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TENNIS

After years of knocking on door, Ohio State men's tennis hopes to kick it down in NCAAs

Even the coach and his star players at Ohio State concede that many people don't know they are a college tennis powerhouse.

After all, the best Division I teams in warm-weather sports like baseball, golf and tennis all come from California, Florida and other sunny climes, don't they?

Yet hard-nosed coach Ty Tucker, a former Buckeyes player, has built a strong program that was second to Southern California in the 2009 NCAA and continues to knock at the door of national prominence.

With a mix of standouts such as homegrown Peter Kobelt and Slovenia native Blaz Rola, the Buckeyes are talented, experienced and deep.

No wonder Kobelt says "everyone should be watching out for us" at this week's NCAA round of 16 in Champaign, Ill.