Tennis: Reloaded Alexandria team to 4-2 starts into the week – Alexandria Echo Press

ALEXANDRIA – It took a bit of patience and shoveling snow on parts of the courts at Alexandria Area High School in preparation for the home opener on Saturday, but the boys’ tennis program for the Cardinals got a quad under cool but sunny conditions.

Alexandria won 2-1 at the meeting with a 5-2 win over Crookston and a 6-1 win over Osakis. Monticello took a 5-2 final in the match between two Section 8AA teams.

Through six games this week, the Cardinals have 4-2. It is the start of a season in which Alexandria has many new athletes to blend into the university lineup, after the program made back-to-back section championships, and finished second in 2021 after winning the 8AA title in 2019. 2020- the season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I know there are a lot of guys who have great potential,” said Alexandria senior Pieter Mulder. “A lot of the guys who play at the university have just been on the edge in the last couple of years, so they are excited to play and get better. I’m really excited. ”

Pieter Mulder

Alexandria senior Pieter Mulder is reacting quickly online to hitting a shot from the first double on April 9, 2022. Mulder is back this season as a player with a huge amount of university experience after playing since his first year in 2019.

Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press

Mulder was a big part of both of these 2019 and 2021 teams. He enters this spring as co-captain, wanting to show the way along with fellow senior Brennan Lattimer. Both of these guys have an understanding of what that role means after serving as captains of Alexandria’s boys hockey team this winter.

“Me and Latty, we have a good tandem,” Mulder said. “We have a lot of chemistry from hockey. We have like our own roles, and there are certainly some other leaders on the team as well. Like (senior) Gabe Evink. For me to be No. 1 in the doubles again, I feel convinced. “I want to win a lot of victories and help the team win. It’s ultimately about the team, so we have to make everyone else win.”

Mulder went 3-0 on Saturday in the first double place and won in equal sets in all three matches. He teamed up with Lattimer in a 6-1, 6-1 win over Osakis after Blake Svee played alongside Mulder in wins over Crookston and Monticello.

Brennan Lattimer

Alexandria senior Brennan Lattimer will serve in another doubles match on April 9, 2022.

Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press

Svee is part of a group of athletes who have the opportunity to step into major roles for this program. Duck student Owen Gilbertson is another as he steps up to No. 1 in the singles standings after playing lower in the ranks in 2021.

“I definitely feel pretty prepared,” Svee said. “We have a strong team. As everyone plays hard and practices hard, I think we can do well.”

Gilbertson went 1-2 last Saturday with the win in a 6-0, 6-4 final against Jack Garmen of Crookston.

The No. 1 singles spot will allow Gilbertson to face good competition all season, and he saw two strong players in Monticello’s Tyler Rousslang and Osakis’ Isaac Maddock on Saturday. Rousslang, who dropped a match against Maddock in their head-to-head competition, won a 6-1, 6-0 final over Gilbertson before Gilbertson fought well against Maddock in a 6-3, 6-2 loss.

Owen Gilbertson

Second time in Alexandria, Owen Gilbertson, fires a backhand return during his No. 1 single battle in a 6-0, 6-4 victory over Crookston’s Jack Garmen on April 9, 2022.

Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press

Cole Haabala is another sophomore for Alexandria, playing high in the ranks. He won 2-1 at the second single on Saturday.

The match against Monticello was an opportunity to see how the Cardinals fared against another program in their Section 8AA field. The Magic won some important close matches to get away with the team’s victory, including a three-setter at the second double.

Monticello took three of four in singles. Freshman Niklas Cook got Alexandria’s lone victory there by fourth single. Mulder and Svee won in equal sets at the first doubles for the Cardinals.

Niklas Cook

Alexandria freshman Niklas Cook earns during a match on April 9, 2022. Cook got a 6-2, 0-6, 10-8 victory in the fourth single against Monticello.

Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press

“We were excited for another chance to compete and gain experience over the weekend,” said Alexandria’s freshman head coach Nick Jansen. “Although the Monticello fight was a missed opportunity, (we) learned a valuable lesson about the importance of dictating the style of play and finding ways to be the aggressor in close fights.”

