Men’s tennis squad looks to chalk up more wins in Iowa

The state of Iowa has long been a hotbed for football and wrestling, but this weekend the focus is on tennis as far any Huskies are concerned.

The NIU men’s tennis team faces a tripleheader in the Hawkeye State. Tonight, NIU stops in Des Moines for a 6 p.m. match with Drake University. On Saturday, the Huskie caravan moves on to Ames for a 2 p.m. affair with Iowa State University, while Sunday includes a 10 a.m. duel with the University of Iowa in Iowa City.

NIU (2-5) stopped a five-match slide with an 8-1 win over Eastern Michigan University last weekend. If NIU’s one-match winning streak is to continue, however, coach Chuck Merzbacher will need an extra effort.

“This is probably one of our toughest road trips of the year,” Merzbacher said. “We just have to play a point at a time and hope we’re in a dogfight when we get to doubles. Beating Eastern Michigan gives us a little more confidence going into the weekend, but it’s going to be rough.”

Merzbacher’s troops include standout Dustin Dobrin (Libertyville). The junior went 2-0 over the weekend at No. 2 singles to push his season mark to 12-8. Dobrin and freshman Corey Westphal (Durango, Iowa) have teamed up for an 11-6 ledger at No. 3 doubles.