Ohio State Shuts Out Northwestern in Quarterfinals
April 27, 2007
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The defending champion Ohio State Buckeyes took the first step toward a second straight title at the 2007 Big Ten Championship with a convincing win over eighth-seeded Northwestern on Friday. The Wildcats' fight was strong through the doubles competition, but once the Buckeyes triumphed over the first team point, their singles players rolled to victory.
With the win Northwestern fell to 10-14 overall while Ohio State improved to 25-1 and moves into Saturday's semifinal versus the winner of Wisconsin-Penn State.
The No. 1 Buckeye pair of Devin Mullings and Chris Klingemann quickly claimed an 8-3 win over Northwestern's Marc Dwyer and Alex Sanborn, but the Wildcats were putting up a valiant fight in other two matches.
In the No. 2 contest, Northwestern's senior combo of Willy Lock and Matt Christian was down a break against the Buckeyes' Drew Eberly and Justin Kronauge at 6-5 before the Wildcats rallied, winning the next to games and move within a couple points of putting the match away. But the OSU tandem of Bryan Koniecko and Steven Moneke swifly shut the door on Northwestern with a hard-fought 8-6 victory in the No. 3 match.
Mullings kept things rolling for the Buckeyes in singles, dropping only one game en route to a victory over Christian in the No. 3 singles match. Koniecko put the Buckeyes up 3-0 with a convincing showing against the Wildcats' top player, taking out Lock with a score of 6-3, 6-2.
Ranked seventh in the nation, Moneke downed Dwyer in straight sets to clinch the OSU victory. The reigning champs await the winner of Wisconsin-Penn State in tomorrow's first semifinal match at 2 p.m. ET at Purdue University's Schwartz Tennis Center.