Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College Men's Tennis team is in a good place Saturday picking up their second win on the season following a lopsided 8-1 win over Chapman University at the Richard Ettinger Tennis Courts.
The Poets came out firing in doubles jumping on top winning two of three. Elmer Van Butselaar (Veenendaal, Netherlands) and Thomas Koszowski (Denver, CO) made quick work of Troy Manditch and Brandin Salzberg at No. 2 winning 8-2 decisively. Jesse Eccles (Queenstown, New Zealand) and Hunter Kettering (Pleasanton, Calif.) teamed up again at No. 3 and despite being broken midway through was able to bounce back to claim the 8-5 win over Jacob Lee and Ison Da Silva.
Whittier almost pulled off the sweep as Maxwell Koszowski (Denver, CO) and Chris Palacio (El Centro, Calif.) would battle at No. 1 with Len Kamato and Matthew Mead breaking late and holding to pull within one at 7-6 but they couldn't complete the comeback as they would fall 8-6.
Leading 2-1, the Purple & Gold didn't let up with Lance Franey putting in three singles specialists in Agustin Lombardi (Argentina), Tony Zhao (Toronto, Canada), and Matt Yanuck (Studio City, Calif.). These three along with Van Butselaar, Kettering, and T. Koszowski would complete the clean sweep in singles.
Koszowski was the first off coming in with a clean sweep 6-0, 6-1 over Mead at No. 3. Kettering was next up overpowering Kamamoto 6-2, 6-0 at No. 2 and Van Butselaar would clinch the victory with a 7-6 (3), 6-0 win at No. 4.
But Whittier continued rolling with Zhao dismissing Rasanas Helms at No. 6 6-2, 6-2. Yanuck got back to his usual self with a 6-1, 6-0 rout of da Silva at No. 5 and Lombardi capped off the day with his biggest win of his career coming against four-star freshman Jacob Lee at the top spot. Lombardi rolled in the first set 6-0. He trailed throughout the second but managed to battle back with a late break that leveled the second stanza but couldn't pull out the tiebreaker falling 7-6 (5). This forced the match into a third set breaker and that's where the senior took over winning 10-4 to keep the clean sweep intact.
Whittier remains in conference play next Saturday, March 31 when they travel to Occidental College beginning at 3:00pm.