Men's Tennis Hosts Butler; Opens MAC Play This Week
MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State men's tennis team (7-9) hosts Butler (8-4) Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m. The Cardinals will then close out the week with their Toledo first Mid-American Conference match of the season versus Toledo (6-15) Sunday with a 2 p.m. first serve. Both matches will be played at the Cardinal Creek Tennis Center, weather permitting. If moved indoors, they will be played at the YMCA Tennis Center.
Ball State's matches against Butler and Toledo will begin with three doubles matches and finish with six singles matches. The Cardinals are coming off of a 4-0 loss to No. 9 Illinois Sunday while the Bulldogs recently defeated DePauw 5-2, March 19. The Rockets also enter the week with a recent MAC win under their belt after defeating Buffalo 5-2 last Sunday.
"We are excited to get the conference season started," Ball State head men's tennis coach Bill Richards said. “Every match all year is important, but the conference matches take on another level of importance and excitement. Toledo has started strong with an impressive win over a very good Buffalo team last Sunday, so it will be interesting to see how we measure up. Before that we have a tough match with Butler, who defeated Toledo earlier in the year. We have to focus on that match first. It will be similar to a tough conference match. This is a big week for us."
The Cardinals begin league play as the defending Mid-American Conference regular season champions. Ball State ended MAC action last year with an unblemished 5-0 ledger. The MAC regular season crown was the first for the Cardinals since the 2006 season. Ball State has now won 21 MAC titles in program history, including 17 undefeated MAC seasons. Ball State has participated in the MAC for the last 33 years, claiming 37 regular season and/ or tournament championships. Since the MAC tournament format started in 1997, the Cardinals have won the league tournament six times (1998, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2011).
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