Illinois Advances Past Purdue
April 27, 2007
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Ninth-ranked Illinois turned Purdue's upset tepid at the 2007 Big Ten Men's Tennis Championship with a 4-1 victory Friday afternoon at the Schwartz Tennis Center. The third-seeded Illini, who have won eight of the past 10 event titles, advance to the semifinals for the seventh straight year.
Illinois kicked off the match with an early 1-0 lead after swiftly taking the doubles point behind 8-4 efforts of its Nos. 1 and 3 teams. GD Jones and Marc Picijaric sprinted to a win over Purdue's Paul Foley and Griffin Nienberg in the third contest, while reigning NCAA Champions Ryan Rowe and Kevin Anderson quickly followed with a victory over Brankzo Kuzmanovic and Paul Rose.
Spicijaric continued the Illini run in singles with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Eric Hodgman, but Purdue's Paul Foley pulled the Boilers within 1 after shutting down Illinois senior GD Jones (6-2, 7-5).
Big Ten Player of the Year Anderson set up the Illini to clinch after fending off the feisty freshman Kuzmanovic, 6-4, 6-2. His teammate Rowe finished off the victory for Illinois, stepping up after a competitive first set to shut down Rose in the No. 2 singles match.
Illinois (17-7, 8-2 Big Ten) will face second-seeded Michigan on Saturday in the second semifinal of the day at 2 p.m. ET.