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Locally: Gonzaga’s Sophie Whittle named WCC women’s tennis Player of the Year

UPDATED: Sat., April 27, 2019

Gonzaga tennis player Sophie Whittle is the first Bulldogs player in history to be crowned an ITA national champion. The victory qualified her for the Oracle ITA Fall National Championships in early November. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga tennis player Sophie Whittle is the first Bulldogs player in history to be crowned an ITA national champion. The victory qualified her for the Oracle ITA Fall National Championships in early November. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Sophie Whittle, as she did much of the season on the court, cleaned up when the West Coast Conference honored its women’s tennis players.

The Gonzaga senior, who had a stint as the nation’s No. 1 ranked player earlier in the spring and won the ITA All-American Championship, was named the WCC Player of the Year and earned first-team All-WCC honors for a third straight season in singles and doubles, the latter with senior Graciela Rosas. Rosas was an All-WCC second-team singles selection.

Whittle, No. 10 in the Oracle/Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings last week, set a school record with 27 singles victories this season, going 8-3 against ranked opponents. She’s 27-6 overall. She and Rosas, who have a 19-3 record, are ranked No. 23 nationally in doubles.

College scene

For the third time in her career, Idaho senior Sophie Hausmann will play in an NCAA Regional golf tournament.

Hausmann, the two-time reigning Big Sky Conference Player of the Year with a 72.2 scoring average, received an individual invitation to the regional at Tumble Creek Golf Club in Cle Elum, Washington, May 6-8. Her previous two appearances, in 2016 and 2018, came when the Vandals advanced as a team.

At No. 56 in the latest GolfStat National Player Rankings, Hausmann is the highest-ranked individual at any of the four regional sites. Top-ranked Southern California is the top-seeded team in Cle Elum with 18th-ranked Washington seeded fifth.

Quynn Duong of Gonzaga, who had a team-best five top-10 finishes in nine events, was named the WCC women’s golf Freshman of the Year and was named to the 10-woman All-WCC team.

Duong had three runner-up finishes among her four top-five finishes and had a 72.85 scoring average that set a program single-season record, nearly a half-stroke better than the previous mark. She placed sixth in the WCC Championships at Manito Golf & Country Club last weekend.

• Idaho’s Colt Sherrell was named Big Sky Conference Freshman of the Year in men’s golf while senior teammate Enrique Marin was named to the All-Big Sky first team for a second straight season.

Sherrell, an All-Big Sky second-team selection, played some of his best golf down the stretch and finished with a 74.0 scoring average.

Marin, who was on the second team in 2017, has a team-best 72.7 scoring average and top-25 finishes in eight of the Vandals’ nine tournaments, including tying for fifth at the Husky Invitational in the fall.

Claire Ratcliff, a Pacific University junior from Mt. Spokane, was named to the 2019 All-Northwest Conference Women’s Rowing Team after the two-year letterwinner led the Boxers to a fifth-place finish at the NWC Championships.

“Claire has really stepped up into a leadership role this year both on and off the water,” said second-year coach Karolyn Milton. “She has pushed herself and her teammates to make some huge gains. In fact, she has the fastest 2k time on record for the program and is a big reason our team average is also getting faster.”

• Whitworth dominated the NWC weekly track and field awards, capturing three of the four.

Sophomore Rhett Streeter was the men’s track athlete of the week after he raced to a 10.93-second victory in the 100-meter dash at the Whitworth Twilight meet, the second-best time in the NWC, and had a career-best 22.56 in the 200. Men’s field honors went to junior , whose 15-foot, 5-inch pole vault at the same meet is tops in the NWC.

Senior Kameha Medallada earned the women’s track award for posting victories in the 100 (12.34) and 200 (25.75) , both top-10 times in the NWC.

• For the second time in three weeks, Shamrock Campbell, a Carroll College freshman from Ferris, is the Frontier Conference Men’s Outdoor Field Athlete of the Week after he won the triple jump at the MSU Open in Bozeman, with an NAIA A-Standard qualifying jump of 48-2 1/2.

