COLUMBUS, Ohio – No. 2 Ohio State (26-2; 8-0 Big Ten) defeated No. 23 Illinois (12-5, 6-2) 7-0 Friday night. The victory extended Ohio State’s Big Ten win streak to 87 matches. In addition, the Buckeyes won their 144th consecutive home contest.
Chase Buchanan sealed the conference victory after posting a 6-4, 6-4 win against No. 5 Dennis Nevolo on court one to make it 4-0. Buchanan, ranked 13th, has 22 singles wins this year.
With the 7-0- victory, the Scarlet and Gray have now won 10 consecutive vs. Illinois, all under the direction of head coach Ty Tucker. Overall in the series, Ohio State posts a 40-54-1 overall record against the Fighting Illini.
Devin McCarthy and Ille Van Engelen, ranked 23rd nationally, were the first doubles team to win, defeating Tim Kopinski and Ross Guignon 8-1 at the No. 2 position. It was their team high 28th victory.
Connor Smith and Peter Kobelt claimed the doubles point for the Buckeyes after pulling away from Stephen Hoh and Farris Gosea on court three to win 8-4.
In the final doubles match, the top ranked doubles tandem in the nation, Buchanan and Blaz Rola, beat Nevolo and Ray Kalmanovich, the 25th-ranked doubles team, 8-3 on court one. It was the duo’s 26th win together this season, including a 17-2 mark at the top position, 11-1 vs. ranked opponents and 5-0 in league play.
Rola, ranked seventh, beat Kalmanovich quickly at No. 2 singles to give Ohio State a 2-0 lead. His 6-0, 6-1 win was his 27th singles victory of the season. Van Engelen lifted the Buckeyes to a 3-0 lead after he earned his sixth conference win of the year, winning 6-3, 6-4 against Kopinski at No. 4. Buchanan clinched the victory shortly after with his big win on court one.
In other singles play, Kobelt was a 6-4, 7-5 winner on court four vs. Bruno Abdelnour, Smith defeated Gosea 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 at No. 6 and McCarthy beat Hoh 6-4, 7-6 after falling behind 3-0 in the first set.