Men's Tennis Concludes Homestand; Takes on No. 61 DePaul and NIU
Yohann Nograbat
Yohann Nograbat

Feb. 16, 2007

NORMAL, Ill. - The Illinois State men's tennis team will conclude its homestand this weekend at the Evergreen Racquet Club, taking on DePaul, Saturday at 4 p.m, and will then face Northern Illinois on Sunday at noon. Both matches have be changes from their original start times.

The Redbirds are currently 4-2 in spring action, winning three straight matches last weekend against Butler, Western Illinois and Wright State.

Head coach Greg Kennett knows that DePaul and Northern Illinois have strong programs and are always close to the top of their respective conferences, but feels ISU is ready to take on the challenge.

"We play DePaul and Northern every year and they are both great teams," said Kennett. "DePaul has put together a really nice spring so far. They have beaten some good teams and they are nationally ranked."

The Blue Demons, who are No. 61 in the nation as ranked by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA), are currently 6-2 in spring action and are 1-0 in the BIG EAST Conference. The Redbirds defeated DePaul earlier this fall at the Milwaukee Tennis Classic (Sept. 22-24). Kennett knows that the `Birds have a challenge ahead of them.

"We saw DePaul in the fall and we played them pretty well," said Kennett. "They are going to be a tough match and we are going to have to win the doubles point."

Northern Illinois is currently 1-3 in spring action, gaining their first win this past weekend from Missouri Valley Conference foe, Bradley. Kennett feels NIU and ISU have similar programs.

"Northern Illinois is very similar to us," said Kennett. "They have a lot of returning guys from a young team last year. They have a couple of guys who are really loud and fight hard. We have a tendency to struggle against teams that are loud, so hopefully we can over come that."

Saturday's match against DePaul was originally scheduled to begin at 2 p.m., but will now follow the Redbird women's tennis match, which is slated to begin at 1 p.m. Sunday's match up verses Northern Illinois will begin at noon, instead of 1 p.m.