SPOKANE, Wash. – Whitworth pushed nationally-ranked Lewis & Clark before falling 6-3 to the defending Northwest Conference champions in a women's tennis match on Sunday afternoon.
Bella Hoyos picked up perhaps the most impressive singles victory of her career for the Pirates, who fell to 0-3 overall and 0-2 in the NWC.
L&C, ranked 18th in the ITA Division III national poll and third in the west region, improved to 3-0.
The Pioneers took a 2-1 lead in doubles. Emma Jo Wiley and Jennifer Adams gave Whitworth an early lead with an 8-1 win over Josie Legarza and Carla Thomas at #2 doubles. Natasha Hood and Chloe Sermet beat Whitworth's Emily Sandquist and Erica Lee 8-4 at #3 doubles to tie the match. Then Wiktoria Plawska and Kacey Incerpi, the #8 doubles team in the west region, topped Hoyos and Paige Rohrbach 8-3 at #1 doubles.
Hoyos faced off against Plawska at #1 singles. Plawska was ranked third in the west region through the fall season after she won the Northwest ITA tournament. But Hoyos rolled to a 6-3, 6-1 win over Plawska to pull the Pirates to within 4-2.
Earlier in singles Legarza defeated Wiley 6-0, 6-0 at #2 and Incerpi beat Adams 6-2, 6-0 at #3 to increase L&C's lead to 4-1.
Hood clinched the team win for the Pioneers with a 6-2, 6-0 win over Rohrbach at #5. Lee gave Whitworth its final point with a 6-2, 6-4 victory over Sermet at #4 singles.
The closest match of the day was also the final match to finish. Thomas held on to edge Sandquist 7-6 (10-3), 6-4 at #6 singles.
Whitworth will play its next match on Saturday at Whitman next Saturday afternoon.