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SL/O girls tennis advances to team regional semifinals

By Staff | May 14, 2008

SPENCER — The Spirit Lake/Okoboji girls tennis team surpassed two challenges on Monday to advance to this Saturday’s regional semifinals.

SL/O battled to a 5-3 win over Spencer and then beat Estherville Lincoln central 5-1.

“Spencer is a talented team and they gave it their all. We just play well against them and I have to say in general win most of the close matches,” said SL/O coach Bob O’Hara. “When it comes to winning close matches I don’t think our girls have any equal in the Lakes conference. It’s tough beating a team of Spencer’s quality three times in a season a couple of our players really gutted it out.”

O’Hara pointed to the play of Kassie Hein and Kara Crosgrove.

“Kassie’s third set performance against Beth Druvenga was as determined of an effort as you can give,” he said. “She was down 2-5, fought off two match points then rallied and pulled out the win.”

In singles play, Alli Gerking beat Hannah Maertens 6-4, 6-0; Aubry Kolegraff lost 6-4, 6-0 to Emily Wassom; Hein won 6-3, 4-6, 7-5 over Druvenga; Cassidy Clarity won 6-3, 7-6 (7-5); Kara Crosgrove won 5-7, 6-4, 6-3 over MacKenzie Kabrick and Shirley Coenen lost 6-2, 6-3 to Holly McCloud.

“Kara played about the same type of match but what I remember most is how well she played in her doubles match,” said O’Hara. “Kara literally took over the match and forced Spencer out of their game. It’s the best doubles that I’ve ever seen Kara play.”

In doubles, Gerking and Clarity lost 6-4, 6-1 to maertens and Wassom while Crosgrove and Kylie Stoll won 6-4, 6-2 over Barnett and McCloud.

“Against Estherville I think we just did what we needed to do,” said O’Hara. “We looked good at 1 and 2 but in the rest of the positions may have left our best tennis out on the court against Spencer.”

In singles, Gerking won 6-3, 6-3 over Stephanie Wittmer; Kolegraff won 6-2, 6-1 over Lexie Hash; hein lost 6-2, ,3-6, 6-2 to Sarah Chrestiansen; Clarity won 6-3, 6-3 over Erin Olson; Crosgrove won 7-5, 6-2 over Kaylene Vos and Coenen won 6-0, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2 over Emily Swalve.