Sophie Whittle defeated Marie Mateas of Duke 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 to win the main women’s singles draw at the ITA/Riviera All-American Championships on Sunday and become Gonzaga’s first ITA national champion.
Whittle, a senior from Nipomo, California, won eight matches in five days, including three over top-15 ranked opponents.
After winning three matches in qualifying she defeated four ranked opponents in the main draw to reach the final.
“I couldn’t have done this without my teammates, coaches and trainers,” Whittle said in a school press release. “I’m just so happy. This will put Gonzaga on the map, and we’ll just keep getting better as a program. I’m just so excited about that.”
The victory qualifies Whittle for the Oracle ITA Fall National Championships Nov. 7-11 in Surprise, Arizona.
No. 22 Washington State (13-3, 4-2 Pac-12) won its fourth consecutive match, defeating No. 21 Arizona 20-25, 22-25, 25-23, 25-20, 15-13 in Tucson, Arizona.
McKenna Woodford had 18 kills and Taylor Mims and Ella Jajos 17 each. Ashley Brown posted a career-high in assists with 59, along with 11 digs.
Tied at 13 in the final set, Woodford had a kill with a block from Jocelyn Urias and Woodford sealing the win.
The Wildcats fell to 14-4, 3-3.
Holly Daugirda scored in the ninth minute of overtime to give Utah (6-6-1, 3-2-0 Pac-12) a 1-0 win over seventh-ranked Washington State (10-2, 3-2) in Salt Lake City.
It was the first match this season in which the Cougars failed to score despite outshooting the Utes 9-8 with four on target.
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