Thursday, May 13, 2010

Illini teams Easter triumph

April 11, 2010
The Fighting Illini tennis teams welcomed two Big Ten foes for Easter Sunday, but they were sure to let them know just who had the homecourt advantage.

A supporting Orange and Blue crowd -- including the Easter Bunny himself -- was on hand Sunday morning as the Illinois women took on Purdue.   The Boilmakers were certainly a tough opponent to face, as they came in with a 13-2 record -- their only losses to Northwestern and Indiana, but the Illini showed no fear on this extremely windy day.  

The home team swept the doubles and then took control of the singles.  Leigh Finnegan had a quick and easy win over Anna Duhkina for the 2-0 lead.  Jennifer Rabot picked up her 50th win over Marissa Lambropoulos for 2-1, but that would be Purdue's only point. Chelcie Abajian would clinch it at 4-1, and the Illini would go on to also win the next two matches.

By the time the men took the court in the afternoon against Indiana, the wind had gotten strong and there was a threat of showers, so they moved inside.  The Illinois men also had a final win of 6-1, but it was nothing like the women's.  It was a tight match that could have gone either way from the start, when doubles came down to the No. 1 court, where Marek Czerwinski & Abe Souza (above) saved two match points and then defeated  Santiago Gruter & Jeremy Langer, 9-8(10-8).

Singles was not any easier for the Illinois men than doubles and it started with the Hoosiers evening the score after Isade Juneau beat Stephen Hoh, 6-4,6-3.  Dennis Nevolo soon brought one home for the 2-1 Illinois lead. Those first matches would be the only straight setters in a  battle culminated with Johnny Hamui's 2-6,6-1,6-1 clincher over Santiago Gruter.
No. 37 Ilinois 6, No. 41 Purdue 1
Megan Fudge (ILL) defeated Michelle Sammons (PUR), 6-2,6-4
Jennifer Rabot (PUR) defeated Marisa Lambropoulos (ILL), 6-2,6-3
Rachael White (ILL) defeated Bhavani Tirumurti (PUR), 6-3,3-6,1-0(10-7)
Leigh Finnegan (ILL) defeated Anna Dushkina (PUR), 6-1,6-2
Chelcie Abajian (ILL) defeated Imogen Golder (PUR), 6-3,6-3
Breanne Smutko (ILL) defeated Gisella Pere (PUR), 6-0,6-2
Chelcie Abajian/Rachael White (ILL) defeated Michelle Sammons/Jennifer Rabot (PUR), 8-2
Megan Fudge/Leigh Finnegan (ILL) defeated Anna Dushkina/Gisella Pere (PUR), 8-4
Marisa Lambropoulos/Breanne Smutko (ILL) defeated Imogen Golder/Bhavani Tirumurti (PUR), 8-5

No. 15 Illinois 6, No. 41 Indiana 1
Dennis Nevolo (ILL) defeated Lachlan Ferguson (IND), 6-4,6-2
Marek Czerwinski (ILL) defeated Josh MacTaggart (IND), 6-7(4),7-6 (3),1-0 (10-2)
Abe Souza (ILL) defeated Jeremy Langer (IND), 6-4,1-6,6-3
Johnny Hamui (ILL) defeated Santiago Gruter (IND), 2-6,6-1,6-1
Isade Juneau (IND) defeated Stephen Hoh (ILL), 6-4,6-3
Connor Roth (ILL) defeated Alexander van Gils (IND), 4-6,6-1,6-3

Doubles competition
1. Marek Czerwinski/Abe Souza (ILL) def. Santiago Gruter/Jeremy Langer (IND) 9-8 (10-8) 2. Lachlan Ferguson/Josh MacTaggart (IND) def. Stephen Hoh/Connor Roth (ILL) 8-6 3. #60 Dennis Nevolo/Johnny Hamui (ILL) def. Stephen Vogl/Will Kendall (IND) 8-4
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