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Pacific tennis opens with sweep, former viking making waves

Pacific tennis opens with sweep

The Pacific men's tennis team had a chance to slay a demon in the opening match of the season and they did so with ruthless precision. A loss to Puget Sound kept the Boxers out of third place in the Northwest Conference last year, and they came into 2012 with no intention of having that happen again.

The Boxers blanked the Loggers 9-0 on Sunday by winning every individual match in straight sets to open the season with an impressive conference win.

A healthy Spencer Hing showed that he is ready to make a run at No. 1 singles. Beginning the season in the No. 2 slot, Hing defeated Scott Finkleman 6-0, 6-0, avenging a loss from 2011. Newcomer Brandon Schlack also swept every game in his first college match, defeating Abe Noyes 6-0, 6-0.

While the Boxers' singles players made short work of the Loggers, the doubles matches were a different story. In their first pairing of the season, No. 1 doubles team Troy Zuroske and Giancarlo Battaglia dispatched Michael Cutter and Scott Finkleman, 8-2. But Pacific's other doubles teams had tougher battles on their hands. Kolin Wong and Hector Alcayde went to a tiebreaker, but got past Noyes and John Stevens, 9-8 (7-4) in No. 3 doubles. The No. 2 team of Hing and Scott Kawamura knocked off Ben Miller and George Murphy, 9-7.

'The energy from the double sweep carried over into singles,' said Pacific head coach Brian Jackson. 'We had one of our most dominant performances in my coaching career. All in all, it was a great day. After some early nerves in doubles, we showed some maturity and focus in singles.'

former viking making waves

Sharon Rooker, a 2011 Forest Grove High School grad and current member of the 11th-ranked Stevens Institute of Technology women's swimming team, was named the Empire 8 Swimmer of the Week earlier this month. Rooker helped the Ducks to a convincing win over conference rival Hartwick College on Feb. 4 at the De Baun Aquatic Center.

Individually, Rooker earned a win in the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 2:13.83 and she also won the 200-yard backstroke in 2:09.72. The Duck rookie was also part of two winning relays - the 200-yard medley which finished in 1:51.51 and the 400-yard freestyle that carded a 3:40.90.

It is the first time in her career that Rooker has received the honor and the fourth time this season a Stevens women's swimmer has earned the weekly recognition.

The Ducks, who have finished their dual-meet season with an overall record of 6-2, will now turn their attention to the upcoming UNYSCSA/Empire 8 Championship in Rochester, N.Y., scheduled to run from Feb. 22-25.

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