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East Ridge girls tennis: State powers too much for Raptors

Last week, the youthful East Ridge girls tennis team played tough against three of the state's top teams, but couldn't pull off an upset.

East Ridge lost 4-3 to Mounds View and 5-2 to Stillwater in a pair of Suburban East Conference matches and 5-2 to Lakeville South in non-conference play.

East Ridge is now 2-4 overall and 1-2 in the conference.

"We had our chances in all three matches, but came up short," said Suzie Heideman, who is filling in for head coach Jon Rydberg temporarily while he is in London competing in the Paralympic Games. "It was a great week of tennis, even though we suffered losses."

Heideman coaches the East Ridge boys tennis team.

"My philosophy has always been that you celebrate the wins, but you really learn from the losses, especially close losses, as all of these were," she said.

To start the week, East Ridge fell 4-3 at Mounds View on Tuesday.

Nicole Robinson won 6-1, 6-2 at third singles and Minh-Tu Van won 3-6, 7-6(3), 10-5 at fourth singles for the Raptors. In doubles action, the top East Ridge duo of Taylor Anderson and Natalie Robinson defeated Paige Thayer and Catie Meinen 6-2, 6-1 at first doubles.

After the loss, East Ridge returned home, but lost 5-2 to Stillwater on Thursday. Anderson and Natalie Robinson again teamed up for a win at first doubles, 6-3, 6-3 and Anna Bearrood and Regan Dolezal won 5-7, 6-2, 10-6 at No. 2 doubles.

To cap the week, East Ridge fell 5-2 at Lakeville South.

Anderson and Natalie Robinson won 6-3, 6-3 at No. 1 doubles and Bearrood and Dolezal won 6-3, 7-5 at No. 2 doubles for East Ridge. Anderson, a junior, and Natalie Robinson, a freshman, are undefeated in their dual matches this season.

"We learned a lot about tennis match circumstances and about ourselves this past week," Heideman said. "It is a true team, where each player is supportive of her teammates. This team is a group of great girls, who never give up. I had a great time working with the girls for the past couple weeks."