Whitman tennis wins 64th NWC match in a row

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WALLA WALLA - Posting its eighth shutout of the spring season, the Whitman College men's tennis team blanked Pacific University 9-0 Friday afternoon in the Bratton Tennis Center.

With its 8-1 victory over visiting Linfield on Saturday, the team clinched at least a share of the Northwest Conference title and nailed down the top seed at the post-season tournament later this month.

Whitman rose to No. 21 earlier this week in the latest NCAA DIII national rankings.

Prior to Friday's match, Whitman coach Jeff Northam honored the seven seniors on his roster who have yet to drop a regular season decision to an NWC team in their four years at Whitman.

After Whitman won all three matches in doubles to put Pacific in an early hole, six seniors completed the sweep with straight-set victories in singles. The only senior who didn't play Friday was Jake Cappel, who is nursing an injury.

Matt Solomon paced the Whitman rout with a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Michael Okada at No. 1 singles. Solomon and junior teammate Etienne Moshevich were winners at No. 1 doubles, beating Spencer Hing and Patrick Kinghorn by an 8-2 count.

Christoph Fuchs, another of the Whitman seniors, got past Hing 6-4, 6-3 at No. 2 singles and teamed with junior Quin Miller for an 8-5 victory over Okada and Eric Furuya at No. 2 doubles.

Nadeem Kassam was Whitman's senior winner at No. 3 singles, where he dispatched Furuya 6-1, 6-3. Kassam and freshman Jeff Tolman posted an 8-2 triumph at No. 3 doubles against Pacific's Hector Alcayde and Scott Kawamura.

Completing Whitman's senior slam in singles were Jasper Follows at No. 4, Thomas Roston at No. 5 and David Deming at No. 6.

Downing Linfield for the second time this season, Whitman elevated its NWC record to 14-0 (16-4 overall).

Solomon, Fuchs and Kassam led the charge Saturday against Linfield, winning decisions in both singles and doubles.

Solomon, who rolled to a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Mark Magdaong at No. 1 singles, teamed with junior Etienne Moshevich for an 8-5 win over Magdaong and Brent Kingzett at No. 1 doubles.

Fuchs and Kassam anchored the lower end of the singles ladder with straight-set wins.

Whitman also got a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Moshevich at No. 3 singles.

The two sides split three-set battles in the other two matches in singles. Tolman won at No. 2 by a 6-2, 6-7 (7-2), 10-4 count, but Kingzett rallied past Whitman junior Chris Bailey 3-6, 6-3, 10-6 to salvage a team point for the Wildcats.

Whitman plays its final regular season matches next weekend at Whitworth.

Saturday's triumph stretches Whitman's NWC regular season winning streak to 64 matches.

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