Undefeated Linfield Defeats Bearcats in Women's Tennis, 7-2

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

McMINNVILLE, ORE. -- Linfield College improved its record to 6-0 by defeating Willamette University, 7-2, in a Northwest Conference women's tennis match at the Linfield Tennis Center on Saturday, March 3. The Wildcats won two doubles matches and five singles matches on their way to the win.

The Wildcats gained their edge in doubles in part because Kaila Nip and Kiana Nip rallied from an 8-7 deficit at #2 doubles to force a tie-breaker and outlast Willamette's team of Emily Bee (Sr., Portland, OR/Lincoln HS) and Denise Poltavski (Fr., Woodland Hills, CA/El Camino Real HS), 9-8 (7-1).

WU won #1 doubles and Linfield took #3 doubles. In the #1 match, Shanon Palmer (Sr., Salem, OR/Sprague HS) and Sabrina Gutierrez (So., Newbury Park, CA/Newbury Park HS) edged out Abby Olbrich and Caroline Brigham, 8-6. At #3 doubles, Lexi Thomas and Kelly Watanabe of Linfield moved past Elise Derby (Fr., Oakdale, CA/Oakdale HS) and Hailey Arnold (Winnetka, IL/Lake Forest Academy), 8-2.

Olbrich was victorious for the Wildcats at #1 singles, as she defeated Palmer of Willamette, 6-3, 6-1. Brigham claimed the #2 singles match with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Gutierrez.

Poltavski registered Willamette's only win in singles by taking a 6-4, 6-1 triumph over Thomas.

Linfield prevailed in straight sets at #4, #5 and #6 singles, with Kaila Nip, Kiana Nip and Watanabe earning the wins, respectively.

All six of the victories for the Wildcats this spring have been in Northwest Conference action. Willamette fell to 3-3 overall, 1-3 in the NWC.

Up next for the Bearcats is a match at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash., on Friday, March 9. Match time is slated for 4 p.m. (PST).

BOX SCORE
Linfield College 7
Willamette University 2
Sabrina Gutierrez teamed with Shannon Palmer to win the #1 doubles match.

Sabrina Gutierrez teamed with Shannon Palmer to win the #1 doubles match.