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East Ridge girls tennis: Raptors improve to 4-1 in conference

The East Ridge girls tennis team bounced back from back-to-back-to-back losses with a pair of victories and a second-place finish at the Raptor/Royal tournament last week.

East Ridge beat Park 7-0 and Hastings 6-1 in two Suburban East Conference contests and edged Woodbury and five other teams in the eight-team Raptor/Royal invite last week.

The two conference wins raised the Raptors’ record to 4-1 in the SEC on the year.

“A good week for the Raptor ladies with two conference wins,” East Ridge head coach Jon Rydberg said. “The tournament ended well with a strong Princeton team running away with the team title after having the best results of any team champion we have had since the start of the tournament.”

The strong showings by the Raptors came on the heels a conference loss to Stillwater and non-conference losses to Rosemount and Shakopee during a three-team tournament at Rosemount.

In the win over Park, Natalie Robinson defeated Nina Riesselman 6-0, 6-2 at No. 1 singles, Nicole Robinson beat Carley Zwascha 6-0, 6-0 at No. 2 singles, Minh-Tu Van defeated Iris Burbank 6-0, 6-0 at third singles and Sophie Stark defeated Paloma Garcia 6-1, 6-0 at fourth singles. In doubles play, the combo of Taylor Anderson and Regan Dolezal defeated Danielle Meyers and Mallorie Briggs 7-5, 6-0 at No. 1 doubles, Anna Bearrood and Megan Karrow defeated Molly Swanson and Maggie Oppolo 6-1, 7-5 at No. 2 doubles and Audri Sturm and Katelyn Champoux defeated Edem Abrams and Steffanie Clause 6-1, 6-0.

Against Hastings, East Ridge swept singles and dropped just one doubles match. At No. 1 singles, Natalie Robinson won 6-1, 6-1 over Anna Foster, Nicole Robinson defeated Bailey Alter 6-4, 6-1 at second singles and Van beat Sara Lund 6-1, 6-3 at third singles while Stark won 6-0, 6-1 at fourth singles. In doubles play the duos of Anderson and Dolezal (6-3, 6-2) and Bearrood and Karrow (6-0, 6-1) earned straight-set wins at first and second doubles, respectively.

At the Raptor/Royal invite, Princeton took the top spot as a team – just ahead of East Ridge.

However, the Raptors had some strong individual results.

Sturm and Champoux earned first place at third doubles, Nicole Robinson took second place at No. 2 singles, while the fourth-doubles combination of Divya Pillai, Lizzie Purtell and Sahana Iyer earned second, too.

Taking third was Natalie Robinson at No. 1 singles, the No. 1 doubles team of Anderson and Dolezal. In addition, the second doubles team of Bearrood and Karrow took fifth, as did Sophie Stark at fourth singles, while Van was seventh at third singles.

East Ridge also recently earned a big 4-3 win over rival Woodbury.

East Ridge won two singles matches and two doubles matches to squeak out the win against the Royals.

Natalie Robinson won 7-6(4), 6-3 over Taylor Monkman at No. 1 singles and Nicole Robinson earned a 6-3, 6-2 victory at second singles over Katie Kreibech.

In doubles action, the Raptors’ No. 2 team Bearrood and Karrow won 6-2, 6-0 and the third doubles team of Champoux and Sturm won a close one, 7-6(7), 4-6, 6-4, over Jenica Monkman and Allison Marshall to take the match.

“We pulled out a close win despite not being at our best,” Rydberg said.

East Ridge has a tough stretch ahead with Cretin-Derham Hall and Mounds View this week, plus a non-conference match up versus Lakeville South.

“We’re looking to finish up the last two weeks of conference play on a strong note and go for our highest finish in school history,” Rydberg said.

—Patrick Johnson

Patrick Johnson
Patrick Johnson has been the South Washington County Bulletin’s sports editor since 2008. He reports on and oversees coverage of high school and amateur sports in south Washington County and Woodbury. Prior to joining the Bulletin, Johnson worked for other Twin Cities suburban newspapers. He is a University of Minnesota graduate.
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