B1G Championships: Purdue upsets Michigan in women's tennis final; U-M golfers 2nd and 3rd
The Purdue women’s tennis team capped its Cinderella run in the Big Ten Tournament by beating No. 2 seed Michigan on Sunday in Columbus, Ohio.
Purdue’s Lynda Xepoleas 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (5) decision against Michigan’s Brooke Bolender at No. 2 singles gave the Boilermakers a 4-3 win.
"You have to give Purdue a lot of credit for the weekend they had. We knew coming in that they were going to be tough," Michigan coach Ronni Bernstein told MGoBlue.com. "It seemed we played a little nervous and scared. That's what I saw, and it's a little bit upsetting."
The fifth-seeded Boilermakers had upset No. 1 seed Northwestern on Saturday, ending the Wildcats’ 13-year tournament winning streak and setting up their shot at the program's first title.
Michigan, which lost to Northwestern in last year's final, started the championship by winning two of three doubles matches to take a 1-0 lead. Three of the first five singles matches completed were in Purdue’s favor, leaving the Big Ten title in the hands of the teams’ No. 2 singles players.
Bolender jumped out to a 4-2 lead in the third-set tiebreaker, but Xepoleas won four straight points to earn double match point, according to MGoBlue.com. Bolender fought off the first, but sent the ball wide on the second.
"It's not about the last person who's on the court. It's the people who finished before that put her in that position," Bernstein said. "It's unfortunate for Brooke, because she did a great job battling back. If she didn't do that, we wouldn't have even been in the position to win the match like we were. It's a team effort. We put in her in that position."
Illinois, which beat Michigan in a semifinal on Saturday, upset top-ranked Ohio State to win the Big Ten men's tennis tournament.
Big Ten Championship: A 2-under-par round of 70 in the final round moved Michigan sophomore Yugene Lee (75-72-70—217) into second place, one stroke behind champion Laura Gonzalez of Purdue. It matches the program’s best finish previously set by Ashley Bauer (2010) and LeAnna Wicks (2002). The Wolverines finished fourth in the team standings, 15 strokes behind champion Michigan State. (Details)
Big Ten Championship: Michigan senior Matt Thompson (74-73-70-72—289) finished third individually and the Wolverines were 10th in the team standings in French Lick, Ind. Illinois won the team title, edging Indiana by three strokes, and the Illini’s Luke Guthrie (283) won the individual championship. (Details)