Congratulations to James for being voted the yellow jersey!
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.
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
Well all good things must come to an end and unfortunately JAVA’s run at a National Championship came up a bit short. In the finals they play well and had chances against the talented Williams team. In the end the purple cows were a bit too strong winning 7-6, 6-3. We did, however, have chances in the first set — we were up a break at 4-2 and in the tiebreak had a set point at 6-5 (serving). Can’t even begin to explain how proud I am of James and Andrew. They are first team or individual at Whitman that has played for a national championship since Chris Gregersen lost in the D3 finals in 1987. Great effort guys!
Click the photo below to open a slide show from the weekend.
Beaverton, Ore.- Playing with a sense of purpose after being denied the singles title they coveted, Whitman’s Andrew La Cava (Bellevue, WA) and James Rivers (Honolulu, HA) trounced their way to the USTA/ITA Fall Regional Northwest doubles on Monday with an impressive 6-0, 6-2 victory over teammates Matt Tesmond (Cincinnati, OH) and Andy Riggs(Auburn, CA).
After both Rivers and La Cava got eliminated from singles competition on Sunday morning, they played with frightening intensity in their quarterfinal and semifinal matches, notching a pair of 8-1 victories. Having a night to brood on their singles defeats did nothing to diminish their motivation. With the tournament championship on the line, the two Missionaries swarmed all over the court, pounced on even the best returns from Riggs and Tesmond, crushed any attempt at a defensive lob, and hit explosive returns in a first set that lasted no more than twenty minutes.
Tesmond, a defending champion, and Riggs didn’t go down without a fight, though. After surrendering two early breaks in the first set, they spent the latter part of the set experimenting with different strategies, trying to find something that would allow them to respond in the second. Early in the second, it looked like they might have found an answer. They won the first game of the second set by saving half a dozen break points in a long Riggs service game. After a quick Rivers hold, they fended off another three break points with Tesmond serving, and had chances to seize the game and momentum, but Rivers uncorked two gargantuan backhand returns to earn the break.
Tesmond and Riggs didn’t dwell long on that disappointment, immediately responding by breaking La Cava’s service to level the second set at 2-2. When they jumped out to a […]
Over the weekend we capped off a perfect NWC season by sweeping the NWC Mens Tennis Tournament without a dropping a set. On Saturday we defeated Whitworth 5-0 and on Sunday in front of a large boisterous crowd we defeated George Fox 5-0. The victory over Fox was especially sweet for the team as earlier in the year we defeated Fox 6-3 and were down 1-2 after the doubles. Yesterday we knew it would be key to get off to a fast start and enter the singles with a lead. At #3 doubles James Rivers and Sam Sadeghi came out on fire and put us on the board first with a quick 8-1 victory. This was especially gratifying for Sam and James as earlier in the year they lost to the same doubles team 8-1. At #2 doubles Jeff Tolman and Andrew La Cava started slow and were down a break at 3-4 before winning the next 5 games. And at #1 Conor Holton-Burke and Matt Tesmond gave us a sweep of the doubles with a solid 8-5 victory. This was the same team that beat them 8-5 earlier in the year.
In singles Jeff got off to a slow start going down 0-2 (and down break points) before finding his rhythm and winning 11 straight games! His 6-2, 6-1 victory not only put us up 4-0 but was his 100 career victory — welcome to the Century Club! Senior Conor Holton-Burke sealed the match for us with a wonderful 6-2, 6-0 match. Earlier in the year Conor lost to the same opponent in three sets. What a sweet day for the senior– his match seals the the NWC tournament and he defeats they only NWC […]
Freshman James Rivers was recently recognized as honorable mention for West Region Player of the Week by division3tennis.com. The link to the complete story can be found here.
Congratulations to James!
What an interesting start to a match. At 4pm the weather was beautiful — highs in the 60′s and clear blue skies. However as the match progressed Mother Nature decided to get into the act and kicked in some high winds. You know the wind is bad when you need to pick up twigs and broken branches off the court on change-overs. The wind certainly added to the excitement of #3 doubles as Steven Roston and Will Huskey played one of the more thrilling tiebreaks I have witnessed. In the end the PLU #3 got the upper hand winning 14-12 in the tie-breaker! As a team we managed to gain a 2-1 lead after the doubles with Matt and Conor winning 8-6 at #1 and Andrew and James winning 8-1 at #2.
With the gutsy winds and drop in temperature we decided to move the singles indoors. Our past weekends of intense competition have certainly sharpened everyone’s game as we cruised through the match without dropping a set. Singles match of the day goes to Will Huskey who overcame a break in the 2nd set to win 7-5, 7-6.
Interesting stat of the day — Conor now sits at 98 wins! Today when we play UPS he has a chance to join the exclusive Whitman Tennis Century Club! Looks like high winds will force our 1pm match against UPS indoors. Those in Walla Walla should drop by the courts to watch us try to knock down the Loggers.
Whitman 8 PLU 1
Conor Holton-Burke/Matt Tesmond def Ah Yat/Dickey 8-6
James Rivers/Andrew La Cava def Cotton/Olson 8-1
Steven Roston/Will Huskey lost Berg/Herron 9-8 (14-12)
Conor Holton-Burke def Ah Yat 6-4, 6-3
James Rivers def Cotton 6-2, 6-2
Adriel Borshansky def Dickey 6-1, 6-0
Steven Roston […]
Sorry for the delay in getting to this post but the past couple days have been a whirlwind. After a long day of travel we are safely back on campus and ready for classes. All the guys on the team should be ready for early classes this week — after a week of trying to set our biologic clocks to east coast time and spending a few days on the east coast everyone should be wide awake early this morning! This past week has given me an appreciation for athletes that constantly travel across time zones and are able to maintain a peak level of performance.
On Sunday we started our match against Mary Washington at 11:30am. I’m sure the extra couple hours of sleep and playing at more “normal” time had something to do with our high level of play. Even though we spent the previous week practicing at 6:30am in hopes of getting a head start on the time change it wasn’t quite the same as being up early to eat breakfast, warm-up and starting matches at 6am (pacific time). On Saturday we started our day at 3:45am pacific time!
I believe during the Mary Washington match I tweeted “the match was awesome” and it was an awesome match. In fact several times Coach Todd Hebling and I would meet between courts and chat about the high level and intensity of the play. This is the type of match I would love to play every week– great play, physical points, outcome in doubt and each player/team making each other better.
Doubles was a close affair up and down the line-up. Fortunately for us at #1 Conor and Matt finally found their groove midway through the pro-set […]