Lakers win points that matter to stay undefeated
Detroit Lakes picked up a third victory in as many duals to remain undefeated in the early going of the tennis season after matching 4-3 wins over Staples-Motley and Moorhead Tuesday at home.
The victory over the Cardinals was the first girls tennis win against Staples-Motley in the last five years.
“Our doubles teams played really well,” head coach Tanner Beauchman said. “Livi Hanninen and Makenna Duncan played a great match. They played together in the tournament last Saturday and clicked. They do a nice job of communicating and their games seem to blend into a great doubles tandem.”
Hanninen and Duncan cruised in their three-doubles match winning one and three.
Maddie Herzog and Mary Nelmark needed three sets to upend the Cardinals’ Haylee Wold and Katie Johnson 5-7, 6-4, 10-5 at two-doubles.
The top tandem of Emily Skjonsberg and Kenzie Braukmann had little trouble in their match winning one and three.
“Emily and Kenzie also played together in the tournament last Saturday for the first time,” said Beauchman. “They are an aggressive team. Emily has the power to beat you from the baseline and Kenzie is all over at the net.”
DL needed one singles victory to secure the win and got it from Brina Smith at three singles defeating Bryn Williams 6-1, 6-3.
“Brina has been looking really good at practice,” said Beauchman. “Her footwork is excellent and she has been developing a great feel for the game.”
Eighth-grader Siri Vagle made her varsity debut and earned the praise of her head coach for her effort in a 6-2, 6-4 loss to Rose Han. Brea Johnson stretched Claire Wolhowe to a third set at two-singles falling 10-5 in the deciding set.
Shelby Busker continued to draw the opponent’s best player and got Kelsey Peterson in a straight set defeat.
Against Moorhead, the Lakers took two of three doubles matches and needed third set tiebreaks in the final two singles matches on court to earn the one-point victory.
“Wow, this one was intense,” Beauchman said. “We dropped the first set in four of the seven matches and several of the second sets weren't looking great.”
Hanninen and Herzog had the only quick match for a Laker victory with a three and three win at three-doubles over Ava Kister and Azylen Lunak.
“Maddie Herzog was all over the court,” said Beauchman. “She was running down balls and smashing overheads.”
Braukmann and Josey Allen won the crucial points in a 7-6, 7-6 win over Claire Rix and Annika Sethe-Hofstad at one-singles.
Allen was highly effective attacking at the net and poaching when possible to get to floating returns in the middle of the court for quick and easy points, but the Spud duo battled valiantly with the Lakers’ top pairing.
Smith came through again at three-singles winning the second set 6-2 to force the third set tiebreak and closing out the match 10-6 to square the dual at three matches each.
“You could tell she took control of the match in the second set, and used that momentum to close out the match,” Beauchman said.
That left the weight of the win on the shoulders of sophomore Makenna Duncan and Moorhead junior Cassie Jensen in the deciding match at four-singles.
Duncan won the opening set 6-3, but Jensen responded by only giving up one game to even the match 6-1. The two players duked it out to a tie at 12-all in the breaker, before Duncan rallied for two straight points and a thrilling match and dual victory 14-12.
“Makenna just kept fighting, and earned a huge win for us,” said Beauchman. “To have a deciding match go to 14-12 in a third set tiebreaker is crazy. I couldn't sit still and the girls were very nervous.”
Busker put up a fight at one-singles after trailing 4-1 in the second set before taking the next five games to close out the second leading to a tense tiebreaker third of her own falling 12-10 to Brenna Mjoness.
Moorhead also picked up wins at two-singles and two-doubles.
Detroit Lakes 4, Staples-Motley 3
#1 Kelsey Peterson (SM) over Shelby Busker (DL) 6-0, 6-3
#2 Claire Wolhowe (SM) over Brea Johnson (DL) 1-6, 6-3, 10-5
#3 Brina Smith (DL) over Bryn Williams (SM) 6-1, 6-3
#4 Rose Han (SM) over Siri Vagle (DL) 6-2, 6-4
#1 Emily Skjonsberg/Kenzie Braukmann (DL) over Anna Willgohs/Bethany Johnson (SM) 6-1, 6-3
#2 Maddie Herzog/Mary Nelmark (DL) over Haylee Wold/Katie Johnson (SM) 5-7, 6-4, 10-5
#3 Livi Hanninen/Makenna Duncan (DL) over Brittney Lisson/Tasha Achermann (SM) 6-1, 6-3
Detroit Lakes 4, Moorhead 3
#1 Brenna Mjoness (M) over Shelby Busker (DL) 6-3, 4-6, 12-10
#2 Isabella Rockstad (M) over Emily Skjonsberg (DL) 6-1, 6-1
#3 Brina Smith (DL) over Sydney Mjoen (M) 4-6, 6-2, 10-6
#4 Makenna Duncan (DL) over Cassie Jensen (M) 6-3, 1-6, 14-12
#1 Kenzie Braukmann/Josey Allen (DL) over Claire Rix/Annika Sethe-Hofstad (M) 7-6, 7-6
#2 Kylie Dumas/Emma Craig (M) over Mary Nelmark/Brea Johnson (DL) 7-5, 6-2
#3 Livi Hanninen/Maddie Herzog (DL) over Ava Kister/Azylen Lunak (M) 6-3, 6-3