Seneviratne leads Poet to strong finish in Ojai

Seneviratne leads Poet to strong finish in Ojai

Photo by: Tony Leon/

VENTURA, Calif. – Junior Julian Seneviratne led a large contingent of Poet competitors in the Ojai Tennis Championships that took place in Ventura, Calif. over the weekend but was unable to get past the quarterfinals and the No. 1 overall seed Devin Nerenberg from UC Santa Cruz falling 6-1, 6-2.

Whittier completed the tournament having two players make it out of the first round in singles.  Seneviratne again made it to the quarterfinals for the first time in his collegiate career, while senior Patricio Carregha fell in three sets in the round of 32 to the No. 1 player from Redlands Patrick Lipscomb, falling 4-6, 6-2, 4-6 in a match that took more than 2.5 hours. 

In the previous round before that Carregha took out Cal Lutheran's Nick Jacobs in three sets after losing the first set 6-3 Carregha cruised to the 6-0, 6-0 victory in sets two and three. 

Seneviratne who came into the tournament the No. 6 overall seed had a tough road to the quarterfinals playing two three setters in back to back days the first coming against Jack Reynolds from Redlands winning 6-3, 4-6, 6-1 before taking on Bryce Bettwy from UC Santa Cruz winning 3-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Nerenberg the No. 1 overall  seed in the tournament fell in the next round after playing Seneviratne falling to his own teammate Andre Halabi who ended up losing in the finals of the Championships to Cal Lutheran's No. 1 player Nick Ballou 6-4, 6-1. 

Sophomore Andrew Hansen found a tough customer in the first round in Pomona-Pitzer's Uday Singh but fought in a two hour match falling 7-5, 6-3.  Other matches that took place in the first round included Chris Schommer who fell to Pomona-Pitzer's Frankie Allinson 6-2, 6-3, Shogo Shimizu who fell to Patrick Larsen from UC Santa Cruz 6-0, 6-4, and Matthew Herron who fell to Cal Lutheran's Thomas Millet 7-5, 6-3.

In doubles play Whittier's No. 2 team of Hansen and Schommer fell in a heartbreaker 9-8 (5) to Claremont-M-S No. 2 team of Nell Kotrappa and Brandon Wei but saw the freshman duo of Shimizu and Herron defeat Redlands No. 2 team of Nicolas Cummins and Teddy Jones 8-3 before falling in the round of 16 to the No. 2 overall seed Allinson and Max Sabel from Pomona-Pitzer 8-5. 

Carregha and Seneviratne who have impressed all season long earned the No. 5 overall seed and earned two wins, the first coming against Peter Brown and Justin McLain from George Fox by a score of 8-3 before taking out UC Santa Cruz's Bettwy and Max Littlejohn 9-7 grabbing a late break of serve.  In the quarterfinals they looked to avenge their loss to Claremont-M-S No. 1 Nicholas Marino and Warren Wood who were the No. 3 overall seed but were broke early falling 8-4. 

Whittier wraps up their 2011-12 season as the take part in the SCIAC Championships beginning tomorrow, May 4 as they take on the University of Redlands looking to avenge their previous loss in the season 5-4.