Tiger tennis team hooks into Al ‘Tuna’New Richmond tennis players brought their fishing equipment to last Friday’s match.
By: Dave Newman, New Richmond News
New Richmond tennis players brought their fishing equipment to last Friday’s match.
They were out to land Al “Tuna.”
Altoona nearly landed the Tigers. The Rails won three of the first four matches to finish. The final three matches, all on the singles side, all stretched for more than two hours. The Tigers managed to win all three of those matches to land their 4-3 win over the Rails.
The last three matches to finish were at one, three and four singles. All three of those matches went to four sets.
The first of those to be completed was Justice Harvieux’s 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 win at one singles. His opponent, Luke Revello, was playing an aggressive serve-and-volley game.
“His adjustment was to concentrate on hard, low returns, ignoring if Revello was coming in or not,” said Tiger coach Mike Montello. “Justice is in phenomenal shape and after the second set win I told him the longer he played, the better his chances were.”
Harvieux never trailed in the third set.
The most dramatic finish of the match was at three singles, where New Richmond’s Jorden Aufderhar and Altoona’s Ryan Hanson battled deep into a third set tie-breaker. Aufderhar won the first set 6-4, but stumbled in the second set, losing 6-1.
The third set was an epic. Aufderhar took a 3-0 lead, but Hansen quickly battled back. They traded games, forcing the tie-breaker.
Hanson scored the first three points of the tie-break, but Aufderhar answered by winning the next four. It went back and forth with both players staving off a loss several times.
Aufderhar trailed 11-10 and had a service fault, meaning he was one errant serve away from losing. He got the serve and won the point. He then won two more, with a final point providing one of the most spectacular finishes to a Tiger match in years.
During the final point, Aufderhar dove to reach a ball and make his return. Hanson returned the shot, but Aufderhar scrambled to his feet to reach the return and send it back to Hanson. This time Hanson’s return was hit into the net, giving Aufderhar the point.
“It was a great display of two players who wanted to win,” Montello said.
That tied the team score at 3-3. The final match on the court was the four singles bout between Tiger sophomore Isaiah Hobbs and Altoona senior Drew Gardner. Hobbs won the opening set 6-4 and Gardner took the second set by the same score.
In the third set Hobbs began putting more force behind his shots and built a 4-1 lead. Gardner won the next two games, before Hobbs closed out the match by winning the final two games.
The Tigers’ first win was at two singles, where freshman Nick Bradish stayed in control to win 6-3, 6-3.
Altoona won all three of the doubles matches. The Tigers were inconsistent at all three flights of doubles and weren’t able to win a set in any of the matches.
When the Tigers arrived in Durand for last Thursday’s MBC match, they pretty much were already guaranteed a win.
Why? Durand only has six players on its team.
The Tigers scored a 7-0 win, receiving forfeits in the two and three doubles matches.
Montello shuffled his lineup for this match, moving Harvieux and Aufderhar over from doubles to play one and three singles. Harvieux looked sharp in the return to singles, beating senior Luke Hayden 6-2, 6-0. Aufderhar was a bit rusty in his singles techniques at first, but came through with a 6-2, 6-1 win.
The rest of the wins were 6-0, 6-0 breezes.
The Tigers have two home dates up next on their schedule. On Thursday they will host Eau Claire Regis. The annual New Richmond quad tournament is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. on Saturday. Amery, Altoona and Baldwin-Woodville will join the Tigers in the event.
The Tigers have another conference match scheduled for next Tuesday, when they play at Osceola.