Ball State vs. Toledo (Thursday, 3 p.m. EST)
Ball State at Western Michigan (Saturday, 1 p.m. EST)
Next Up: Ball State hosts Buffalo (April 21, 1 p.m. EST)
2011 Mid-American Conference Tournament Champions
Ball State Continues Mid-American Conference Action: Ball State managed a 1-1 overall record during last week's action after losing to Northern Illinois, 6-1 and then went on to defeat Chicago State in MAC action, 7-0. With the victory at Chicago State, head men's tennis coach Bill Richard reached his 600 win milestone after being at the helm of the Cardinals for 40 years. On Thursday Ball State hosts Toledo in league action at 3 p.m., where Richards could possibly surpass another milestone as he currently owns a 199 MAC career record and with a win will reach 200.
Richards One Milestone To Go: Head Coach Bill Richards reached 600 overall career victories at Chicago State Easter Sunday. He needs one win to reach 200 overall Mid-American Conference victories. He has been the head men's tennis coach for 40 years at Ball State.
Albertin Earns MAC Weekly Honors: Dalton Albertin went undefeated (2-0) for the week of March 26-31 for the Cardinals after posting a 7-6 (4), 7-5 victory at No. 2 singles over Butler's Tommy Marx helping Ball State to a 6-1 victory. With the win Albertin helped head coach Bill Richards to his 599th career win just one-shy of reaching the 600 milestone. Albertin also captured a 6-3, 7-6 (5) victory at No. 1 singles over No. 41 Notre Dame's Casey Watt Saturday afternoon in Notre Dame, Ind. The MAC weekly honor was the second of his career at Ball State.
Leonard Two-Time MAC Player of the Week Recipient: Ball State freshman Ray Leonard (Bloomington, Ind./North) was named the Mid-American Conference Tennis Player of the Week for the second time this season. The conference officials announced today. Leonard helped the Cardinals improve to 6-2 overall on the season after going 3-0 at No. 1 doubles, 2-0 at No. 2 singles and 1-0 and No. 3 singles. Leonard now owns a 6-2 record in singles and doubles play for the season. He won in straight sets over Detroit Mercy, Illinois State and Anderson University. Leonard's victories allowed the Cardinals to earn wins over Detroit Mercy (6-1), Illinois State (4-3) and Anderson (7-0).
Men's Tennis Tabbed the Mid-American Conference Pre-Season Favorite: The Cardinals are the 2011 defending MAC Tournament Champions. Ball State welcomes back ten letterwinners from last year's squad including junior Dalton Albertin who was named First Team All-MAC for the first time in his career and was also named to the All-MAC Tournament team in 2010. Senior Cliff Morrison garnered Second Team All-MAC honors for the third straight season. Morrison also received The Most Outstanding Player of the MAC Tournament Award along with being voted to the All-MAC Tournament team for the 2011 season joining teammate junior Austin Sansone.
A Look Back at 2010-11: Ball State has now won 19 regular season championships and 17 tournament titles in program history, including 16-undefeated MAC seasons. Ball State has participated in the MAC for the last 37 years. The Cardinals have played in seven NCAA tournaments, five of those were as MAC Tournament champions. The legacy began in 1984 after the Cardinals posted a 19-5 overall record and an 8-0 stint in league play. Since the MAC tournament format started in 1997, the Cardinals have won the league tournament six times (1998, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2011).
Quote From Head Coach Bill Richards: This will be a very challenging week with Toledo at home Thursday and Western Michigan on the road Saturday. This loss to Northern Illinois really puts us in a must win situation in every match now. Our players know what is at stake and we look forward to challenge. The Northern match was tough. We lost a lot of close matches and had our chances but they were the better team on their home courts that day. Now we have to focus on the future. There is still a lot of tennis to be played.