Hudson tennis team opens with a bangThe Raider boys’ tennis team got off to a hot start last week with dual wins over Baldwin-Woodville and Chippewa Falls and three 7-0 victories over Wisconsin Valley Conference opponents at the BRC/MVC Challenge Saturday at Eau Claire North.
By: Bob Burrows, Hudson Star-Observer
The Raider boys’ tennis team got off to a hot start last week with dual wins over Baldwin-Woodville and Chippewa Falls and three 7-0 victories over Wisconsin Valley Conference opponents at the BRC/MVC Challenge Saturday at Eau Claire North.
The Raiders opened the season with a 6-1 win at Baldwin last Tuesday, April 10, before winning their BRC opener at Chippewa Falls, 5-2, on the road two days later. Saturday, April 14 they defeated Marshfield, Wisconsin Rapids and Wausau West by identical 7-0 scores.
Head coach Dave Dahl said the scores may indicate things were pretty one-sided in favor of the Raiders, but he said plenty of players, both veterans and newcomers, delivered in the clutch.
“We’re not even set on a lineup yet, but from what I saw in the first week, we might have a few more options than I anticipated before the season began,” Dahl said. “As much as anything at this point, I like the opportunity these guys will have to push one another in practice.”
Two time state qualifier Max Hawksford and senior classmate Jeff Dahl, who will serve as the team’s co-captains this season, both started out 5-0 last week and lead the talented crop of returning players.
“Max totally outclassed the competition Saturday, outscoring his opponents 36-0,” Coach Dahl said. “Jeff played well for us last year at two singles. He’ll play that spot again, along with some doubles with junior Griffin Robertson.”
Junior returning letterwinner Jake Shreffler and sophomore Kody Owens have also started the season 5-0, while sophomores Sam Duchow and Cal Johnson have four wins each and Max Cherrier, Mitch Karras, Ben Wirth and freshman Christian Willeke all have three. Ben Klundt and Jack Schulte have two victories apiece.
Dahl said he expects good things from the team’s newcomers.
“Juniors Ben Koch and Dan Botethi are looking to make their mark this season, and we have a sophomore class big in numbers and potential,” he said.
The Raiders will host Eau Claire North in their home opener this Thursday, April 19, at 4 p.m. at the high school courts and compete at the Wausau West Invitational Friday and Saturday, April 20-21.
Dahl said the team can’t afford to get comfortable with its early season success.
“It has been a pleasant surprise to start so well, but of course, more important is how we finish,” he said. “As exciting as the fast start is, to a player, everyone knows there’s plenty of room to improve.”