The Little Brown Jug is headed back to Minneapolis.
The 24th-ranked Minnesota men's tennis team (13-2 overall, 4-0 in the Big Ten) upset No. 22 Michigan (10-7 overall, 3-2 in the Big Ten) 5-2 on the road to reclaim the Little Brown Jug. The Gophers last had the jug in 2009 when they beat Michigan 4-3. The two teams have split the last six regular-season meetings.
Minnesota returns to the Twin Cities with not only the Little Brown Jug but with a weekend sweep or ranked foes Michigan and Michigan State (Gophers dropped the 53rd-ranked Spartans 4-3 on Saturday). The Gophers have won five straight matches heading into next weekend's home tilts against Indiana (April 8) and Purdue (April 10).
The Gophers got off to a good start against Michigan, as they won the doubles point for the 11th time in 15 matches this season. Tobias Wernet and partner Rok Bonin won 8-4 against Barrett Franks and Chris Madden at No. 2 doubles, while Brendan Ruddock and Julian Dehn were triumphant 8-6 against Shaun Bernstein and Chris Cha at third doubles. The No. 77-ranked duo of Sebastian Gallego and Phillip Arndt were unable to upset No. 19 Jason Jung and Evan King at No. 1 doubles, as the Wolverines prevailed 8-3.
Michigan tied the match 1-1 when Bernstein defeated Gallego 6-2, 6-0 at No. 3 singles, but the Gophers quickly went up 2-1 after Ruddock cruised to a 6-2, 6-3 win against Justin Rossi at the fifth slot. It was Ruddock's tenth win of the year. Michigan again tied the match when the 21st-ranked King handed Bonin a 6-4, 6-2 setback at No. 1 singles.
With the match tied 2-2 and with three matches still undecided the Gophers showed their depth, which has been its strength all season long, and took control.
Arndt earned Minnesota's third point with a 7-6 (7), 6-3 win at fourth singles and then Dehn secured the match and the Little Brown Jug with a three-set win against Cha at No. 6 singles. Dehn won 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. Wernet then closed out the match with a 6-4, 1-6, 6-3 upset win at the second position against No. 57 Jung. It was Wernet's third straight win and he also beat No. 50 Enej Bonin of Denver on March 26.
April 3, 2011
Varsity Tennis Center
Ann Arbor, Michigan
No. 24 Minnesota 5, No. 22 Michigan 2
1. No. 21 Evan King (MICH) def. Rok Bonin (MINN), 6-4, 6-2
2. Tobias Wernet (MINN) def. No. 57 Jason Jung (MICH) 6-4, 1-6, 6-3
3. Shaun Bernstein (MICH) def. Sebastian Gallego (MINN), 6-2, 6-0
4. Phillip Arndt (MINN) def. Barrett Franks (MICH), 7-6 (7), 6-3
5. Brendan Ruddock (MINN) def. Justin Rossi (MICH), 6-2, 6-3
6. Julian Dehn (MINN) def. Chris Cha (MICH) 6-3, 4-6, 6-3
1. No. 19 Jason Jung/Evan King (U-M) def. No. 77 Sebastian Gallego/Phillip Arndt (MINN), 8-3
2. Tobias Wernet/Rok Bonin (MINN) def. Barrett Franks/Chris Madden (U-M), 8-4
3. Brendan Ruddock/Julian Dehn (MINN) def. Shaun Bernstein/Chris Cha (U-M), 8-6
Order of Completion: Doubles: 2-3-1; Singles: 3-5-1-4-6-2