Bucs advance to the Section finals
Even having to resort to her ‘old’ racket did not stop Blue Earth Area senior Arika Howard from getting the first point for her team in last Thursday’s Section 3A semifinal triumph against the Luverne Cardinals.
The No. 2-seeded Buc-caneers downed the Cardinals 6-1 and will now face the No. 1 seeded St. James Area Saints on Tuesday, Oct. 13, at 4:30 p.m.
Howard broke a string on her regular racket during warmups and had to use the racket she played with during last season.
It did not matter as Howard defeated Ainslie Robinson in the No. 3 singles match 6-1, 6-1.
At No. 3 singles, Cali Beyer and Olivia Dutton continued their solid play and claimed a 6-3, 6-1, victory over the Cardinals’ Liz Kelm and Brynn Thier.
Luverne got their only win of the day in a tightly contested battle in the No. 2 doubles match. Olivia Wieneke and Jacy Smith of the Cardinals downed Lyndsey Borris and Britt Howard 7-5, 7-5.
McKenna Duttons strong serves and Kylie Rosenau’s passing shots helped trigger BEA’s 6-1, 6-2, victory in the No. 1 doubles match over Luverne’s Lauren Ver-Steeg and Solveig Toftland.
At. No. 2 singles, Marissa Benz of the Bucs downed the Cardinals’ Elise Jarchow in three sets to lock up the match for BEA.
Benz won the first set 6-0 but Jarchow rallied for a 6-4 victory in the second set to tie the match at one set apiece.
Benz regained command in the final set, winning 6-1.
BEA’s Addison Armstrong fell behind early in her No. 4 singles match against Luverne’s Mia Wenzel. Armstrong, a freshman trailed in the first set 3-2 before winning the next four games for a 6-3 triumph. Armstrong secured the victory by downing Wenzel 6-4 in the second set.
In the final match of the day, Ta Armstrong, the Bucs’ No. 1 singles player, won her final match on Schroeder courts as a high school player by defeating the Cardinals’ Roz Oye 6-2, 6-1.
With the win, BEA improved their record to 13-1 heading into their rematch with the Saints on Tuesday.
BEA 7, River Valley 0
The Blue Earth Area Buccaneers opened play in the Section 3A team tennis playoffs with a solid 7-0 triumph over the River Valley Wildcats on Monday, Oct. 5. The match was played at Schroeder Courts in Blue Earth.
The No. 2-seeded Bucs came into the contest with an 11-1 record and made quick work of their No. 7-seeded opponent.
Cali Beyer and Olivia Dutton were the first BEA players to gain a win. The No. 3 doubles team lost only one game while defeating Maya Nelson and Courtlyn Runck 6-1, 6-0.
Four other matches were completed in short order and all of them went to the Bucs.
Marissa Benz played a solid ground game at No. 2 singles and downed Kay-dince Thomas of the Wildcats 6-1, 6-1.
Arika Howard was the next member of the Maroon and Gold to record a victory. The agile senior gained a 6-1, 6-0, win over Kierra Lafferty of the Wildcats to put the Bucs on top 3-0.
Moments later BEA’s Addison Armstrong won the fourth and deciding match with a 6-3, 6-0, triumph over Taylor Berkner.
At No. 1 doubles, the Bucs’ McKenna Dutton and Kylie Rosenau kept the momentum going by downing Meghan Stevens and Alexis Garza 6-1, 6-2.
The No. 2 doubles match was the only three-set contest of the day. BEA’s Britt Howard and Lyndsey Borris won the opening set 6-1 over River Valley’s Erica Lozano and Sydne Wahl.
Lozano and Wahl fought back to claim the second set 6-2 to force a third set, super tiebreaker.
Howard and Borris took the lead early in the final set and held on to win 10-6.
The No. 1 singles players were the last ones to begin play on the six-court facility.
The Bucs Ta Armstrong looked sharp as she put away winning point after winning point on her way to a 6-0, 6-1, victory over Brooklyn Moldan.