A yr in the past, the Yankton boys’ tennis group used a sub-par efficiency within the Eastern South Dakota Conference Championships to gasoline them to a runner-up end at state.
This yr, the ESD champion Bucks wish to use their success as gasoline to a good higher end.
Yankton begins play within the South Dakota State Class A boys’ tennis event on Monday in Rapid City. Play might be at Sioux Park and the Parkview Tennis Complex, starting at 9 a.m. Central every day.
The Bucks gained this system’s first-ever ESD title on Tuesday in Huron.
“This group of guys had put that goal out there a couple of years ago. Then we had the COID year,” mentioned Yankton head coach Ryan Hage. “They didn’t forget the following year, but we didn’t play as good as we’d hoped.”
Yankton gained 4 singles and a doubles title at ESD, taking part in for titles at two different flights. The two flights the place the Bucks didn’t play for a convention title, the Bucks gained the comfort crown.
“It was great. I’ve been on the team since seventh grade, and we’ve been chasing this for a few years,” mentioned senior Gage Becker. “Last year we didn’t have the showing we wanted. To have it this year was really rewarding.”
The Bucks have a veteran lineup, with three seniors taking part in each doubles and singles, and a fourth senior taking part in doubles. In singles, Becker (21-4, flight one) and Keaton List (22-2, flight 5) every gained ESD titles, with Ryan Schulte (15-10, flight two) incomes a comfort title.
Freshman Zach Briggs (23-2, flight three) and eighth grader Harrison Krajewski (19-4, flight 4) additionally gained ESD titles in singles. Sophomore Miles Krajewski (20-5) was runner-up at flight six.
In doubles, Becker and Briggs (18-4) gained the flight one title, Harrison Krajewski and senior Dylan Ridgway (17-4) had been second at flight three, and List and Schulte (18-5) had been comfort champs at flight two.
“When things didn’t go well, others stepped up,” Hage mentioned. “That’s the sign of a mature team.”
A season in the past, Harrison Krajewski was the flight 5 singles champion at state. Briggs and Harrison Krajewski gained the flight three doubles crown.
Also at state in 2021, Becker was third at flight one singles, Briggs was second at flight three, Schulte was second at flight 4 and Miles Krajewski was fourth at flight six. In doubles, List and Schulte had been second at flight two doubles.
While the Bucks enter this yr’s state event with rather more momentum than a yr in the past, Hage has cautioned them to remain vigilant.
“Not everything went our way at ESD,” he mentioned. “When you throw in the teams outside the ESD, there is depth that can pull team points away.
“I told the guys to be focused on their own game, focus on competing at a high level individually,” Hage added. “Then they’ll be doing their job for the team.”
With the ESD championship banner of their nook, the Bucks might be a goal at state, famous Becker.
“Every team is gunning for us,” he mentioned. “We need to play our hearts out. It’s not all about one guy, it’s a team effort, with everyone doing their job.
“If we do our job, the rest will fall into place.”
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