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Men’s Tennis: Irish trek to East Lansing

By Megan Finneran | Friday, February 8, 2013

No. 30 Notre Dame is on the road this weekend, traveling to East Lansing to face No. 48 Michigan State on Saturday. Both squads are 4-3, presenting equal opportunities for victory as they enter the weekend.

All of the losses for both teams have been to ranked opponents. These include No. 37 Northwestern, No. 28 Harvard and most recently No. 9 Duke (ranked No. 5 when they faced the Irish). Michigan State has fallen to No. 31 Memphis, No. 7 Kentucky and No. 64 Princeton.

Memphis offers the only source of comparison. The Spartans lost 6-1 to the Tigers, while the Irish took the win with a 4-0 sweep. Despite this match up, Notre Dame is still focused on the present and the competition facing the weekend.

“Michigan State is a very tough team and they are very good at home,” senior Blas Moros said. “Their courts are some of the fastest in the country and take some getting used to, but most of us have played there before and know what to expect.”

The veterans on the Irish will provide leadership this weekend, as many members of the squad have throughout the season. Notre Dame brings four ranked opponents to the competition, led by No. 80 junior Greg Andrews in the No. 1 singles spot. Junior Billy Pecor stands at No. 88, Moros is tied at 110 and sophomore Wyatt McCoy is No. 120. The Spartans do not have any ranked players.

“We are excited and ready,” Moros said. “A win always helps for sure and it is always good to get some different guys in the lineup.”

The Irish come off a split weekend, falling to Duke but bouncing back to sweep IUPUI 7-0. The weekend marked improvement in all areas and added momentum to the squad.

“With big opportunities like these where we have a chance to beat some good teams, motivation is never a concern,” Moros said. “Doubles has been progressing very nicely with our No. 2 team playing especially well.”

If the Irish can win the doubles point, they will start the weekend on a good foot.

The match will begin at Saturday, Feb. 9 at 12 p.m. in East Lansing.

Contact Megan Finneran at mfinnera@nd.edu