Westmont Men’s and Women’s Tennis hosted the Mariners of Marymount in Santa Barbara on Saturday and both Warrior clubs came away with convincing wins. On the women’s side of things, the Warriors (8-10, 6-2 GSAC) defeated the Mariners 4-0, and on the men’s side, the Warriors (6-9, 6-2 GSAC) blanked Marymount 5-0.
In the late morning the Westmont and Marymount women kicked off the day with doubles, and the Mariners challenged the Warriors quickly with a 6-0 win on court one. Then, the Warriors responded with 7-5 and 6-3 wins on court two.
The highlight of doubles play came on court two, where Emily Peterson and Francesca Aguirre came back from a 4-2 and a 5-4 deficit to win it 7-5.
In singles, there would be no further drama. On two, Aguirre came away with a quick 6-0, 6-2 win and on three, Christine Hemry posted a similar score with a 6-0, 6-3 victory.
Logan Jackson’s 6-1, 6-2 win on six was all the Warriors needed to clinch the match 4-0.
The true highlight of the day for the women’s team was the celebration of their seniors following the win. With tears in their eyes, the Warriors celebrated and embraced Peterson, Hemry, Rachal Jackson, and Sidney Lowry.
“It was a special day,” said Westmont Women’s Tennis associate head coach Cade Pierson. “Senior day is always special, but also difficult in certain ways. The story of our team is overcoming challenges and I think we did that really well today.
“There is so much I could say about this senior class. As a group, they have all grown so much in their time here. They came in as incredible women, and are leaving as even more incredible young women. We have been blessed with a senior class that is so well-connected. They’re leaving our program better than when they arrived.”
An emotional Pierson, who has both played alongside and coached her seniors, had more to share about the group as individuals.
“Christine graduating in three years is an amazing testament to her ability to balance both tennis and academics,” shared Pierson. “Rachal and Sid as captains have both grown so much from their freshman years. They went from five and six to Rachal playing at one and both being leaders on this team.
“For Emily, it’s been wonderful to see her come back to the team this year and get closure. It’s been such a joy to have these women be a part of our program. It has been an honor and a privilege to play alongside them and now coach them.”
On the men’s side, the Mariners did not have enough players to compete on three in doubles. Regardless, needing only a point to clinch the match’s first point, the Warriors took both matches on one and two. On one, Logan Thompson and Ethan Ha won 6-1, and on two, Joseph Hemry and Owen Vander Ark won 6-0.
In singles, Vander Ark continued his successful day with a 6-1, 6-0 win on three, and on two, Ha swept his opponent 6-0, 6-0. Due to the fact that Marymount forfeited matches on five and six, the Warriors clinched the match rather quickly.
“It’s always good to get a win, even though their team was undermanned,” said Westmont head coach Mark Basham. “We’re excited to get on a flight tomorrow and head to Phoenix. Hopefully our best matches of the year are still ahead of us.”
The men also celebrated a pair of seniors on Saturday, Joseph Hemry and Trevor Stephens.
“It was nice to honor both Joseph and Trevor,” shared Basham. “It’s been great having Joseph back on the team and been great to see him really enjoying it and doing well. Trevor didn’t get to play this year because of some health issues, but it was great getting to honor him as well.”
Both the men and women will fly out to Phoenix, Arizona tomorrow and make the drive out to Surprise in preparation for the GSAC Tournament. Both teams begin play in the quarterfinals on Tuesday, with the women’s match beginning at 9:00 a.m., and the men’s beginning at 12:30 p.m.
Jacob Norling is the sports information assistant at Westmont College.