Redwood Valley rolls past Eagles
NEW ULM – Miriam Jakel slammed the flippable scoreboard numbers hanging off the side of the net in frustration after dropping her first set on Tuesday.
New Ulm girl’s tennis coach Kevin Maudal went out to console Jakel after her 6-1 loss to Redwood Valley’s Alyssa Lueck in the No. 2 singles slot. However, Jakel went on to lose her next set in a fashion that appropriately embodied the troubles plaguing New Ulm in its 5-2 loss to Redwood Valley.
“Her opponent was very good at playing both the short and long game,” Maudal said. “She kind of watched where Miriam was at and if Miriam was too deep, she could drop them short; if Miriam came up, she knew she could play the lob game.
“She played where Miriam wasn’t.”
Jakel’s frustrations were akin to that of the entire team – it was close to notching those critical points but ended up in the wrong place at the wrong time, much in part to inexperience.
In the No. 1 doubles match, New Ulm’s Emma Vranich and Graclyn Sarkar won the first set 6-2, but lost the next two to lose to Redwood Valley’s Abby Einck and Kenzie Jeseritz.
“Losing the second set kind of gotten to our heads,” Vranich said. “We felt a little bit dejected by the end of it. I think at the end, they had started to figure out our weaknesses and they just played to that.”
That loss gave the Cardinals the fourth team point to solidify the victory.
Had Vranich and Sarkar been able to pull out that victory, the Eagles would have been down 3-2 with a chance for a comeback victory by No. 3 doubles team Claire Dobie and Meleah Reinhart. Dobie and Reinhart had taken their opponents to an extra frame in the second set, but lost 7-5.
Taylor Bolduan and Matea Seivert picked up victories in the No. 3 and 4 singles spots.
Bolduan, who also won her match in New Ulm’s earlier meet against Redwood Valley, said her serving was on point in her win against Carli Grannes.
“She couldn’t always return the serves,” Bolduan said. “The forehands from side to side tired her out.”
Seivert, who took the court after the first three singles matches had concluded, impressed in her 6-0, 6-2 victory against Jillian Read.
“Matea Seivert played her best game that I had seen all season,” Maudal said. “[She] played comfortable, got into the rhythm of it and knew what she needed to do and finished it fairly quickly.”
Despite their two victories, the Eagles’ struggles were still prevalent thanks in part to their youth and the inexperience that comes from it.
“We don’t have any seniors this year and all of our juniors played lower positions last year so they’ve all had to move up exponentially,” Vranich said. “I think it’s just been tough on the team having to experience a higher level of playing right away.”
Vranich said next season should much better for the Eagles once they have built upon the experience from this season.
New Ulm continues its season Thursday at home against Fairmont. The meet is scheduled to start at 4:30 p.m.
Redwood Valley 5, New Ulm 2
1. Ahnna Malecek (RV) def. Mya Sarkar 6-1, 6-1
2. Alyssa Lueck (RV) def. Miriam Jakel 6-1, 6-0
3. Taylor Bolduan (NU) def. Carli Grannes 6-1, 6-0
4. Matea Seivert (NU) def. Jillian Read 6-0, 6-2
1. Abby Einck/Kenzie Jeseritz (RV) def. Emma Vranich/Graclyn Sarkar 2-6, 6-3, 6-2
2. Rhylee Schmidt/Tori Jeseritz (RV) def. Jane Arnoldt/Sara Guyman 6-2, 6-4
3. Kenzie Manthei/Kylie Doering (RV) def. Claire Dobie/Meleah Reinhart 6-3, 7-5