JAVA vs Wash U match breaker

2013 ITA Fall Nationals Doubles Semi-Final Match tiebreaker
Wash U won the first set and Whitman took the 2nd Set.

(sorry about the angle of the video — camera was clipped onto the fence

All good things must come to an end

Wow I can’t believe it has been 5 days since the ITA National finals! Also can’t believe that I didn’t write an update:( Sorry to the Whitman tennis family.

JAVA (James and Andrew) had an unbelievable, indeed a magical, run to the national championship finals. Dating back to the regional ITA tournament they won 4 consecutive matches that went to a match tie-breaker!  In fact after they lost the national championship match they were joking that they knew they were in trouble because the finals was a full third set match!

While JAVA was winning nailing biting matches their opponents from Middlebury had swept through the draw without dropping a set. In fact in the Middlebury’s previous two matches they had lost a total of 11 games (closest set was 6-3). Team JAVA was certainly battle tested going into the match but the Middlebury team was playing with a ton of confidence.

The beginning of the match was an absolutely battle — tons of long games and a lot of break opportunities. Early in the first set JAVA drew the first break and was up 4-2 with Middlebury serving. Looking back this was the critical game of the match. At 4-2 JAVA had 5 break points to go up 5-2 serving. But the Middlebury team was relentless in their serving attack — every time they need a point they bombed in a big serve or made a clutch volley. I wonder what would of happened of JAVA had capitalized on one of those break points. With a 2 break lead I think they would of closed out the 1st set putting them 1 set away form the national title. However Middlebury ended up holding and then breaking […]

By |October 17th, 2013|2013-2014 season|0 Comments

Geez..2 more match breakers?

Really speechless this evening. What an unbelievable run this fall for James and Andrew (JAVA). A week ago they won the northwest ITA/USTA doubles tournament by gutting out a 3rd set match breaker against teammates Andy Riggs and Steven Roston. Yesterday they won a tough play-in match against Trinity (was 10-2 in the 3rd set breaker).

This afternoon they played the #1 team from Skidmore. And just like their previous two matches they dropped the 1st set. And just like their last two matches they were basically deadlocked in the 2nd set before going on an amazing streak — today they were tied at 2-2 in the 2nd set when they ripped off 4 straight games to even the match at 1-set all. They ended carrying their momentum into the 3rd set breaker winning 10-4.

So JAVA has now won 3 straight matches in a 3rd set match breaker.

In the semi-finals JAVA played a very good Wash U team. And just like the early matches they dropped the 1st first set — this time 1 break 3-6. However they kept their cool, continued to compete and work hard to win the 2nd set 6-3. This match breaker really went down to the wire. We got a bit lucky at 10-10 in the tiebreak when the Wash U team made an uncharacteristic mistake. Andrew took advantage of that mistake to uncork a huge serve winning the match 3-6, 6-3, 12-10.

Java has now won 4 straight matches in a 3rd set match breaker. Coach now has much more grey in beard!

Tomorrow they get the opportunity to play for the National Doubles title against Middlebury. Match is scheduled for 215pm. As usual there will be twitter updates at #whitmantennis.

Sorry […]

By |October 10th, 2013|2013-2014 season|0 Comments

Play-in day at the ITA’s

What a whirlwind couple days. Monday after classes we left Walla Walla and drove to Portland to catch a 1040pm red-eye to Florida. By getting in somewhat early on Tuesday (10am) we had some time to hit and get used to the heat and humidity (its near 90 with pretty high humidity).

First match of the day was Andrew vs Trinity’s D1 transfer Paxton Deuel. Paxton certainly proved he is a force to be reckoned with in D3 — not only did he easily win the Texas region (I don’t think he dropped a set) but he played very steady tennis today to take down Andrew 6-2, 6-3. Andrew never really found his rhythm the entire match. But a lot of that was due to the fact the Trinity standout hit a heavy deep ball. Regardless Andrew had some chances — in the first set 5 games went to deuce and Andrew couldn’t capitalize on any of the big points (he lost all 5 of those games).

