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Netters squeeze in a win

River Falls No. 1 singles player Matthew Meyers returns a shot with his back to the net in the second set of his three-set victory over Eau Claire North's Thomas Rose in the Wildcat boys tennis team's 5-2 victory over the Huskies Thursday, April 12, in River Falls. Bob Burrows / RiverTown Multimedia 1 / 2
River Falls' William Tuchtenhagen follows through on a return in his 6-3, 6-2 victory over Eau Claire North's Henry Thao at No. 2 singles in the Wildcat boys tennis team's 5-2 victory over the Huskies Thursday, April 12, in River Falls. Bob Burrows / RiverTown Multimedia 2 / 2

The Wildcat boys tennis team has been handling snow shovels more than tennis rackets so far this season.

But Thursday, April 12, they were able to trade those shovels for the tools of their trade and posted a 5-2 victory over Eau Claire North in their first, and for the time being only, match of the season.

"Yeah, it's been a little disheartening having winter storms with so much snow and long stretches of cold," first-year coach Nikki Feldmeier said. "The guys have been great dealing with the elements, and have done a ton of shovelling in hopes of actually practicing outside. Playing Eau Claire North on Thursday was a blessing, and we have the guys and the custodial staff to thank for making that happen."

The Wildcats swept all four singles matches and picked up a win at No. 1 doubles in their first match of the season after their first three matches were cancelled. Their match against Baldwin-Woodville scheduled for Monday, April 16, was also canceled following the latest weekend snowstorm. Weather permitting, they hope to play Thursday, April 19, at Hudson.

Last Thursday against Eau Claire North, William Tuchtenhagen made quick work of his opponent at No. 2 singles with a 6-3, 6-2 victory and the No. 1 doubles team of Mathew Chapin and Sawyer Olsen won by an identical score before Hunter Squire at No. 3 singles and Derick Grves at No. 4 both earned 6-4, 7-5 victories.

After losing his opening set, 3-6, at No. 1 singles, Matthew Meyers dropped just two games the rest of the match while taking the next two sets, 6-2, 6-0, for the Wildcats' fifth point of the day.

Paul Lindall and Hunter Charles played tough in a 6-4, 5-7, 4-6 loss at the No. 2 doubles position while Chris Beadles and Indigo Meads lost 3-6, 6-7, at No. 3.

Feldmeier said the team was pumped to finally play a match, and even more excited to post a win.

"Some of them had to really fight for their matches," she said. "Which makes it even more rewarding of an experience."

Bob Burrows

Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.

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