Bearcats Down Boxers, 5-2 in 5th Place Match

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110 and Sara Brooks, Assistant Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6219

YAKIMA, WASH. -- Willamette University defeated to Pacific University, 5-2, in the 5th place match of the Northwest Conference Women's Tennis Tournament on Friday, April 16 at the Yakima Tennis Club. Willamette concluded its dual match season with a 12-9 overall record. Pacific ended the year at 6-14 overall.

Natalia Agarycheva (Jr., Vancouver, WA/Prairie HS/U. of Northern Colorado) led a Willamette sweep of the top four singles matches by winning #1 singles in three sets over Cat Goya. Agarycheva won the first set and lost a tie-breaker in the second, before pulling away in the third for a 6-1, 6-7 (6-8), 6-2 victory.

Agarycheva, ranked #8 in the West Region of NCAA Division III, improved to 18-2 on the season. She will compete at the prestigious Ojai Tournament in California later this month.

At #2 singles, Shannon Palmer (So., Salem, OR/Sprague HS) won in straight sets over Megan Yoshimoto of Pacific, 6-2, 6-1. In the #3 singles match, Katie Huber (Fr., St. Peter, MN/St. Peter HS) of WU won the first set against Dayna Wong, 6-3, then rolled to a 6-1 triumph in the second set.

Alyssa Morrison (Anacortes, WA/Anacortes HS), the Bearcats' only senior, completed the top-four sweep. She defeated Rachel Mizuno, 6-1, 6-3, to finish the year with a 14-7 record in singles action.

Willamette had to rally from a 2-1 deficit following doubles play. Goya and Yoshimoto won #1 doubles over Agarycheva and Palmer, 8-5. The Boxers also won #2 doubles, as Wong and Mizuno defeated Morrison and Jamie Slonaker (Jr., Bainbridge Island, WA/Bainbridge HS), 8-2.

WU picked up a win at #3 doubles, when Huber and Emily Bee (So., Portland, OR/Lincoln HS) downed Stephanie Velligas and Michelle Soga, 8-2.

It was an exceptional season for the Bearcats, who went 5-3 at home and 7-6 on the road. Willamette finished 4th in the NWC during the regular season at 10-6. Pacific was sixth in the NWC in the regular season at 6-10.

Action during the NWC's double round-robin schedule in the regular season determined the official placing in the conference. The NWC Tournament is used only to determine which team receives the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Friday, April 16
NWC Tournament - 5th Place Match
At Yakima Tennis Club, Yakima, Wash.

Willamette University 5, Pacific University 2

#1 - Natalia Agarycheva (WU) defeated Cat Goya (PAC), 6-1, 6-7 (6-8), 6-2
#2 - Shannon Palmer (WU) defeated Megan Yoshimoto (PAC), 6-2, 6-1
#3 - Katie Huber (WU) defeated Dayna Wong (PAC), 6-3, 6-1
#4 - Alyssa Morrison (WU) defeated Rachel Mizuno (PAC), 6-1, 6-3
#5 - Emily Bee (WU) vs. Stephanie Velligas (PAC), did not finish
#6 - Jamie Slonaker (WU) vs. Dawn Greene (PAC), did not finish

#1 - Goya and Yoshimoto (PAC) defeated Agarycheva and Palmer (WU), 8-5
#2 - Wong and Mizuno (PAC) defeated Morrison and Slonaker (WU), 8-2
#3 - Katie Huber and Bee (WU) defeated Velligas and Michelle Soga (PAC), 8-2

Willamette University concluded the dual match season at 12-9 overall.
Pacific University concluded the season at 6-14 overall.

Willamette University 5
Pacific University 2
NWC Tournament - 5th Place Match
Natalia Agarycheva defeated Cat Goya at #1 singles, 6-1, 6-7 (6-8), 6-2.

Natalia Agarycheva defeated Cat Goya at #1 singles, 6-1, 6-7 (6-8), 6-2.