No. 10 Bulldog Tennis To Battle No. 6 Kentucky For Share Of SEC Lead
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Looking to gain a share of the lead in the Southeastern Conference, the 10th-ranked Mississippi State men's tennis squad (16-4, 7-1 SEC) travels to the Bluegrass Friday to take on league-leading No. 6 Kentucky (20-4, 8-0 SEC).
Friday's match with Kentucky is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET (3 p.m. CT) at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex on the UK campus. Live stats will be available on hailstate.com and updates will also be provided on Twitter (@mstateMT).
MSU's 16-4 dual-match record is its best start since the 1998 team began 17-3 while the 7-1 SEC start is the program's best since the 1997 squad started with the same mark.
The Bulldogs are led by a senior threesome in 15th-ranked Artem Ilyushin, No. 44 Louis Cant and 46th-ranked George Coupland. Combining for a stellar 48-8 dual match record this spring, 20-4 in SEC action, these three seniors have paved the way for MSU's success this season.
Also in the rankings for MSU is 67th-ranked sophomore Malte Stropp who is on a two-match win streak while earning five victories in SEC play thus far.
In doubles, the Bulldogs are led by the 32nd-ranked tandem of Cant and Stropp with the No. 43 duo of Coupland and Ilyushin close behind.
Kentucky is led by seventh-ranked senior Eric Quigley, while No. 18 Alex Musialek, 22nd-ranked Anthony Rossi, No. 91 Tom Jomby and 117th-ranked Panav Jha have also earned a spot in the ITA poll.
In doubles, the 17th-ranked duo of Jha and Quigley lead the charge for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats hold an 25-18 advantage in the overall series with MSU, taking a 6-1 victory in the teams' last meeting last season in Starkville.
Following Friday's affair, State meets the 40th-ranked Vanderbilt Commodores (7-11, 2-6 SEC) in Nashville on Sunday before closing the regular season at 14th-ranked arch rival Ole Miss (10-5, 6-2 SEC) on April 14. MSU will host the 2012 SEC Championship April 19-22 during Super Bulldog Weekend.