Boys Tennis: Red Wing drops home match to Rochester LourdesRed Wing faced its third ranked opponent in the past seven days Friday as the Wingers fell 5-2 to third-ranked (1A) Rochester Lourdes at Twin Bluff Middle School in Red Wing.
By: R-E Sports Staff, The Republican Eagle
Red Wing faced its third ranked opponent in the past seven days Friday as the Wingers fell 5-2 to third-ranked (1A) Rochester Lourdes at Twin Bluff Middle School in Red Wing.
The Eagles’ dominant singles lineup showed as they won the top three singles matches in straight sets. Rochester Lourdes’ top two players are both ranked in the top 10 of Class 1A individually. Robert Turlington is No. 2 and Brian Utz is No. 7.
“When you have a good team, you need to seek out good competition to make them better,” Red Wing head coach Randy Decker said.
Wingers’ sophomore Isaac Toivonen was able to put a scare into Utz at No. 2 singles, pushing the senior to a first set tiebreaker but Utz pulled out an 8-6 win in the tiebreak to take the opening set. He used the momentum to win the second set 6-3.
Sophomore Alex Holm looked comfortable throughout the first set against Nick Herbert at No. 3 singles despite dropping the set 6-3. His stellar play continued as he took the second set 6-3 and then breezed through the final set 6-0 to give Red Wing (5-3, 2-0 Missota) one of its two points on the day.
At No. 3 doubles, sophomore Marcus Veith and eighth-grader Travis Toivonen recovered from a first set loss to beat Anneesh Ramaroothy and Tommy Erickson 1-6, 6-3, 6-4.
“They really raised their level of play,” Decker said. “That’s going to stand us in good stead. If they’re going to play that way we’re going to be in good shape.”
After completing a week that saw the Wingers face second-ranked (2A) Elk River, top-ranked Rochester Mayo and Rochester Lourdes, Decker said it was a positive, albeit stretching, experience. Red Wing remained competitive while building toward sections and the future. The Wingers boast just three seniors in the starting lineup this season.
“It was fun to see these guys,” Decker said of playing the Eagles. “We’re looking to build and really create something special the next two years. We have five excellent players who are sophomores.”
Next week, Red Wing comes back to earth a little bit with the level of competition, Decker said. The Wingers host Rochester Century Monday at Twin Bluff Middle School to start a four match week that ends with the Winger Open next weekend.
--compiled by Chris Harrell, staff writer