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Dickinson picks up wins to punch ticket to state tournament

BISMARCK — The Dickinson High girls tennis team was ready to play from the get-go.

The Midgets’ focus proved to be the determining factor.

Dickinson picked up wins against Bismarck High and Williston to place fourth as a team and to qualify for the Class A state tournament during the West Region Tournament on Thursday.

“They set the tone by lining up against Bismarck and beating them,” Dickinson head coach James Kramer said. “It truly was a really well-rounded day for the whole team.”

The Midgets defeated the Demons 4-1 to open the tournament and closed out the day with a 3-2 victory over Williston. Bismarck St. Mary’s topped Dickinson 4-1 during the West Region semifinals. The Midgets will enter the state tournament as the No. 4 seed.

Kramer said it was a total team effort as every player picked up at least one win. The No. 1 doubles team of seniors Mariah Jorda and McKenna Love won all three of their matches.

“Honestly, it was a team effort,” Kramer said. “Everyone won a match today. We used the same lineup all three matches. That’s just the way it worked out. We had multiple lineups ready to go, but that’s just the way it work out that we used the same lineup.”

Dickinson junior Meryl Kovacs collected a pair of wins at No. 2 singles, while senior Lindsey Bakken and junior Kayla Wallace each picked up a win at Nos. 1 and 3 singles, respectively. The No. 2 doubles team of sophomore Ireland Jung and senior Shealynn Roller had one win.

The Midgets continue the West Region with individual day at 8 a.m. today in Bismarck. Kramer said the team is brimming with excitement.

“I reminded them of last year that we lost that state play-in match to Bismarck,” Kramer said. “I remember the feeling the girls had and it carried over to the next morning. I talked to them after the matches and said, ‘The team goal is only one of our goals. Our next goal is to get as many individually qualified as we can.’ We have to keep the highs high, but we need to line back up (today) and start all over again, because we have to prove ourselves again (today).”

Dickinson 4, Bismarck High 1

Singles: 1, Lindsey Bakken, D, def. Jenna Andre, 4-6 (7-8), 6-4, 6-1. 2, Meryl Kovacs, D, def. Rachel Schumaier, 7-6, (7-0), 6-4. 3, Lauryn Andre, B, def. Kayla Wallace, 6-1, 6-3.

Doubles: 1, Mariah Jorda/McKenna Love, D, def. Skyler LaFave/Kayla Steffes, 6-1, 3-6, 6-4. 2, Ireland Jung/Shealynn Roller, D, def. Carissa Craven/Shelby Schmaltz, 6-0, 6-3.

Bismarck St. Mary’s 4, Dickinson 1

Singles: 1, Caitlin Bakke, SM, def. Lindsey Bakken, 6-0, 6-0. 2, Alicia Beck, SM, def. Meryl Kovacs, 6-1, 6-1. 3, Mary Roller, SM, def. Kayla Wallace, 6-2, 6-0.

Doubles: 1, Mariah Jorda/McKenna Love, D, def. Karen Stiegelmeier/Regan Bradley, 6-1, 6-1. 2, Emily Bichler/Ashley Kilzer, SM, def. Ireland Jung/Shealynn Roller, 6-1, 6-0.

Dickinson 3, Williston 2

Singles: 1, Keyanna Enget, W, def. Lindsey Bakken, 6-1, 6-1. 2, Meryl Kovas, D, def. Jami Wells, 6-0, 6-0. 3, Kayla Wallace, D, def. Caitlyn Hunter, 6-2, 7-5. 4, . 5, . 6, .

Doubles: 1, Mariah Jorda/McKenna Love, D, def. Keely Kleven/Bethanie Pippin, 6-2, 6-4. 2, Kaylen Barstad/Jocelyn Lysne, W, def. Ireland Jung/Shealynn Roller, 6-2, 3-6, 7-5.