April 29, 2006
It was all Northwestern in the first semifinal, as the Wildcats proved why they are the best in the conference, beating Purdue by a convincing score of 4-0.
Their dominance began on the doubles courts as Alexis Prousis and Cristelle Grier took down Brooke Beier and Mallory Voelker in an 8-0 victory. In the No. 3 spot, Jamie Peisel and Nazlie Ghazal beat Purdue's Anna Dzeva and Brittany Minna 8-2 to secure the point, leaving Georgia Rose and 7-1 lead over Stephanie Wooten and Randi Schuler abandoned.
Northwestern took a 1-0 lead into singles play, where Purdue fought back a bit. Beier took four games in the first set of her No. 2 match and had a 4-3 lead over Grier before the Big Ten Player of the Year turned up her game to win the first set 6-4 and the second, 6-1. At No. 1, Rose dominated Schular 6-1, 6-3 to put the Wildcats up 3-0. Essingher toppled 6-1, 6-0 at No. 5 singles to secure the win for top-seeded Northwestern.
Northwestern advances to the Big Ten Championship final match to face the winner of the Michigan-Iowa semifinal, currently in progress. The Wildcats will be looking for their eighth-consecutive conference crown. First serve is scheduled for noon CT at the University of Illinois' Atkins Tennis Center.