Cardinals split weekend doubleheader
LUVERNE -- The Luverne girls tennis team opened up the season with a 1-1 record after falling to United South Central 4-3 and bouncing back to knock off Lac qui Parle Valley 6-1 Saturday.
"We played quite well for our first matches of the season," LHS girls tennis coach Greg Antoine said. "Not a single girl was in the same spot as last year, and a lot were switched from doubles to singles. We hit the ball well today, we just need to get some experience under our belts and figure out who should be playing where."
In their first match of the day, the Cardinals split the singles matches with USC, but were outmatched in the doubles where USC took two of three from Luverne.
"Our doubles teams need to get used to each other and then become a little more aggressive in their style of play," Antoine said. "We are a team that I feel will improve with every match we play."
USC's Claire Christian took down No. 1 singles player Paige Adams 6-2, 6-3, but Kynzie Smedsrud got Luverne back in the match with a victory over Julia Stenzel, winning 3-6, 6-3, 10-6. Kia Legreid picked up another point for USC with a win over McKenzi Wenninger (6-0, 6-0), while Luverne's Samantha Pierce defeated Wendy Martinez 6-1, 6-3.
In the doubles matches, Joyce Rubio and Angela Bixby of USC knocked off Luverne's No. 1 doubles pair of Brianna Erickson and Danielle Kneip, 6-2, 6-2. USC also got a doubles victory at No. 3 doubles after Veronica Schindler and Carly Weber defeated Tatiana Gust and Monaya Hustoft, 4-6, 6-3, 10-6. Luverne's Lexie Severtson and Brooke Nattress picked up the only doubles win for the Cardinals with a victory over Leah Meyer and Emma Barnd (6-3, 4-6, 10-4) at No. 2 doubles.
In the second match of the day against, Luverne came back strong, sweeping the singles matches and taking two of three from LQPV in the doubles matches.
"Our singles really played well in this match," Antoine said. "They moved their opponents around and took advantage of them when they had their opportunity."
Adams took down LQPV's Kylie Jahn (7-5, 7-5) at No. 1 singles, while Smedsrud knocked off Kayryn Siedschlag (6-4, 6-1) at No. 2 singles. Wenninger won her No. 3 singles match against Kristine Hamburg (6-3, 6-3) and Hustoft completed the singles sweep for Luverne with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Jessica Maland at No. 4 singles.
At No. 1 singles, Erickson and Kneip picked up a win over Mary Savoy and Courtney Hansen (6-2, 6-2), while Gust and Emily Wendland took down Ashton Oie and Katie Breberg (6-1, 6-2). The only loss for the Cardinals came at No. 2 doubles, with LQPV's Karissa Jahn and Molly Hacker defeating Severtson and Brook Nattress (6-3, 6-2).
"Our doubles teams just need to be a little more aggressive and to put their opponents into situations where we can finish the point," Antoine said.
The Cardinals host Yellow Medicine East and Pipestone today.