Gophers bounce back from Saturday heartbreaker

Minnesota suffered a tough loss to Illinois before taking down Purdue on Sunday.

The Minnesota women’s tennis team followed up a gloomy start to its final regular season weekend with a bright finish.

up next

big ten tournament
what: Men’s tennis
when: Time TBA, Thursday-Sunday
where: Iowa City

After the Gophers lost a heartbreaking 4-3 dual at Illinois on Saturday – one coach Tyler Thomson called one of the most heartbreaking losses he’s been a part of in recent memory – Minnesota responded by pulling out a 4-3 victory of its own on Sunday, beating Purdue in West Lafayette.

On Saturday, the Gophers (14-10 overall, 3-7 Big Ten) were in control of their dual in Champaign after winning two-of-three doubles matches to gain a 1-0 lead on the Illini. But in stunning fashion – with a win at their fingertips – Thomson’s squad watched as Illinois ran off four-straight singles victories to clinch the match.

up next

big ten tournament
what: Women’s tennis
when: Time TBA, Thursday-Sunday
where: West Lafayette, Ind.

“We had two team match points and almost everybody in the building thought we would win the match, but unfortunately for us there were a couple of Illinois players who didn’t think that,” Thomson said.

As stunned as Minnesota was after arguably its toughest loss of the season, the Gophers showed little resonating effects of the loss on Sunday.

“I think the match Saturday stung a lot, it was so close. But it did fire us up for (Sunday),” senior Lindsay Risebrough said.

Minnesota, which was down 3-2 to the Boilermakers despite securing the doubles point, picked up wins by senior Danielle Mousseau at No. 5 singles (7-5, 7-5) and freshman Alessandra Ferrazzi at No. 1 singles (6-1, 2-6, 6-4) to end the weekend with a victory.

“It was very redeeming to come back and win in that fashion,” Thomson said.

“(Sunday) was a nice response to the loss. We were in the same situation, in a crunch time situation, and Danielle came through for us and then so did Alessandra.”

With the split weekend, the Gophers, who started the week in a four-way tie for seventh place in the Big Ten, secured the eighth seed in the Big Ten tournament which starts Thursday. Ironically, Minnesota will face the Boilermakers in the first round of the conference tournament back in West Lafayette.

“I think that’s good, Risebrough said about playing the Boilermakers again on Thursday. “I think having won that match will give us confidence to play them again.”

Men conclude regular season

The Minnesota men’s tennis team also split its final two regular season duals.

The Gophers (6-16, 4-6) played two conference matches at the Baseline Tennis Center over the weekend, falling to No. 17 Illinois 5-2 on Friday, then beating Purdue 6-1 on Sunday afternoon.

By virtue of a 1-1 weekend, coach Geoff Young said Minnesota appears destined for the seventh-seed in the Big Ten Tournament which starts Thursday in Iowa City and would likely play 10th-seeded Michigan State.

Young said he likes the way his team is playing heading into the conference tournament.

“I think we feel pretty good about ourselves heading into the Big Ten tournament,” he said.

“I think we did pretty well (over the weekend) we had pretty good energy.”