Tennis MBC title firmly in Tigers' grasp
The two main roadblocks to New Richmond's hopes of a Middle Border Conference girls tennis championship stood in the Tigers' way last week.
When the Tigers faced Baldwin-Woodville last Tuesday, it was a faceoff between the two undefeated leaders of the MBC. The Tigers smashed through this roadblock like a semi going 100 miles per hour, beating the Blackhawks 5-2.
That meant a win over Osceola last Thursday would likely assure the Tigers of the conference championship. The Tigers' resilience was tested even further when it was found that day that senior Laurel Hay would not be available for the match. The mental toughness of the Tigers showed as they barged past Osceola 5-2.
These two wins locked up a share of the Middle Border Conference title for the Tigers. The only thing standing in the way of the Tigers' undefeated MBC championship was a home match against Unity this Tuesday. Unity has not won a match in the conference this season.
In both of their victories last week, the Tigers swept the doubles matches. This comes after a shakeup at one doubles, where Ellen Railsback and Molly O'Flanagan were moved from singles to doubles. They faced two strong teams last week and were able to win both matches without giving up a set.
"They've developed a special chemistry," said Tiger coach Teresa Kvam of her new one doubles team.
The two doubles team of Katie Suo and Steph Anderson also scored two wins. They won handily at B-W, but lost the first set in Thursday's match against Osceola. They then stormed back to win the final two sets, 6-2, 6-3.
New Richmond's three doubles team of Jessie Meyers and Molly Heintz continues to be unbeaten in MBC matches. They had to battle to get both of their wins last week. Against B-W, they lost the first set, then battled back to win the second set 6-4. Because the first two sets had lasted so long, the coaches decided that a super tie-breaker would be played to decide the third set. Meyers and Heintz battled to win the tie-breaker, 13-11.
Against Osceola, Heintz and Meyers won the first set 6-2, then had to win the second set in a tie-breaker, 7-6 (8-6).
Seniors Kristen Holle and Alyssa Jerlow both came through with two wins in the singles lineup last week. Holle remains one of the predominant singles player in the conference. Against B-W she faced Ali Fennern, who had an unbeaten conference record, but Holle took a 7-5, 6-3 win.
Jerlow had slumped in recent weeks, but the move to the singles lineup seemed to revitalize her play. She beat B-W 6-1, 6-2. In her match against Osceola she won the first set 6-0, but trailed 4-1 and 5-2 in the second set. She then regrouped, winning the final five games to get the 7-5 victory.
Tiger coach Teresa Kvam said the team excelled in their mental preparation for these meets.
"When we huddled I could tell they were strong and focused and they had a plan," Kvam said. "I couldn't be happier with how the girls are coming together."
New Richmond will be the site for the 2005 MBC girls tennis tournament, which will be played next Tuesday. The tournament will be starting at 8:30 a.m.
New Richmond 5, Osceola 2
No. 1: Kristen Holle (NR) def. Liz Peterson 6-0, 6-1
No. 2: Alyssa Jerlow (NR) def. Kelly Wynveen 6-0, 7-5
No. 3: Jenna Degner (O) def. Val Poppy 6-1, 6-2
No. 4: Mary Neumann (O) def. Ashley Williams 6-4, 6-2
No. 1: Ellen Railsback and Molly O'Flanagan (NR) def. Ali McIntyre and Mikayla Cotter 6-3, 6-1
No. 2: Katie Suo and Steph Anderson (NR) def. Brie Lewis and Christina Rausch 4-6, 6-2, 6-3
No. 3: Jessie Meyers and Molly Heintz (NR) def. Brit Martell and Thaia Laier 6-2, 7-6 (8-6)
New Richmond 5,
No. 1: Kristen Holle (NR) def. Ali Fennern 7-5, 6-3
No. 2: Jessica Donohoe (B) def. Laurel Hay 6-1, 6-1
No. 3: Alyssa Jerlow (NR) def. Melissa Mohn 6-1, 6-2
No. 4: Cassie Rominski (B-W) def. Val Poppy 6-2, 6-4
No. 1: Ellen Railsback and Molly O'Flanagan (NR) def. Emily Jacobsen and London Casey 6-4, 7-6 (7-4)
No. 2: Katie Suo and Steph Anderson (NR) def. Alyssa Klund and Caroline Buechter 6-2, 6-2
No. 3: Jessie Meyers and Molly Heintz (NR) def. Kristin Hoffman and Sarah Donohoe 4-6, 6-4, 13-11