In the afternoon, it was another Whitman vs Trinity matchup as team JAVA (James and Andrew) took on the top team from Trinity. From the start JAVA was just a bit off. They were tight, easily frustrated and in general not making enough balls to give themselves a chance in the match. At 5-5 the wheels came off a bit as James was broken and Trinity held at love to take the 1st set 7-5. Plus the first game of the 2nd set Andrew was easily broken giving Trinity all the momentum at the start of the 2nd set. At one point in the set the Whitties were down a break 2-3 when JAVA FINALLY started to loosen up. Instead of being frustrated and upset they […]

A Wilderness Retreat

With the school calendar being pushed back a week everything this season seems very rushed. In past year’s I’ve always enjoyed taking the team on a backpacking or camping trip. However since we just finished our regional ITA tournament I felt it might be better to do a wilderness “retreat” vs a full-blown backpacking trip. The college owns a special wilderness area about 17 miles from campus that includes classroom space, 2 houses and numerous small cabins. Best of all its far enough into the mountains that cell phone signals don’t work!

My plan was get to the Wilderness Campus in the early evening so players could study a bit and then hang out in the evening. Unfortunately even the best plans sometimes go astray. One of the freshman who won’t be named *cough cough Parker cough cough* decided to show up an hour late for our trip. By the time we got up the Wilderness Campus it was already dark and time for dinner.

Since I knew I didn’t want to cook that night I spent most of the day cooking 2 pork shoulders to make pulled pork sandwiches (a team favorite).  I was actually surprised the guys almost completely demolished two full shoulders of pork (it’s a lot of meat!).

After dinner a few guys studied while others started into Settlers of Catan. And James decided to hit a sofa and go to sleep at 8pm. Who can blame him — cool mountain air coupled with the sound of nearby Mill Creek is enough to make anyone drift off to sleep. I shouldn’t give James too much grief since I was asleep only an hour after him.

Since the guys had destroyed the entire pulled pork I […]

ITA Wrap-up

What a fantastic past week for Whitman tennis. On Monday we had the official opening of our new courts — and boy are these courts awesome. I’ve played/coached many places and I’ve never seen such a beautiful setting for tennis. The courts were opened just in time as we were slated to host the Northwest ITA/USTA regional tournament on Friday. I had many a sleepless night wondering if the courts would be done in time for the tournament.

For the ITA /USTA regional tournament teams are assigned how many players they get into the main draw based on last year’s conference finish. As the top team in the conference we were slotted 8. However we are 13 deep this year so we had to put 5 players into qualifying. Really too bad for these players as many of them can compete with the #1’s from any team in the conference. On Friday the 5 Whitman qualifiers all ran through their qualifying matches without dropping a set (Will Huskey, James Rivers, Joey Diaz, Parker Silverman, and Jacob Christensen).

There are far too many matches to highlight but let me say the Whitman players pretty much dominated the event. In singles we had 9 of the final 16 players and all 4 singles semi-finalists. In doubles we had 4 of the final 8 teams and both finalist. It was SUCH a gratifying experience to see all the men on the Whitman team battle (and defeat) the top players from the other schools. One of the best moments of the weekend was Sunday morning when, about the same time, Whitman players knocked off higher seeds in three sets — freshman Petar Jivkov won had a wonderful match against one […]

By |October 3rd, 2013|2013-2014 season|1 Comment

James Rivers gets the yellow jersey

This week again had a lot of nominations for the yellow jersey — Steven, Andrew, Nasko, Jake, and Petar, but James gets the yellow jersey for the week. Way to go James!

James Rivers — Yellow Jersey April 30, 2013

Congratulations to James for being voted the yellow jersey!

Yellow Jersey for March 4, 2013..

James Rivers! James was the overwhelming nominee for the yellow jersey this week. James was cleared to start practicing with the team and has been a bundle of positive energy. Teammates also noted that even while out of practice, James was coming to the conditioning sessions and practices (even though he couldn’t play). Never easy to be out with an injury and James handled the situation beautifully.

Fall rankings are out

Preseason rankings are out:
Whitman #13 nationally and #6 in the West
Colton Malesovas #10 Nationally #3 in West

Andrew La Cava #10 in the West

Andy Riggs #13 in the West
Andrew La Cava/James Rivers #2 Nationally #1 in West

Matt Tesmond/Andy Riggs #6 in West

Steven Roston/Noah Lee #13 in West



By |November 5th, 2012|2012-2013 season|1 Comment