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Men’s tennis hosts trio of matches

March 31, 2011
Patrick Fisher

Patrick Fisher

The Northern Illinois men’s tennis team will play three home matches this weekend at the Boylan Tennis Center in Rockford, Ill.

The Huskies will open Mid-American Conference play Friday, April 1, against Western Michigan at 1 p.m. and will also face Chicago State at 5 p.m. Friday. NIU will wrap up the weekend hosting Drake at noon Sunday, April 3.

“We are anxious to get a chance to play Western Michigan,” said NIU head coach Patrick Fisher. “They have been the strongest team in the league the last five years and they are extremely talented. We follow that up with Chicago State and on Sunday we will play a very good, nationally-ranked team from Drake. I am excited to see our guys play their first conference match because the intensity tends to pick up a little bit and every point is more meaningful.”

Last time out, NIU (8-9) fell at Bradley, 4-2, snapping a four-match winning streak.

Maksym Bartiuk and Axel Lagerlof each picked up singles wins for the Huskies against the Braves. Lagerlof earned a 6-1, 6-1 victory at first singles to claim his team-high 13th singles victory of the spring. Bartiuk was a 6-2, 6-2 winner at second singles, he is now 12-5 in singles play this season.

Western Michigan enters the weekend with a 10-8 overall record; the Broncos have won three-straight matches including a 7-0 defeat of Buffalo in their conference opener.

Chicago State, who competes as an affiliate member of the Mid-American Conference in men’s tennis, will be playing its first conference match of the season

Drake is 13-2 this spring and is ranked 71st in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings. Drake has won seven consecutive matches, with its last loss coming against Minnesota on Feb. 25.

For more information on NIU men’s tennis and Huskie athletics, visit