WACO, Texas - For the ninth time in the last 11 years, the 13th-ranked Baylor men's tennis team will host first and second round action of the NCAA Tennis Championship.
Baylor, the event's overall No. 13 seed, will welcome Prairie View A&M, Tulsa and Michigan State to Waco and the Hurd Tennis Center for play on Friday and Saturday, May 10-11.
"It is a big deal to be here at home," head coach Matt Knoll said. "We are going to have a crowd out and it is going to be a great atmosphere for us. It is an honor to host. It is what we have worked towards all year. Your seed is not really that important. You just want to be playing your best tennis at the end of the season."
The Bears will be making their 16th consecutive NCAA Championship appearance and be hosting for the 10th time overall. BU is currently 20-5 on the season, after winning its 12th Big 12 regular season title. Baylor has advanced out of the first two rounds of competition for 11 straight seasons and in 13 of the last 14 years. The Bears are coming off a loss against No. 14 Oklahoma in the finals of the Big 12 Championship. That defeat snapped a 10-match win streak for the Bears.
The action in Waco gets underway on Friday, May 10, with Tulsa (15-7) and Michigan State (14-13) meeting at 3 p.m. Head coach Matt Knoll's Bears will take on Prairie View A&M (9-15) in first round action at 6 p.m. The winners of those two matches will then play on Saturday at 6 p.m.
Baylor is one of 16-host sites around the country with the winner of each advancing to the final site of the NCAA Tennis Championships at the Atkins Tennis Center in Urbana, Ill. Team competition in Illinois will be May 16-21, while the singles and doubles championship will take place May 22-27. Selections for those tournaments will be announced on Wednesday.
Baylor is 43-13 in NCAA Championship play all-time and has only lost twice in the opening two rounds in 1998 and 2001.
Prairie View A&M earned an automatic bid by winning the SWAC Championships last weekend in New Orleans to improve to 9-15 on the season.
No. 25 Tulsa earned an at-large bid after winning the Conference USA regular season title. The Golden Hurricane fell in the conference championship to No. 35 Memphis to drop their record to 15-7 on the year. The Bears fell to Tulsa earlier this season 5-2 in Oklahoma.
The 45th-ranked Spartans earned an at-large bid after posting a 14-13 overall record and a 6-5 mark in conference play. Michigan State was ousted in the quarterfinals of the Big 10 Championships by Minnesota, 4-0.
Check out BaylorBears.com for schedule and ticket information.
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