Whitman Holds Off Bearcats at Courthouse Tennis Club, 6-3

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Whitman College won #2 doubles in a tie-breaker to complete a sweep of the doubles matches, as the Missionaries defeated Willamette University, 6-3, in a Northwest Conference match on Saturday, March 14 at the Courthouse Tennis Club. Whitman advanced its record to 10-3 overall, including 10-2 in the NWC. Willamette went to 4-8 overall, 3-7 in the NWC.

At #1 singles, Elise Otto of Whitman narrowly defeated Shannon Palmer (Fr., Salem, OR/Sprague HS) of Willamette in two tie-breakers, 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-4). The #2 doubles and #1 singles matches provided the Missionaries with the edge needed to hold off the Bearcats, who won #4, #5 and #6 singles.

The meeting between Otto and Palmer was a rematch of the finals at the Wilson/ITA Small College Northwest Regional Women's Tennis Championship last fall, which Willamette hosted at the WU Tennis Courts. At the ITA Regional, Otto defeated Palmer 6-2, 6-3 to win the title.

Whitman's sweep in doubles was aided by Katie Oost and Divneet Kaur, who won the #2 doubles match over Willamette's Fabi Dieguez (Fr., Salem, OR/Sprague HS/Oregon State Univ.) and Annika Moffett (Fr., Portland, OR/Lincoln HS), 9-8 (7-3). Otto and Margo Lentz of Whitman won #1 doubles, 8-4, over Palmer and Abby Funabiki (Sr., Pullman, WA/Pullman HS/Quinnipiac College).

Despite trailing 3-0 after doubles, the Bearcats put up a tremendous battle in singles. Nearly every set in singles was highly contested.

Kristen Dedijer-Small (Fr., Dallas, OR/Oaks Christian HS/Chemeketa CC) of Willamette won the only match to reach three sets, as she downed Alex Robinson, 7-5, 2-6, 6-4 at #5 singles. Dieguez took #4 singles for the Bearcats with a 6-3, 6-4 triumph over Emily Rolston. Jamie Slonaker (So., Bainbridge Island, WA/Bainbridge HS), who played #6 singles for WU, defeated Amanda Alexander, 6-1, 6-3.

The Bearcats will return to action on Wednesday, March 25 at Southern Oregon University. Match time is set for 10 a.m. (PDT).

March 14, 2009
At Courthouse Tennis Club, Salem, Ore.

#1 - Elise Otto (WTMN) defeated Shannon Palmer (WU), 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-4)
#2 - Hadley DeBree (WTMN) defeated Alyssa Morrison (WU), 6-4, 6-4
#3 - Katie Oost (WTMN) defeated Abby Funabiki (WU), 6-3, 6-3
#4 - Fabi Dieguez (WU) defeated Emily Rolston (WTMN), 6-3, 6-4
#5 - Kristen Dedijer-Small (WU) defeated Alex Robinson (WTMN), 7-5, 2-6, 6-4
#6 - Jamie Slonaker (WU) defeated Amanda Alexander (WTMN), 6-1, 6-3

#1 - Otto and Margo Lentz (WTMN) defeated Palmer and Funabiki (WU), 8-4
#2 - Oost and Divneet Kaur (WTMN) defeated Dieguez and Annika Moffett (WU), 9-8 (7-3)
#3 - DeBree and Rolston (WTMN) defeated Morrison and Slonaker (WU), 8-3

Whitman College is 10-3 overall, 10-2 in the NWC. Willamette University is 4-8 overall, 3-7 in the NWC.

Whitman College 6
Willamette University 3
Fabi Dieguez defeated Emily Rolston at #4 singles, 6-3, 6-4.

Fabi Dieguez defeated Emily Rolston at #4 singles, 6-3, 6-4.