Willamette Wins NWC Match with George Fox, 8-1

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University defeated George Fox University, 8-1, in a Northwest Conference women's tennis match on Saturday, Feb. 13 at the Courthouse Tennis Club. The Bearcats improved to 2-1 on the season, 2-1 in the NWC, while George Fox opened its season at 0-1, 0-1 in the NWC.

The Bearcats started with a 2-0 advantage as George Fox had just five players and had to default at #3 doubles and #6 singles. Willamette won both of the contested doubles positions and four of the five contested matches in singles.

Shannon Palmer (So., Salem, OR/Sprague HS) and Kate Thurber (Salem, OR/South Salem HS) of Willamette won #1 doubles over GFU's team of Molly Beaumont and Mollee Robinson, 8-6. WU also prevailed at #2 doubles, with Alyssa Morrison (Sr., Anacortes, WA/Anacortes HS) and Fabi Dieguez (Jr., Salem, OR/Sprague HS/Oregon State Univ.) defeating Liliya Abildayeva and Cara Griffith, 8-4.

George Fox recorded its only win at #1 singles, where Beaumont edged Palmer in two close sets, 7-5, 7-6 (7-4). Morrison won #2 singles for Willamette, as she downed Robinson, 6-3, 6-3. Dieguez of WU took #3 singles in straight sets, 6-4, 6-1 over Allie Michelloti of GFU.

The #4 and #5 singles matches were won by Willamette in three sets. At #4, Jamie Slonaker (Jr., Bainbridge Island, WA/Bainbridge HS) slipped past Cara Griffith, 6-3, 0-6, 6-3. At #5, Brooke Sessums (Jr., Stayton, OR/Stayton HS) outlasted Abildayeva, 6-4, 4-6, 7-5.

Natalia Agarycheva (Jr., Vancouver, WA/Prairie HS/Univ. of Northern Colorado) of Willamette did not play during the match. Agarycheva was ranked #9 in the West Region in singles in the ITA fall rankings for NCAA Division III.

Willamette's next match is on Friday, Feb. 19, when the Bearcats will take on Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore. Match time is set for 3 p.m. (PST).

Saturday, Feb. 13
At Courthouse Tennis Center, Salem, Ore.

Willamette University 8, George Fox University 1

Singles
#1 - Molly Beaumont (GFU) defeated Shannon Palmer (WU), 7-5, 7-6 (7-4)
#2 - Alyssa Morrison (WU) defeated Mollee Robinson (GFU), 6-3, 6-3
#3 - Fabi Dieguez (WU) defeated Allie Michelloti (GFU), 6-4, 6-1
#4 - Jamie Slonaker (WU) defeated Cara Griffith (GFU), 6-3, 0-6, 6-3
#5 - Brooke Sessums (WU) defeated Liliya Abildayeva (GFU), 6-4, 4-6, 7-5
#6 - Katie Huber (WU) won by default

Doubles
1. Palmer and Kate Thurber (WU) defeated Beaumont and Robinson (GFU), 8-6
2. Morrison and Dieguez (WU) defeated Griffith and Abildayeva (GFU), 8-4
3. Slonaker, Jamie/Huber, Katie (WU) won by default

Records:
Willamette University is 2-1 overall, 2-1 NWC. George Fox University is 0-1 overall, 0-1 NWC.

BOX SCORE
Willamette University 8
George Fox University 1
Alyssa Morrison earned wins at #2 singles and #2 doubles against George Fox.

Alyssa Morrison earned wins at #2 singles and #2 doubles against George Fox.