Whitman Still Undefeated in NWC after 8-1 Win over Bearcats

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Whitman College kept its undefeated Northwest Conference record intact with an 8-1 victory over Willamette University at the WU Tennis Courts on Sunday, March 14. Whitman, ranked #25 in the nation in NCAA Division III, upped its overall mark to 9-1 on the season, including 8-0 in the NWC. Willamette fell to 7-5 overall, 7-3 in the NWC.

Whitman holds a one-half match lead over Linfield College (7-0) at the top of the conference standings. Even with Sunday's loss, Willamette remained in third place, with Whitworth University (5-3) in fourth and Pacific Lutheran University (7-5) in fifth.

NWC teams each play 16 games during the double round-robin regular season schedule. The top six teams in the nine-team conference will advance to the NWC Tournament, set for April 16-17 in Yakima, Wash.

In Sunday's match, Whitman surged out to a 3-0 lead by winning all three doubles matches. The closest battle was at #2 doubles, where Christoph Fuchs and Quin Miller defeated Cody Ferguson (So., North Bend, OR/North Bend HS/Western Oregon Univ.) and Joshua Wong (Fr., Hilo, HI/Hilo HS), 8-4.

Three of the six singles matches featured at least one tie-breaker.

At #2 singles, Jeff Tolman held off a rally by Wong. Tolman took the first set 6-3, but Wong captured the second set, 7-5. Tolman won a super tie-breaker played instead of a third set, 10-7, to claim the match.

The #4 singles match was won by Willamette's Matt Houser (Jr., Vancouver, WA/Evergreen HS), who also prevailed in a super tie-breaker to defeat Fuchs. Houser achieved a 7-5 win in the opening set, before Fuchs won the second set in a tie-breaker, 7-6 (7-5). Houser outscored Fuchs in the super tie-breaker, 10-7.

Jake Cappel of Whitman triumphed at #6 singles over Micah Mack (Sr., Wenatchee, WA/Wenatchee HS) in another hard-fought match that included a tie-breaker, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5).

Willamette completed a string of three matches in three days. The Bearcats now have an extended break in the action until Friday, March 26, when they will take on the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash. Match time is set for 6 p.m. (PDT).

Sunday, March 14
At WU Tennis Courts, Salem, Ore.

Whitman College 8, Willamette University 1

Singles
#1 - Matt Solomon (WTMN) defeated Michael Baumgartner (WU), 6-1, 6-1
#2 - Jeff Tolman (WTMN) defeated Josh Wong (WU), 6-3, 5-7, 1-0 (10-7)*
#3 - Chris Bailey (WTMN) defeated Cody Ferguson (WU), 6-2, 7-5
#4 - Matthew Houser (WU) defeated Christoph Fuchs (WTMN), 7-5, 6-7 (5-7), 1-0 (10-7)*
#5 - Jasper Follows (WTMN) defeated Luke Lagattuta (WU), 6-1, 6-4
#6 - Jake Cappel (WTMN) defeated Micah Mack (WU), 6-3, 7-6 (7-5)

Doubles
#1 - Solomon and Etienne Moshevich (WTMN) defeated Baumgartner and Houser (WU), 8-1
#2 - Fuchs and Quin Miller (WTMN) defeated Ferguson and Wong (WU), 8-4
#3 - Tolman and Cappel (WTMN) defeated Lagattuta and Mack (WU), 8-2

* Tie-breaker played instead of a third set

Records:
Whitman College is 9-1 overall, 8-0 NWC. Willamette University is 7-5, 7-3 NWC.

BOX SCORE
Whitman College 8
Willamette University 1
Matt Houser of Willamette prevailed at #4 singles over Christoph Fuchs of Whitman, 7-5, 6-7 (5-7), 1-0 (10-7).

Matt Houser of Willamette prevailed at #4 singles over Christoph Fuchs of Whitman, 7-5, 6-7 (5-7), 1-0 (10-7).