jason Zimmerman & Walter and #42 Ryan Heinberg and Chris Brown ranked in doubles.
FSU SPLITS MATCHES AGAINST #19 VIRGINIA AND #32 MIAMI: The Tribe found itself on both sides of a 4-3 decision last week to ranked opponents. First the Seminoles dropped their first ACC match against Virginia, then turned the tables with a triumph against Miami.