MTen: Westmont pair reach ITA national quarterfinals

FORT MEYERS, Fla. — The Westmont doubles team of Tim Goranson and John Bertram defeated Alex Haizel and Boris Peshev of St. Francis (Ill.) by scores of 6-3, 6-3 to earn a place in the doubles quarterfinals at the ITA National Small College Championships in Fort Meyers, Florida.

“The guys from St. Francis were probably a level below our guys,” assessed Westmont head coach Mark Basham. “It was good for Tim and John to get their teeth into a match after losing to Biola in the first round of the regionals. The guys they played really couldn’t hurt them in any significant way. They were scrappy and consistent, but not with the kind of power and athleticism that Tim and John have. It was a matter of Tim and John keeping their focus and playing their game.

“In the first set, Westmont broke serve the second time St. Francis served, so Tim and John went up 3-1,” reported Basham. “In the second set, Westmont didn’t break until 3-4; then Tim served it out at 5-3.”

Goranson and Bertram will face off on Thursday against Deni Zmak and Simon Felix of Embry-Riddle (Fla.) at 10:15 a.m. PDT in a quarterfinal match-up. Also competing in the doubles quarterfinals are Westmont’s Rodrigo Schaefer and Joshua Barnard who will enter play as the tournament’s number two seed. Schaefer and Barnard will take on Nicolas Pinones-Haltenhoff and Miguel Grifol from Auburn Montgomery (Ala.).

“Both of our teams are strong in doubles, so it will be interesting to see how they measure up,” said Basham.

In singles action, Goranson lost a play-in match to Pinones-Haltenhoff 6-2, 6-0 and will sit out tomorrow’s quarterfinals. Schaefer will begin singles play tomorrow against Aaron Hendrick of Aquinas (Mich.).