Model of consistency
The Osakis tennis team continues to solidify itself as one of the top Class A programs in the state by punching a ticket to its third straight state tournament after winning the Section 6A title last Thursday afternoon.
The Silverstreaks got to the title match with a 7-0 win over Sauk Centre in the semifinals after taking care of Morris 7-0 in the opener. They then went on to beat third-seeded Melrose 5-2 to run their record to 19-1 and secure the section title.
“To make the state tournament for the third straight year is an awesome accomplishment for this team,” head coach Ryan Maddock said. “Our section had two other high-quality teams in Minnewaska and Melrose, so to make it through our section was very tough.”
Melrose got to the title match with Osakis by downing Minnewaska 4-3 in the semifinals. The Silverstreaks weren’t going to let the Dutchmen pull off another upset.
Taylor Kraemer dominated her first singles match to set the tone in the championship match. She won 6-0, 6-0, while Hannah Szech also took care of things at fourth singles with a 6-4, 6-4 win.
That was all the wins they needed in the singles lineup after the Osakis doubles teams ran the table. Katie Anderson and Katelyn Foster won 6-2, 6-4 at the first spot. Elyse Wiener and Peyton Garcia needed three sets but persevered in a tough match with Kelly Kennedy and Sheila Poepping to win 3-6, 6-1, (13-11). Morgan Silbernick and Ashley Kraemer also won at the third spot with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Madison Worms and Mady Brinkman.
“I feel we played our best tennis at sections,” Maddock said. “I am so proud of our team with how they conduct themselves on and off the court.”
Osakis is ranked fifth in the latest Class A rankings after spending much of the season ranked second. The Silverstreaks’ only loss of the year came against fourth-ranked Foley late in the regular season. Now they are ready to see how they fare against some of the other top teams in the state in Minneapolis.
“Our expectations down at state are to play with as much focus and energy as we can and try to get wins wherever we can,” Maddock said. “It is very tough to get wins at the state level, so we will be happy with any type of wins we can get. I believe we get the number one team in the state [in Breck] right away, so we will have our work cut out for us.
“The metro area and Rochester schools are always so tough for out-state schools to play. We will definitely do our best though. It will be nice for this group to be more of an underdog instead of being the favorite to win.”
Osakis will have some time to prepare for those kinds of teams over the next week. The Silverstreaks kick off the Class A state tournament on October 22 at 8 a.m. at the Reed-Sweatt Family Tennis Center in Minneapolis.
SECTION 6A TOURNAMENT
Osakis 5, Melrose 2
SINGLES – No. 1 – Kraemer (O) def. Grace Brang, 6-0, 6-0; No. 2 – Elisha Engelmeyer (M) def. Hannah Baker, 6-4, 6-1; No. 3 – Jailyn Brinkman (M) def. Alexa Hoffarth, 3-6, 6-0, 6-1; No. 4 – Szech (O) def. Becky Klaphake, 6-4, 6-4
DOUBLES – No. 1 – Anderson/Foster (O) def. Madison Rausch/Kennedy Meyer, 3-6, 6-1, (13-11); No. 3 – Silbernick/A. Kraemer (O) def. Madison Worms/Mady Brinkman, 6-3, 6-2
Osakis 7, Sauk Centre 0
SINGLES – No. 1 – Kraemer (O) def. Bethany Ellis, 6-0, 6-2; No. 2 – Baker (O) def. Faith Henry, 6-0, 6-1; No. 3 – Hoffarth (O) def. Abbi Primus, 6-0, 6-0; No. 4 – Szech (O) def. Danelle Reiter, 6-1, 6-0
DOUBLES – No. 1 – Anderson/Foster (O) def. Jessica Rodenbiker/Morgan Kranz, 6-0, 6-4; No. 2 – Wiener/Garcia (O) def. Sophia Rick/Molly Weyer, 6-2, 6-1; No. 3 – Silbernick/A. Kraemer def. Hope Schwinghammer/Nicole Meyer, 6-2, 6-2
Osakis 7, Morris 0
SINGLES – No. 1 – T. Kraemer (O) def. Abbie Olson, 6-0, 6-0; No. 2 – Baker (O) def. Katie Connor, 6-2, 6-1; No. 3 – Hoffarth (O) def. Maddie Hennen, 6-1, 6-0; No. 4 – Szech (O) won by forfeit
DOUBLES – No. 1 – Anderson/Foster (O) def. Carly Gullickson/Kjersa Anderson, 6-3, 6-1; No. 2 – Wiener/Garcia (O) def. Kaitlin Vogel/Brittany Cardwell, 6-2, 6-2; No. 3 – Silbernick/A. Kraemer (O) def. Annie Brant/Jessica Burks, 6-3, 6-0