Effort, Enthusiasm Remain Despite Losing Record
Though Linfield fell short on the scoreboard during a difficult season that saw the Wildcats earn just two team victories, there was no shortage of effort or enthusiasm.
Linfield sputtered to a 2-17 overall record, including a 2-10 mark in the Northwest Conference. The Wildcats defeated Puget Sound and Lewis & Clark for their only wins of the season.
Regardless of the win-loss record, the team remained focused on daily improvement.
“Our guys were committed to doing their best,” said Wildcats coach Carl Swanson. “Often when things don’t go the way you would like them, the options are to either stick with it or give up. To their credit, our players continued to work hard and finished the season together.”
Linfield’s top doubles tandem of Cody Levien and Zach Lyons provided the lion’s share of bright moments for the ‘Cats. Together, the two upperclassmen went 11-6, each earning honorable mention all-conference consideration.
Perhaps the high point of the season came on a five-match road trip to Texas, where Levien and Lyons fashioned an 8-5 victory at No. 1 doubles over a UT-Tyler tandem that was ranked fifth in the West Region.
Individually, Levien was honored as the NWC Sportsman of the Year by the conference’s nine coaches. He was one of three seniors on the club.
A group of first-year players took their lumps over the course of the season, each gaining experience for the seasons ahead. Among those who saw regular action were Luke Kleinman, Joel Trousdale, Ben Brewer and Micah Roos.
“We’ll take the lessons learned from this season and apply them to next year,” said Swanson. “Our guys are young and they are continue to try and develop their identity on the court. I felt like we made progress. It was a good group to work with.”