The early part of the season will be a good opportunity for some of Alexandria’s players to become familiar with new roles. It is both physical and mental.

“My primary goal is just to get my mind going all the time. Not be so hard on myself, ”said Svee. “Just stay in the game and have fun.”

Blake Svee

Alexandria sophomore Blake Svee positions himself for a tough comeback during a No. 1 double match on April 9, 2022.

Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press

Alexandria has played right with the top teams in the section in the last two competitive seasons, and that winning culture is something this year’s team wants to continue.

“It definitely motivates us,” Svee said. “If you look at (2021 trained senior Jacob Partington) or any of the other guys, they played super well. We want to be like them. We want to practice hard and play well.”

Bemidji is the defending 8AA champion and is back in a section field that includes 11 overall programs in Lumberjacks, Alexandria, Becker, Big Lake, Detroit Lakes, Monticello, Moorhead, Sartell, Sauk Rapids-Rice, St. Louis. Cloud and Willmar.

“There are definitely some good teams in our department,” Mulder said. “Becker was a young team last year and they have a lot of guys coming back. Bemidji are always good with their foreign exchange students. It will definitely be tough, but if we just get better, we will definitely have a chance at the end of the year. ”

That’s the goal of this Alexandria team as the season progresses – play hard, grow together and see where things fall at the end of the season.

“We also play our own tennis style,” Mulder said. “We will never give up on a ball, which is something many other teams can not relate to. It gives us a chance against anyone. “

ALEXANDRIA 5, CROOKSTON 2

SINGLE – No. 1 – Owen Gilbertson (A) def. Jack Garmen, 6-0, 6-4; No. 2 – Cole Haabala (A) def. Erik Coauette, 6-0, 6-1; Nr. 3 – Reggie Winjum (Crookston) def. Owen Godfrey, 6-4, 6-4; No. 4 – Isaac Thomforde (Crookston) def. Matthew Jiang, 7-6 (4), 6-2

DOUBLE – No. 1 – Pieter Mulder / Blake Svee (A) def. Evan Christensen / Mason Owens, 6-1, 6-3; No. 2 – Ryan Meuwissen / Brennan Lattimer (A) def. Xander Kuchan / Caleb Armstrong, 6-0, 6-2; No. 3 – Jeff Rodewald / Coltan Koehn (A) def. Tim Brule / Sam Widseth, 6-2, 6-3

MONTICELLO 5, ALEXANDRIA 2

SINGLES – Nr. 1 – Tyler Rousslang (M) def. Gilbertson, 6-1, 6-0; No. 2 – Ryan Schyma (M) def. Haabala, 6-4, 6-1; No. 3 – Zane Pemberton (M) def. Jiang, 6-1, 6-1; No. 4 – Niklas Cook (A) def. Alex Robeck, 6-2, 0-6, 10-8

DOUBLE – Nr. 1 – Mulder / Svee (A) def. Daniel Homsombath / Brandon Fyle, 6-3, 6-2; No. 2 – Wyatt Hanson / Hayden Miller (M) def. Lattimer / Meuwissen, 6-3, 5-7, 10-7; No. 3 – William Kuhn / Caleb Kalnbach (M) def. Leo Kompelian / Godfrey, 5-7, 6-2, 10-6

ALEXANDRIA 6, OSAKIS 1

SINGLES – Nr. 1 – Maddock (O) def. Owen Gilbertson, 6-3, 6-2; No. 2 – Cole Haabala (A) def. Mon, 6-0, 6-0; No. 3 – Blake Svee (A) def. Moore, 6-0, 6-1; No. 4 – Holden Hanson (A) def. Taurus, 6-2, 7-6 (7-5)

DOUBLE – No. 1 – Pieter Mulder / Brennan Lattimer (A) def. Gulbranson / Wolf, 6-1, 6-1; Nr. 2 – Alexandria wins with lost; Nr. 3 – Alexandria wins with lost

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