By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Willamette University won #1 and #2 doubles, and then put together a string of wins from #2 singles through #6 singles, to down George Fox University 7-2 in a non-conference match at the Salem Tennis and Swim Club on Wednesday, Feb. 21. The Bearcats advanced their record to 3-1 on the season, while George Fox dropped to 2-2.
"I think we came out a little nervous, but honestly we didn't panic," Willamette Head Coach Bryce Parmelly said. "The fun par was seeing the girls play better and better as the match progressed. We looked physically sg\trong and mentally tough. I am so proud of this team and today's effort, top to bottom."
At #1 doubles, Mikaila Smith (Sr., Mill Valley, CA/Tamalpais HS) and Robin Pashek (Fr., The Dalles, OR/The Dalles-Wahtonka HS) of Willamette rolled to an 8-3 victory against GFU's team of Catrina Kwong and Kristen Mock. In #2 doubles action, WU's combo of Sarah Dean (Fr., Boise, ID/Timberline HS) and Sylvia Marr (Fr., Grants Pass, OR/Hidden Valley HS) edged out Jillian Studer and Lydia Pia of the Bruins in a tie-breaker, 9-8 (7-5).
At #3 doubles, the Bruins earned a win as Laney Search and Sophia Lawrence downed Siena Ginsburg (Fr., Bend, OR/Summit HS) and Alexis Gjurasic (Jr., Olympia, WA/Capital HS) of WU, 8-1. Willamette led 2-1 entering the singles competition.
Kwong won a hard-fought, close match for the Bruins versus Smith at #1 singles in a super tie-breaker played instead of a third set. The match also featured a regular tie-breaker in each of the first two sets, as Kwong took the match, 7-6 (8-6), 6-7 (4-7), 10-3.
The Bearcats prevailed in all of the other singles matches. At the #1 position, Pashek defeated Search in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2. At #3 singles, Dean slipped past Lawrence in tie-breaker during the first set, 7-6 (7-1), before shutting out Lawrence in the second set, 6-0.
WU also claimed straight-set wins over George Fox at #4 and #5 singles. In the #4 match, Marr took a pair of close sets, 6-4, 6-4, to defeat Emily Brink. At #5 singles, Ginsburg moved past Taylor Morris, 6-3, 6-3. The Bearcats added a win at #6 singles, where Hannah Andres (Jr., Sammamish, WA/Skyline HS) outlasted Danielle Brown of GFU in a super tie-breaker, 6-4, 4-6, 10-3.
Up next for Willamette is a non-conference match against another Northwest Conference opponent, as the Bearcats will take on Lewis & Clark College on Sunday, Feb. 25 in Portland, Oregon. Match time at the L&C Tennis Dome is scheduled for 11 a.m.