The Indiana men's tennis team is back in action this week, as the Hoosiers travel to South Bend to face Notre Dame at 4 p.m. on Friday at the Eck Tennis Pavilion.
When We Last Met... The Irish and Hoosiers faced each other last year, with Notre Dame picking up a 6-1 victory. The Irish, ranked seventh in the nation at the time of the match, won the doubles point with wins at two and three, then went on to get singles wins at two, three, four, five and six to seal the victory.
Indiana's Milan Rakvika claimed an impressive straight-set upset win over 11th-ranked Javier Taborga in the match, while Zach Held and Ryan Recht earned their most impressive doubles win of the year in the match, downing fifth-ranked Casey Smith and Taborga, 8-3 at one.
Series History Notre Dame and Indiana have met 63 times in the past, with the Irish holding a 37-26 series advantage.
Notre Dame has won nine of the last 11 meetings between the two teams, and strung together eight consecutive wins over the Hoosiers from 1992-1999.
Last Time Out The Hoosiers opened the spring dual match season last week with a 7-0 win over Murray State at the IU Tennis Center.
Indiana rolled in the match, with five of the six singles matches being won in straight sets.
Hydinger To Miss Spring Indiana men's tennis head coach Ken Hydinger will miss the Spring dual match season, as he is currently on administrative leave.
Assistant coach Matthew Pledger will step in and serve as the interim head coach.
Hydinger will resume his head coaching duties on July 1.
"This is something that we have done by coach's request," Interim Athletic Director Terry Clapacs said. "I support that, and the well-being of our coaches is paramount to Indiana University."
"I am very appreciative of Mr. Clapacs' understanding," Hydinger said. "I very much look forward to getting back into things in July."
About Pledger Matthew Pledger joins the Hoosiers in his first season as an assistant coach. Prior to coming to Indiana Pledger served as the head tennis professional at Middletown Tennis Club in Middletown, Ohio. There he was responsible for Junior Development and the growth of the future tennis program.
Pledger graduated from Mississippi State University in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in Fitness Management, with a minor in Business.
At Mississippi State Pledger was named to the All-Southeastern Conference tennis team on two occasions and in 1997 earned First Team All-American honors. Academically Pledger excelled as well, earning Academic All-South Eastern Conference on twice.
Pledger has a wealth of experience touring professionally. From 1997-2000 he competed on the ATP Tour, the Challenger Circuit, and the Futures Circuit. During this stint Pledger obtained a doubles rankings of 256 in the world and a singles ranking of 653.
"I am very excited to be here," Pledger said. "I feel that this is going to be great fit for myself. I think that it is going to be an exciting year and I have a lot to offer the program."
What's Next Following Friday's match, the Hoosiers will be back in action on Sunday, January 26, when they host Middle Tennessee State at the IU Varsity Courts. Doubles play is set to begin at noon, with singles starting immediately upon conclusion.