Men’s Tennis stunned by Kingsmen 5-4

Men’s Tennis stunned by Kingsmen 5-4

Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com

WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College Men's Tennis team entered the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Championships as the No. 4 seed but couldn't get through the first round as they were upset by Cal Lutheran University 5-4.

It was a home match for the Purple & Gold in the 4 vs. 5 match-up.  The previous time these two teams met was back on March 4 where Whittier came out on top 6-3.

But this time around it came down to the final match at No. 6, which went to a third set.  Senior Troy Chavez (Temecula, Calif.) had the opportunity to send the Poets to the semi-final but couldn't hold a set lead as he would fall 7-6 (3), 4-6, 4-6. 

Whittier came out of doubles leading 2-1 getting wins at No. 1 and No. 2.  Andrew You (Arcadia, Calif.) and Thomas Koszowski (Denver, CO) put together a strong win at the top spot beating Kashani and Haffner 8-4.  The match was level at 1-1 after CLU pulled out an 8-5 win at No. 3 over Chris Palacio (El Centro, Calif.) and Chavez forcing the No. 2 match-up into the go ahead point. 

This went the distance as junior transfers Hunter Kettering (Pleasanton, Calif.) and Elmer Van Butselaar (Veenendaal, Netherlands) would pull out the win in a breaker 9-8 (5) moving the score to 2-1.

The Poets extended their lead to 4-1 after You made quick work of Ransom Braaten 6-2, 6-3, while Van Butselaar held off Lucas Tilly at No. 3 6-0, 7-5.  But those would be the final points added by WC as the Kingsmen would rally to pick up the next four points for the come from behind victory.

CLU started their comeback with a win at No. 2 as T. Koszowski fell to Kashani 6-3, 6-3.  They picked up their third point quickly after that as Kettering went down against Haffner 6-4, 6-3, while Palacio was edged in three sets at No. 5, despite coming back from a set down against Mike Sulahian, which leveled the match at 4-4. 

It came down to Chavez at No. 6 who led in the match winning the first set 7-6 (3), before getting broken once in each frame after that as Austin Wong picked up his biggest win of his career.                 

Whittier waits to see if they continue with their Championship as the inclement weather has called a halt in the back-draw matches.