No. 4 Northwestern Wildcats (18-9) vs No. 5 Nebraska Cornhuskers (9-14)
Friday, April 29 at Noon CT
Nielsen Tennis Stadium (Madison, Wisc.)
Live Stats: http://sidearmstats.com/wisconsin/mten/
Live Video: https://uwbadgers.com/sports/2016/11/1/tennis-video-streams.aspx?id=1239
Link to Bracket: https://bigten.org/news/2022/4/24/general-2022-big-ten-mens-tennis-tournament-bracket-announced.aspx
Nebraska is riding a three-game winning streak into the tournament, knocking off Purdue, Indiana, and Penn State to end the regular season. The Huskers’ five conference wins was the most NU has had since joining the Big Ten, and just their third, five-win season in program history. As the No. 5 seed, Nebraska will take on the No. 4 seed Northwestern on Friday, April 29 at Noon CT. The Huskers have already played Northwestern once this year, losing narrowly 4-3 at the Dillon Tennis Center, but took them to the limit in last year’s Big Ten Tournament.
Live streams and stats are available in the links provided above. Updates will be posted to Huskers.com and @HuskerMTennis on Twitter.
• The Wildcats enter Friday’s matchup with an 18-9 record, having won five of their last seven matchups. They also boast a 6-3 conference record.
• Northwestern has one player on the ITA Top-125 Singles Rankings List: (No. 41 Steve Forman) and one team on the ITA Top-90 Doubles Rankings List: (No. 73 Steven Forman / Felix Nordby):
• They hold wins over several ranked teams including Memphis, Louisville, North Carolina, Duke, Princeton, and Oregon.
• Steven Forman leads the team with 16 wins, holding an 16-3 record in singles play. He has competed in the No. 1 spot for the Wildcats in all 19 of his matches by him.
• Nebraska is 0-12 against Northwestern, however they almost defeated them at the Dillon Tennis Center earlier this season, losing 4-3.
• Although the Huskers have never defeated the Wildcats, they also took them to the limit last season in the Big Ten Championships, falling just short, 4-2.
• If the Huskers win, they will get the winner of Ohio State vs Michigan State / Purdue on Saturday, April 30 at 11 am CT. Should they win that, the Big Ten Championship will be held on Sunday, May 1 at Noon CT.
Last Weekend Notes:
• The victory marked Nebraska’s first three-match Big Ten winning streak since also accomplishing the feat in its first season as a conference member in 2011-12.
• The Huskers also secured their first five-win Big Ten season since joining the conference, and just their third five-win season in program history.
• The last time Nebraska won five conference matches in a season came in 1989, when the Huskers finished second in the Big Eight with a 5-1 record. The 1989 team featured NCAA runner-up Steven Jung.
• The 4-1 victory over the Nittany Lions also locked up Nebraska’s first winning season in conference play since 1993, when NU was a member of the Big Eight.
Hietaranta Continues Strong 2022 Campaign
• Roni Hietaranta started the year off strong, winning his first six singles matches to begin the season with a 6-0 record. Dating back to the fall, he now has 15 total singles wins which marks the most on the team thus far.
• On Jan. 25, Hietaranta was named Big Ten Co-Athlete of the Week after singles wins over Baylor and Oklahoma. He knocked off the No. 54 ranked singles competitor in the nation, defeating Oklahoma’s Jordan Hasson, 6-4, 7-5. The Lappeenranta, Finland native also defeated Baylor’s Cole Gromley in the No. 6 spot, 6-1, 6-3.
• Three weeks ago, Hietaranta rallied back from a 4-2 hole to knock off Wichita State’s Orel Ovil and clinch the victory for the Huskers. He won the singles match against Ovil 6-4, 2-6, 6-4. Last weekend, he knocked off Princeton’s Filippos Astreinidis in consecutive sets to push his spring record to 7-3.
• Following a short injury stint, he returned against UCF and won in the No. 6 spot, 6-3, 6-3, to give him eight wins in the spring.
• He currently holds a 5-3 conference record and has victories in matches against Michigan State and Northwestern. He has a 14-6 singles record in the spring. With 22 wins spanning over the fall and spring campaigns, Hietaranta is tied for 19th all-time in Nebraska history and is the first Husker over 20 wins since Toby Boyer and Linus Erhart in 2018.
Maruyama and Huber Stay In The ITA Rankings
• Dario Huber and Shunya Maruyama have won seven of their last eight doubles matches, including wins over Michigan, Illinois and Northwestern.
• They remained in the rankings at the No. 81 slot this week in the ITA Top-90 Doubles Rankings after winning seven of their last 10 doubles matches.
• In singles play, Maruyama is second on the Huskers with 16 total wins, and he holds a 9-9 spring record. Six of his wins of him have come in the No. 3 and No. 6 spots.
• He has been victorious in eight of his last 14 completed matches, including singles victories in matches against UCF and Cornell.
Lozano Holding Down Back Half Of Lineup
• Victor Moreno Lozano ranks second on the Huskers with 10 spring wins, as he holds a 10-6 spring record. Eight of his wins of him have come in the No. 5 and No. 6 spots.
• He has been victorious in nine of his last 14 completed matches, including singles victories in matches against Oregon, Michigan State and Wisconsin.
• He has also competed with Nic Wiedenhorn in the No. 1 spot for doubles, winning three of their last four completed matches with victories against Michigan State, Wisconsin, and Penn State.