The Pirate girls' tennis team, seeded fourth in Section 8A Team Tournament, narrowly defeated No. 5 Roseau Tuesday 5-2 at Choice Health & Fitness in Grand Forks, N.D. The Pirates won two singles matches in three sets to advance their season.
"I said to Brian [Follette] before the match we would win the doubles and we would just have to win a singles," said Pirate head coach Mike Geffre. "I thought two and four singles were tilted in our favor and one and three were tilted in their favor."
Crookston defeated Roseau 5-2 to start the season on Aug. 21 and the two teams did not meet head-to-head until Tuesday as a dual on Sept. 28 was cancelled due to weather.
"It was close in Roseau, too, when we played," noted coach Geffre. "Not a whole lot changed. We probably won easier in doubles this time. Alyssa [Fee] won in three in Roseau and Ally [Tiedemann] won in straights but it was close up there. Lydia was better this time. It was a good match and I knew it would be."
The Pirates swept the three doubles matches, winning them all in straight sets. Eighth grader Ally Tiedemann at second singles and sophomore Alyssa Fee at fourth singles each won in three sets.
"Terry Paukert (East Grand Forks head coach) told me Ally doesn't always have the greatest strokes but she is competitive and finds a way to win. Ally made some adjustments and started getting the ball deeper and keeping the girl off balance.
"Our doubles have really picked it up last few weeks," Geffre continued. "We are starting to understand doubles a little bit better. In doubles, there is more strategy involved with your partner. If our doubles play continues to be solid it puts pressure on other teams."
Crookston, now 11-7 in duals this season, will take on top seeded Staples-Motley in the semifinals Friday at 9 a.m. in Grand Forks. Staples-Motley defeated Perham 7-0 in the quarterfinals. No. 2 Park Rapids and No. 3 Pequot Lakes will play in the other semifinal as they each beat their quarterfinal opponents, Wadena-Deer Creek and East Grand Forks, 7-0. The section title match will follow semifinals.
The first rounds of the section singles and doubles tournaments will begin immediately following the team championship and will conclude Saturday.
"We saw [Staples-Motley] in one spot at Litchfield," noted coach Geffre. "We have comparative scores against Park Rapids and Sauk Centre. It will be a competitive match. We are not going to blow them out and they aren't going to blow us out. It will come down to who is playing well and who is not letting nerves bother them."
Crookston def. Roseau 5-2
Page 2 of 2 - 1st singles - Bethany Tangen (R) def. Amber Trostad, 6-1, 6-1
2nd singles - Ally Tiedemann def. Bailey Janzen (R) 7-6 (7-3), 4-6, 6-1
3rd singles - Marissa Jevne (R) def. Lydia Shafer 6-3, 6-2
4th singles - Alyssa Fee def. Juli Miller (R) 4-6, 6-3 7-6 (7-2)
1st doubles - Leah Trostad & Lizzy Awender def. Morgan Bicker & Sarina Goos (R) 6-1, 6-1
2nd doubles - Rachel Kanten & Kennedy Resendiz def. C.J. Hulst & Amanda Schmechel 6-3, 6-2
3rd doubles - Tori Demarais & Amy Follette def. Lauren Johnson & Katie Wensloff (R) 6-4, 6-1
Follow Derek Martin on Twitter: Twitter.com/DerekDMartin