Bobcats have ‘lots to work on’ after loss
The Marshalltown girls’ tennis team is finally starting to get outside.
The positive of that Tuesday was that coach Dennis Paul got to see what his team needed to work on. The negative, though, was that those things translated into a 10-1 loss to Newton in the season opener at the MHS tennis courts.
“I saw a lot of racket rust from the previous year,” Paul said. “We were not executing well. Newton executed much better than we did. We have a lot to work on.”
Senior Rachel Faircloth was the only winner for the Bobcats as she dominated her match at No. 1 singles. But the Cardinals won nine matches in straight sets and rallied to claim their 10th win in three sets, losing the tiebreaker 10-7.
“Same old story with Marshalltown,” Paul said. “We can’t seem to pick those tiebreakers up. It wasn’t conditioning this time. It was execution. We need to work on our serves and our net play. We can work on those kind of things in practice.
“It’s the little things but we have to start doing that stuff better.”
Faircloth beat Katelyn Camp 6-1, 6-0 in her match at No. 1 singles. Camp got the last laugh though with a doubles win over Faircloth and Rhetta Wenk. Camp and Katelin Klyn won that match 6-1, 6-0.
Megan Rachuy won five games from Holly VanderPol at No. 4 singles but lost 6-3, 6-2. At No. 5 singles, Kathleen Ferrin dropped her first set 7-5 before losing 6-2 in the final set. The other competitive set came from Ashley Beaty at No. 6 singles, but a second-set tiebreaking loss gave Newton’s Krystal Mapes the straight-set win.
“We’ll run some drills and now that we are outside consistently it will be easier to focus in on what needs to be worked on,” Paul said. “I can find something on every single player that needs to be worked on.”
The Bobcats’ doubles teams forced Newton to play a few extra games, but the Cardinals only went to a third set at No. 5 doubles. MHS sophomores Megan Riemenschneider and Yelitza Patricio won the first set 6-3 but then lost the final two, including a third-set tiebreaker that was 10-7 in favor of the visiting Cardinals.
“We can’t hit the ball right back to them. We need to hit where they aren’t,” Paul said.
It was easier for Paul to find the holes and weaknesses in his team when they are actually on the court playing against opponents instead of being forced to stay inside due to inclement weather.
“It really is. I am able to see things in the competition against Newton that I know we need to work on,” Paul said.
The Marshalltown junior varsity team lost 8-3. Wins were collected by Olyvia Mathews and Brenda Livengood, Taylor Whaley and Megan Emerson, and Victoria Sanchez and Cailyn Ernat in doubles action. “Brenda and Olyvia played really well and Taylor and Megan also played a good match,” said MHS JV coach Blake Cutright. “I was happy to see Victoria and Cailyn not lose a game in their final match.” … MHS will have a full week off before its next match. The Bobcats host West Des Moines Valley on Tuesday beginning at 4:15 p.m.