Bearcats Sweep Doubles to Set Stage for 7-2 Victory over College of Idaho

Alexis Gjurasic (Sr., Olympia, WA/Capital HS)
Alexis Gjurasic (Sr., Olympia, WA/Capital HS)

By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications

SALEM, Ore. -- Willamette University won all three doubles matches -- two by large margins and one in a tie-breaker -- giving the Bearcats momentum on their way to a 7-2 win over College of Idaho at Salem Tennis and Swim Club on Saturday, March 2. The Bearcats added four wins in singles, as Willamette improved to 1-1 on the season. The Yotes dropped to 0-3.

Two of the wins for Willamette in singles were recorded in straight sets. The other two victories were earned in comebacks by Sarah Dean (So., Boise, ID/Timberline HS) at #1 singles and Alexis Schwartz (So., Ontario, OR/Ontario HS) at #6 singles, after both WU players dropped the first set.

"I'm super proud of our team," Willamette Head Coach Bryce Parmelly said. "To sweep the doubles was huge and really set the tone of the match. We continue to mature on a daily basis. We just have to keep building."

At #1 doubles, Willamette's team of Dean and Robin Pashek (So., The Dalles, OR/The Dalles-Wahtonka HS) won quickly over Alex Sorte and Natalie Little, 8-1. The Bearcats also claimed an 8-1 win at #3 doubles, as Siena Ginsburg (So., Bend, OR/Summit HS) and Hannah Andres (Sr., Sammamish, WA/Skyline HS) downed Leiana Almaraz and Taylor Little from College of Idaho. 

The most challenging match in doubles was at the #2 position, where Sylvia Marr (So., Grants Pass, OR/Hidden Valley HS) and Alexis Gjurasic (Sr., Olympia, WA/Capital HS) of Willamette edged out Marissa Shirley and Sydney Ewing, 8-7, after winning a tie-breaker 7-5.

Sorte from C of I won the first set at #1 singles against Dean, 6-3. Dean rallied to win the second set, 6-2, and take the third set, 6-3. At #6 singles, Schwartz of Willamette dropped the first set, as Ewing earned a 6-2 win. Schwartz prevailed in the second set, 6-2, then added another 6-2 win in the third set. 

Willamette's Pashek took #2 singles, 6-0, 6-1, against Shirley. Gjurasic won for the Bearcats at #5 singles against Melissa O'Berto, 6-3, 6-3.

The Yotes picked up their two wins at #3 and #4 singles. In the #3 singles match, Almaraz held of Ginsburg in both sets to win, 6-4, 7-5. Natalie Little also had to battle to defeat Marr at #4 singles, 7-5, 6-4.

Up next for the Bearcats is a two-week break from action, then Willamette will host University of Puget Sound in the Northwest Conference opener on Saturday, March 16 in Salem, Oregon.

Sarah Dean (So., Boise, ID/Timberline HS)

Big Moment of the Match for Willamette

Sarah Dean battled from behind to rally for a three-set win
over Alex Sorte at #1 singles. Sorte took the first set, 6-1,
but Dean tied things up with a 6-2 win in the second set. Dean
won the third set, 6-3. In #1 doubles, Dean and Robin Pashek
easily downed Sorte and Natalie Little, 8-1.