Whit women nail down third in tennis standings

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WALLA WALLA -- Nailing down third place in the final Northwest Conference women's tennis standings, Whitman College outpointed visiting Willamette 7-2 Sunday morning on the Missionaries' outdoor campus courts.

Whitman, which finished the regular season with records of 12-4 in the NWC and 14-8 overall, gets the No. 3 seed in the upcoming conference tournament.

Willamette, which lost 6-3 to Whitman earlier this season in Salem, concluded its regular season with records of 10-6 and 11-8. The Bearcats get the No. 4 seed in the postseason tournament, which is set for Friday and Saturday at the Yakima Tennis Club.

The winner of the tournament earns the NWC's automatic berth in the NCAA Division III national championship tournament.

Sunday's match was the final home competition for Whitman seniors Hadley DeBree and Divneet Kaur, two mainstays in the Missionary line-up for the past four seasons.

DeBree and Kaur helped Whitman take an early 2-1 lead after doubles with an 8-4 victory over Alyssa Morrison and Fabi Dieguez at No. 2. The Missionary duo erased a 4-3 deficit by winning five straight games.

As doubles partners this season, Kaur and DeBree are 13-2, which includes a 9-0 mark against NWC opponents.

Whitman also won at No. 1 doubles, where junior Elise Otto and first-year Missionary Alyssa Roberg handed down an 8-6 verdict against Willamette's Natalia Agarycheva and Shannon Palmer.

The Bearcats gobbled up a doubles point at No. 3, where Katie Huber and Emily Bee posted an 8-6 victory over first-year Missionary Kate Kunkel-Patterson and sophomore Emily Rolston.

Kaur and DeBree, Whitman's two seniors, also were winners in singles as Whitman took three of the first four decisions to clinch the team victory.

Kaur was first off the courts with a 6-0, 6-0 victory at No. 4 singles. Kaur, who played most of her singles matches this season in the No. 3 and No. 4 slots, is now 18-5 on the year, which includes a 15-2 record against conference foes.

The next match to finish came at No. 1, where Agarycheva momentarily trimmed Whitman's lead in the team scoring to 3-2 with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Roberg.

After Otto made it 4-1 Whitman with a 6-2, 6-2 win at No. 2 singles, DeBree scored the clinching fifth point with a 6-3, 7-5 victory over Huber at No. 3.

Whitman added to its victory margin with wins at No. 6, where Kunkel-Patterson didn't lose a game, and at No. 5, where Rolston outlasted Morrison 6-4, 1-6, 10-7.



SINGLES -- Natalie Agarycheva, Will, def. Alyssa Roberg, Whit, 6-2, 6-4; Elise Otto, Whit, def. Shannon Palmer, Will, 6-2, 6-2; Hadley DeBree, Whit, def. Katie Huber, Will, 6-3, 7-5; Divneet Kaur, Whit, def. Fabi Dieguez, Will, 6-0, 6-0; Emily Rolston, Whit, def. ALyssa Morrison, Will, 6-4, 1-6, 1-0 (10-7); Kate Kunkel, Whit, def. Jamie Slonaker, Will, 6-0, 6-0.

DOUBLES -- Otto-Roberg, Whit, def. Palmer-Agarycheva, Will, 8-6; DeBree-Kaur, Whit, def. Morrison-Dieguez, Will, 8-4; Huber-Emily Bee, Will, def. Kunkel-Rolston, Whit, 8-6.

Team Scores -- Whitman 7, Willamette 2.

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