Gophers drop to 0-8 in Big Ten play

by Dan Miller

Angela Buergis walked off her No. 1 singles court looking confident after her final home court match. The 69th-ranked senior had the lone win in Minnesota’s women’s tennis team’s 6-1 loss to 30th-ranked Indiana on Sunday afternoon.

Buergis made quick work of the Hoosiers’ 38th-ranked Dora Vastag 6-3, 6-2 and improved to 13-6 at the top singles position.

“I played very aggressive,” Buergis said. “She was a defensive player, and I was able to move in and get to the net a lot.”

The Gophers (2-17, 0-8 Big Ten) will wrap up their regular season next weekend. Saturday, the Gophers will be in State College, Pa., to take on Penn State and then travel to Columbus, Ohio, to battle Ohio State on Sunday.

Minnesota sophomore Nischela Reddy lost a long two-set match to the Hoosiers’ Linda Tran 6-2, 7-6 (8).

Reddy overcame three set points in the match and narrowly missed wide of the sideline to end the match.

Reddy was visibly tired after the long match, but said afterward she can take positive things from the match.

“You learn the most when you play a close match and have to dig deep,” Reddy said. “You learn a lot about yourself, and it makes you a more mature player.”

The Hoosiers gained the early lead after they swept the doubles matches 3-0. At No. 1 doubles, Tran and Sarah Batty upended the 51st-ranked duo of Buergis and Reddy, 9-8 (6).

Minnesota assistant coach Luciano Battaglini said the Gophers’ performance Sunday was an indication that the team is improving.

“We played a tough match,” Battaglini said. “This showed that we can compete with anyone. It also shows that the freshmen are gaining experience and confidence that will help them next year.”

Battaglini said that the match against Penn State on Saturday will be important to the Gophers. The Lions are also winless in the Big Ten.

“Penn State is the team to beat for us,” he said. “It is also an important match for them. Anything can happen.”

The Gophers are hoping to be completely healthy this weekend as four of their players were limited in practice this week because of illness.

Men win sixth straight

Minnesota’s men’s tennis team pushed their winning streak to six with a 7-0 sweep of Indiana on Saturday.

The 33rd-ranked Gophers (12-7, 7-1 Big Ten) dominated the 56th-ranked Hoosiers by sweeping all singles matches and going 2-1 in doubles.

The Gophers will be home next weekend as they conclude their regular season against Penn State and Ohio State.