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home : sports : high school sports April 30, 2017

4/18/2017 7:31:00 AM
Hodag tennis goes 1-2 in weather-shortened invite

The Rhinelander High School boys' tennis team was hoping to get two full days of competitive tennis in over the weekend at Green Bay Southwest. Mother Nature altered those plans, raining out Saturday's play, after the Hodags went 1-2 in the Friday matches.

Rhinelander was blanked by host Green Bay Southwest 7-0 in Friday's first match and lost 6-1 to West De Pere before wrapping up the day with a 4-3 win over Oshkosh North.

"The two-day meet was cut short because of weather, but Friday was a full day," coach Bob Heideman said. 'We travel to Green Bay to get the competition and we got plenty of that."

Doubles carried Rhinelander to victory in the match against Oshkosh North with the teams of Grant Gilbert/Jared Fabich, Connor Young/Jared Haug and Russell Benoy/Marshall Bessette all earning straight-set wins. Senior Logan Wild was Rhinelander's only winning in singles play.

Gilbert and Fabich knocked off the Oshkosh North team of Logan Froseth and Josiah Miller 6-4, 6-2 in the first doubles flight; Young and Haug were 6-3, 7-5 winners over Joe Szydilk and Raymond Dorschner at No. 2 and Benoy and Bessette rounded out the doubles sweep with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Michael Grant and Nathan Dutscheck in the third flight.

Though no Rhinelander entry won more than one match Friday, Heideman singled out the play of his top two doubles tandems. Young and Haug had the most competitive match in the loss to Green Bay Southwest, falling to Lucas Steibert and Jake White, 6-4, 6-3.

"Connor and Jared (Haug) are competitive no matter who they go against at No. 2 doubles," Heideman said. "Every match this season they've either won or been in a position to win. If they can clean up some errors and shot selection choices, they'll take another jump up in the level of their play.

"Grant and Jared (Fabich) have had tougher sledding at No. 1 doubles but - winning or losing - mentally, they stay in matches with a pretty consistent level of effort. That's a good sign."

Wild went 1-2 in the top singles flight Friday, with a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Oshkosh North's Max Bossert to round out his day. Junior Markus Johnson scored Rhinelander's lone win in the West De Pere match, edging out Quinn Norton in a third-set super tiebreaker 2-6, 6-1, 14-12.

The Hodags had a couple of other close calls during the invite. Benoy, playing third singles against West De Pere's Colin Skubal, fell in a three-set match 6-7 (7) 6-2, 11-13. Cade Aschenbrenner dropped a three-setter at No. 3 singles against Oshkosh North's Trevor Beam 2-6, 6-4, 4-10.

Aschenbrenner, a junior, was one of three new players in the varsity lineup for the Hodags during the invite.

"Freddy Wisner, who was a late addition to this trip, along with Cade Aschenbrenner and Logan Oestreich are all discovering they can compete on the varsity level and (are) getting a glimpse of how good you need to be (in order to be) successful, which is often closer and farther away at the same time," Heideman said.

Rhinelander (5-3, 2-0 Great Northern) will host its first home match of the season Tuesday afternoon against Phillips at the RHS tennis courts.

Jeremy Mayo may be reached at jeremy@rivernewsonline.com.





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