• Freshman James Mwaura shattered the Gonzaga men’s 10,000-meter program record, running 29:15.75 in winning the event at the Cardinal Classic on April 20. The old mark of 29:37.53 was set earlier this season by junior Peter Hogan.

• Junior Sam Feit collected two first-team honors to lead a trio of Gonzaga men’s tennis players named to All-WCC teams.

Feit was first-team singles and first-team doubles with senior Ruadhan O’Sullivan, who was on the singles honorable mention list along with junior teammate Vincent Rettke. Feit, who was honorable mention in 2018, had a 24-8 record in singles, including 8-1 against WCC opponents. He and O’Sullivan, All-WCC second team in singles in 2018, had a 21-9 record.

• Whitworth junior Erica Lee is a 2019 All-NWC first-team selection in women’s tennis and sophomore Avery Liening is on the second team.

Lee, a second-team choice in 2018, played No. 1 singles for the second straight year, compiling an 8-6 record, including 4-3 against NWC opponents. She was 11-5 at No. 1 doubles. Liening was 9-7 at No. 2 singles, 6-2 against NWC foes. She also had a 9-7 record in doubles.

• After an unbeaten weekend – two singles wins and two at No. 1 doubles – Eastern Washington sophomore Rylee Braeden was named the Big Sky Conference Women’s Tennis Singles Player of the Week.

It was the first weekly award for Braeden and the first for an Eagle since 2015. She teamed with freshman Madeline Lamoreaux for a 9-1 record in Big Sky play at the No. 1 spot. Braeden had a 5-5 singles record playing at No. 2 and No. 3.

• Gonzaga’s Simon Homedes Dualde and Emilio Moreno were named the WCC men’s tennis Doubles Team of the Week after they won the final three games in 6-4 victory that clinched the doubles point in the Bulldogs’ 4-1 WCC win over Portland.

Drea Schwaier-Wolf, Whitworth’s freshman right-hander, was the NWC Softball Pitcher of the Week after she went 3-0 in two starts and a relief appearance against Pacific and posted a 1.05 ERA in 20 innings in four games. She has a 16-3 record and leads the NWC with a 2.16 ERA.

• North Idaho College sophomore outfielder Jori Kerr, who capped a week in which she batted .529 with a game-deciding, ninth-inning home run as the No. 3-ranked Cardinals knocked off No. 2 Mt. Hood 5-3, was named the Northwest Athletic Conference softball Player of the Week.

Kerr’s week included two doubles, a triple, three home runs and 10 RBIs. That win helped NIC leapfrog Mt. Hood into second in the NWC rankings.

• Lewis-Clark State sophomore Riley Way, whose week included batting .700 and stealing three bases, was named the Cascade Collegiate Conference Baseball Player of the Week.

The Lewiston native tied for the team lead with seven hits in three games – he was 7 for 10 with two three-hit games – drove in four runs and scored three. His total included four extra-base hits, including a pair of home runs. The three stolen bases improved his team-leading total to 12.

Alec Hoover, a junior at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland from Mt. Spokane, was named a National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III Scholar All-American for a second straight season with a 3.96 GPA as an economics and math double major.

His 29-10 season was capped with an eighth-place regional finish at 133 pounds. He also shared the school’s scholar-athlete award.

Twin brother Andrew Hoover, who had a 19-17 record at 141 pounds, was one of three Case Western representatives to the 2019 NCAA Student-Athlete Leadership Forum earlier this month.

Letters of intent

Idaho men’s basketball: Bruce “BJ” Simmons, guard, Trinity Valley (Texas) Community College.


North Idaho College will hold its annual Athletics Awards Banquet Saturday in the Edminster Student Union Building. A social will begin at 5 p.m., followed by dinner at 5:30 and award presentations at 6.

Male and female academic and athletic award winners, team of the year and Booster Club Member of the Year are among the honors that will be handed out.

Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at the NIC athletics department office.

Info: (208) 769-3348, or

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