Jan. 30, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The No. 18 Florida State men's tennis team opens play at the ITA National Indoor Team Championships against No. 33 Duke on Saturday, January 31, at 9:00 a.m., in University Park, Pa. The Seminoles and Blue Devils will be joined by No. 21 Oklahoma State and No. 44 Penn State for the first two rounds of the tournament.
"I like the fact that we have an ITA National Championship and an NCAA National Championship," FSU head coach Dwayne Hultquist said. "Now we have two big events that we're playing for on a national level."
The Garnet and Gold (3-2) come into the match after defeating No. 32 Notre Dame 4-3 on Wednesday. FSU defeated Duke (2-0) last season 7-0 in Tallahassee and 4-0 at the ACC Tournament in Altamonte Springs, Fla. Saturday's match will not count in the ACC standings.
"We were fortunate to beat them twice last year, but we know that they are a good team," Hultquist said. "They are a better team this year and they always play well indoors and we know we'll have a battle on our hands."
The winner of Florida State's match will play the winner of Oklahoma State and Penn State on Sunday. The Cowboys will be playing their first match of the season against the Nittany Lions. OSU is led by the nation's 5th-ranked player Oleksandr Nedovyesov who is the highest ranked player from the four teams this weekend. Penn State comes in with a 2-0 record and is the host for the first two rounds of the regional.
"We don't get around to playing teams like Oklahoma State or Penn State very often," Hultquist said. "These matches will give us an idea of how we stack up against other big conferences like the Big XII and the Big 10."
A win by Florida State will earn Hultquist his 142nd victory at FSU making him the all-time wins leader. For live stats and a match recap log onto www.seminoles.com.