LAKE CITY - Rochester Lourdes had a distinct advantage Tuesday against Lake City.
The Eagles have an indoor practice facility in Rochester to escape the inclement weather this spring while the Tigers are stuck indoors at the high school gym without a regulation size net. And it doesn't hurt that Lourdes is also the third-ranked team in Class 1A.
"They've been practicing at night indoors all the time and we just have a gym and you can't get much done in a gym," Lake City head coach Dave Toole said.
During Tuesday's match, Lourdes' talent and training led to a 7-0 victory over the Tigers.
"They're a very strong and deep team," Toole said. "I was very satisfied with our play today. We played well. They're just better than us. We might catch up to them, we'll see what happens, I don't know if we can beat them ... but we didn't back off."
Lake City won just 12 games total in the match, with the Tigers' No. 2 doubles pairing of Landin Burdis and Logan Adler leading Tommy Erickson and Skylar Lopez-Kohler 4-2 in the first set before falling 6-4, 6-0.
"When you get in against Lourdes, you try to do a little too much and they over hit a little bit," Toole said. "They kind of beat themselves."
At No. 1 singles, Christian Custer and Andrew Schreck struggled to get any momentum until the final three games of the second set. Custer and Schreck broke the Eagles' Hadi Berbari and Peter Erickson to make it 5-2 in the second set but lost the match 6-1, 6-2.
"We barely had any practice and they practice indoors so it's tough," Custer said. "They got up to the net and killed us at the net. We just tried to have a little fun. I tried to lob a little bit more (late in the match)."
Brady Kuchinka and Riley Forcelle won a game each at No. 3 and No. 4 singles, respectively, for Lake City's only tallies in singles competition.
"Last year, we only got three games (total) off Lourdes and this year we showed a little bit," Toole said. "We learned we can hit with these guys. We can play with them. We're not afraid of them. A lot of times, we get in awe of them and we're not in awe of them."
Next up, the Tigers travel to face Stewartville Thursday to begin a stretch of six matches in nine days.
"We're quite happy where we are considering what's gone on this season," Toole said.