Bearcats Fall to Nationally-Ranked Lewis-Clark State, 9-0

Cooper, Schreiber Fall Just Short at #3 Doubles

By Timothy Walsh, Assistant Athletics Communications Director

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University opened a stretch of three matches in three days with a 9-0 loss to non-conference opponent Lewis-Clark State College in a men's tennis match on Friday, March 8, at the Courthouse Tennis Center.

L-C State, ranked #13 in the most recent NAIA Tennis Coaches’ Top 25 poll, improved its record to 4-1. The Warriors' only loss came against NCAA Division I opponent Gonzaga University.

The Bearcats, who compete in NCAA Division III, dropped to 2-5 on the year.

L-C State jumped out to an early lead by winning all three doubles matches, though Willamette's top doubles pair of Joshua Wong (Sr., Hilo, HI/Hilo HS) and Sam Wexman (Fr., Tiburon, CA/Gamiscal HS) put up a stiff challenge at the #1 position before falling, 8-5.

The competition was even closer at #3 doubles, where WU's Will Cooper (Jr., Gresham, OR/Centennial HS) and Jack Schreiber (So., Solana Beach, CA/The Grauer School) nearly toppled the Warriors' Quentin Wacquez and Alberto Sanz. Wacquez and Sanz eventually earned a 9-7 victory.

While not winning any of the singles matches, the Bearcats did gain valuable experience and depth. Shrujan Kalidindi (Fr., Cupertino, CA/Monta Vista HS) made his singles debut for Willamette, while Blake Brash (Fr., Boise, ID/Boise HS) and Gunnar Lee (Fr., Hilo, HI/St. Joseph School) made just their second singles appearances of the year.

Brash, in particular, made a competitive showing at the #5 spot, falling 6-4, 6-3 to Sanz.

Colin Yamaguchi (Fr., Damascus, OR/Clackamas HS) made his first appearance at #3 singles in the Bearcats' shuffled lineup, while Cooper and Wexman took over the #2 and #1 positions, respectively.

Wong, normally Willamette's #1 singles player, did not compete in the singles matches, nor did fellow singles regulars Devin Abney (So., Shoreline, WA/Shorecrest HS/Univ. of Redlands) and Mathew Dees (Fr., Henderson, NV/Coronado HS). Abney did compete alongside Lee at #2 doubles, however.

Willamette next faces its first Northwest Conference opponent of the weekend, hosting the University of Puget Sound on Saturday, March 9. The start of the match is scheduled for 12 p.m. (PST) at the Willamette University Tennis Courts.

In the event of inclement weather, the match will be held at the Courthouse Tennis Center (1379 Madison St. NE), with the same start time.

BOX SCORE

Lewis-Clark State College 9
Willamette University 0 

Willamette's Jack Schreiber teamed with Will Cooper to give NAIA powerhouse Lewis-Clark State its toughest match of the day at #3 doubles.

Willamette's Jack Schreiber teamed with Will Cooper to give NAIA powerhouse Lewis-Clark State its toughest match of the day at #3 doubles.