YAKIMA - Reaching the 20-win plateau and qualifying for nationals for a fourth consecutive season, the Whitman College men's tennis team slugged its way to a 5-1 victory over Willamette University Saturday afternoon in the finals of the Northwest Conference Championships at the Tennis Club.
Whitman, now 20-4 on the season and ranked 20th nationally, won its third straight conference title during a 16-0 NWC regular season, but it needed to win this weekend's post-season tournament to nail down an automatic berth in the NCAA Division III national championship field.
Whitman jumped to an early 2-1 lead by taking two of three matches from Willamette in the opening round of doubles.
Matt Solomon, who was named NWC Player of the Year for the second time in three seasons, teamed with Etienne Moshevich for a dominating 8-1 victory over Willamette's Josh Wong and Cody Ferguson in the No. 1 doubles match.
Jeffrey Tolman, who joined Solomon on the All-NWC First Team, joined forces with Conor Holton-Burke for an 8-5 victory over Luke Lagattuta and Michael Baumgartner at No. 3 doubles.