WHITTIER, Calif. - Winning for the eighth time in nine days, and for the second time on Sunday against a nationally-ranked foe, the Whitman College men's tennis team emptied its tank with a 5-3 victory over Connecticut's Trinity College Sunday night in Whittier, Calif.
Whitman, No. 8 in NCAA Division III, got the early jump on No. 19 Trinity by winning two of three matches in doubles.
But the Bantams won two of the first three decisions in singles to even the match at 3-3.
Whitman's Adriel Borshansky waltzed to a quick 6-2, 6-0 win over Daniel Carpenter at No. 6 to help forge that deadlock.
After Conor Holton-Burke made it 4-3 Whitman with a 6-4, 3-6, 6-1 victory over Jugal Marfatia at the No. 3 spot, James Rivers racked up the clinching fifth team point with a 6-2, 7-5 triumph over Charles McConnell at No. 4.
With the team result settled, the No. 5 singles match was left unfinished with Whitman's Sam Sadeghi leading 2-6, 6-2, 2-0 against Ned Mandel.
In the opening round of doubles, Holton-Burke and Matt Tesmond posted a 9-8 victory at No. 1, edging Anson McCook and Mandel.
Jeff Tolman and Andrew La Cava came up a game short at No. 2 doubles, losing 9-8 to Carpenter and McConnell. Sadeghi and Rivers were decisive winners at No. 3 doubles, pinning an 8-4 loss on Musyoka Mbithi and Ilya Levin.
McCook, a Trinity senior, downed La Cava 6-1, 6-4 at No. 1 singles, and Kayong Lee bested Tolman 6-4, 6-1 at No. 2.
Whitman holds a No. 1 West Region ranking while Trinity is No. 5 in the Northeast.
Earlier in the day, Whitman posted an 8-1 victory over No. 17 Whittier in a match that featured several three-set battles in singles.
The Missionaries reached a new single-season high-water mark with 13 straight victories with the win.
The Whitman-Whittier match, which took four hours and 30 minutes to complete, was scheduled for Saturday but pushed back to Sunday because of heavy rain.
After winning two of three matches in doubles, Whitman got quick wins at No. 2 and No. 5 singles to grab a 4-1 lead in the team scoring. The remaining four matches in singles all went to three sets with Whitman winning all four.
La Cava captured one of the three-set battles, outlasting Julian Seneviratne 7-6, 4-6, 6-1 at No. 1 singles, and Holton-Burke rallied for a 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory over Chris Schommer at No. 3.
Rivers bounced back from a slow start at No. 4 singles to beat Matthew Herron 0-6, 7-6, 6-4, and Borshansky survived at No. 6 with a razor-thin 6-3, 6-7, 7-6 victory over Shogo Shimizu.
Tolman had an easier time at No. 2 singles, downing Patricio Carregha 6-1, 6-4, and Sadeghi won by the same score at No. 5 at the expense of Andrew Hansen.
At No. 2 doubles, Tolman and La Cava clipped Schommer and Hansen 8-3, while Sadeghi and Rivers rolled over Herron and Shimizu 8-2 at No. 3.
Whittier salvaged a team point at No. 1 doubles, where Seneviratne and Carregha notched an 8-4 victory over Holton-Burke and Tesmond.
After a short rest, Whitman returned to the courts against Trinity.
The Trinity victory extended Whitman's winning streak to 15 matches, the last eight of which have come on the road.
Whitman, 15-3 on the season and 8-0 in the Northwest Conference, takes a break this week before resuming conference play. It is seeking its fifth straight NWC title.