#22 Illini Return to National Indoor Championships
Feb. 12, 2014
URBANA, Ill. - The No. 22 ranked Illini squad head to Houston, Texas, today to prepare for the National Indoor Championships. Illinois was given the No. 10 seed and will face the seventh seeded and ranked Oklahoma Sooners this Friday at 9 a.m. CT at the Met. The trip marks the team's first time back to the national tournament since 2011. The tournament will take place at two locations in Houston: the Downtown Club at the Met and the Galleria Tennis and Athletic Club, so be sure to match the correct live scoring link with the right location indicated on the bracket.
First up for the Illini at National Indoors is Oklahoma. Illinois is just 2-2 all-time vs. the Sooners. The last time these two squads met on the tennis court was way back in 1996, when Craig Tiley's squad emerged with a 6-1 win. Last season, Oklahoma advanced to the Round of 16 at the NCAA Championships.
NATIONAL INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY
SCOUTING THE SOONERS
The Sooners have quite the one-two punch in Guillermo Alcorta and Axel Alvarez Llamas. In the latest poll released Feb. 11, the duo were ranked second and fourth in the country in singles, respectively. In addition, Alcorta is 5-0 at the No. 1 spot and Alvarez is 5-0 at No. 2 singles.
Oklahoma also presents plenty of depth, as Andrew Harris is ranked 28th and Dane Webb 46th. Both Harris and Webb are undefeated at 3-0 and 4-0, respectively, with both rotating with each other between the No. 3 and No. 4 spots.
In doubles, Webb teams with Harris at the No. 1 position. The combo is ranked 12th in the country and are 3-0 on the young dual season. Alcorta teams with Alvarez and are 4-0 in No. 2 doubles while Nick Papac and Peerakit Siributwong have recorded a 3-0 mark at No. 3 doubles.
B1G TENNIS ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
NEW ILLINI RANKINGS
Tim Kopinski moved from No. 46 to a career high No. 24. Kopinski is 5-1 in the No. 3 spot this season and has won three straight matches in a row.
Farris Gosea has had the most impressive start to any Illini this spring. Gosea jumped all the way from No. 106 to No. 30 in the latest poll. Primarily playing in the No. 6 spot a season ago, Gosea has been a force at No. 2 singles, achieving five straight wins, including three vs. opponents ranked in the top-40.
In doubles, Kopinski and Ross Guignon only fell one spot to No. 5 in the country. The duo are 4-2 in dual matches this season. Last week, the pairing surrendered just three combined games in both their wins over top-25 ranked teams.