Bearcats Defeat Puget Sound in Men's Tennis, 7-2, and Finish Regular Season at 9-7

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University pulled into a tie for fourth place in the Northwest Conference standings with a 7-2 victory over the University of Puget Sound at the WU Tennis Courts on Saturday, April 11. The Bearcats finished the regular season at 9-7 overall and 9-7 in the NWC. Willamette and Whitworth University (9-7) tied for fourth place. Puget Sound fell to 7-12 overall, 5-11 in the NWC.

The NWC Tournament is up next for the Bearcats, starting on Friday, April 17 in Yakima, Wash. Willamette, which won the tie-breaker with Whitworth, is the #4 seed in the six-team tournament.

Against Puget Sound, the Bearcats won two of three doubles matches and triumphed in five of six singles matches. Andrew Murakami (Sr., Wahiawa, HI/Leilehua HS/Univ. of Redlands) led the way with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Nick Kelley at #1 singles. Murakami and Micah Mack (Jr., Wenatchee, WA/Wenatchee HS) combined to win #2 doubles over Kelley and Alex Harrison, 8-3.

The #1 doubles match was won by Willamette's Cody Ferguson (Fr., North Bend, OR/North Bend HS/Western Oregon Univ.) and Matt Houser (So., Vancouver, WA/Evergreen HS). They defeated Zac Peller and Stefan Berglund of UPS, 8-3.

Willamette claimed its five singles victories without losing a set. Joining Murakami as winners in singles were Ferguson at #2, Houser at #3, Mack at #5 and Michael Moore (So., Seattle, WA/Lakeside HS) at #6.

Puget Sound achieved wins at #3 doubles and #4 singles. Scooter Sabel contributed to both wins.

At #4 singles, Sabel earned a quick victory in the first set with Alex Sepanzis (Sr., Denver, CO/Cherry Creek HS), but Sepenzis forced a tie-breaker in the second set. Sable won 6-0, 7-6 (7-1). In the #3 doubles match, Sabel and Andrew Timmons edged WU's team of Sepenzis and Moore, 8-6.

At the NWC Tournament, Willamette will play the #5 seed, Whitworth, in the first round on Friday at 8 a.m. (PDT). The #3 seed, Linfield College, will take on Puget Sound, seeded #6, in the other first round match. Whitman College, seeded #1, and Pacific Lutheran University, seeded #2, will receive first round byes.

The winner between Willamette and Whitworth will take on Whitman at 12:30 p.m. on Friday. The NWC Tournament will conclude on Saturday, April 18.

For more information about the NWC Tournament, go to the NWC Tournament website.

Friday, April 11
At WU Tennis Courts, Salem, Ore.

Willamette University 7, University of Puget Sound 2

Singles
#1 - Andrew Murakami (WU) defeated Nick Kelley (UPS), 6-3, 6-3
#2 - Cody Ferguson (WU) defeated Alex Harrison (UPS), 6-0, 6-0
#3 - Matt Houser (WU) defeated Zac Peller (UPS), 6-1, 6-2
#4 - Scooter Sabel (UPS) defeated Alex Sepenzis (WU), 6-0, 7-6 (7-1)
#5 - Micah Mack (WU) defeated George Murphy (UPS), 6-2, 6-1
#6 - Michael Moore (WU) defeated Andrew Timmons (UPS), 6-4, 6-2

Doubles
#1 - Ferguson and Houser (WU) defeated Peller and Stefan Berglund (UPS), 8-3
#2 - Murakami and Mack (WU) defeated Kelley and Harrison (UPS), 8-3
#3 - Sabel and Timmons (UPS) defeated Sepenzis and Moore (WU), 8-6

Records:
Willamette University is 9-7 overall, 9-7 in the Northwest Conference. The University of Puget Sound is 7-12 overall, 5-11 in the NWC.

MATCH RESULTS
Willamette University 7
University of Puget Sound 2
Cody Ferguson won #2 singles over Alex Harrison, 6-0, 6-0. Ferguson and teammate Matt Houser also won #1 doubles.

Cody Ferguson won #2 singles over Alex Harrison, 6-0, 6-0. Ferguson and teammate Matt Houser also won #1 doubles.