VALLEY CITY, N.D. (Matt Nielson/NewsDakota.com) – Valley City hosted its first competition since March 13th of 2020. Derek Bear and Blake Triebold were the last to compete for the Hi-Liners at home before COVID and the first to compete at home upon our restart. On March 13th, Blake, Derek, and their robotics team dismantled NDSU in the HAC.
Today, these seniors contributed in beating Wahpeton on the tennis court by a score of 9-0.
The Hi-Liners only lost two sets the entire varsity match. Blake Triebold spent very little on time on the court at #1 singles as he defeated David Comings 6-0, 6-0. Triebold and Kai Kringlie teamed up for #1 doubles and the two won over Comings and Douglas Burvee 6-0, 6-2. Kringlie moved up from #3 doubles last season to the #1 doubles team fro the opener.
Seth Zeltinger, Trey Cope, Ethan Bear and Casey Kruger all won in straight sets. Derek Bear, at #3 singles won 6-2, 4-6, 11-9. Coach Matt Nielson had this to say about Derek.
“Derek moved from the #6 spot last season to the #3 spot today. He played the first set very well. He was down 2-1 and then won the next 5 games to win the set. He lost the second set. As the team match was decided, the third set was a super tiebreaker. Derek got down 5-1. At that point, he started to play loose and attacked the ball. He came back to tie it at 7-7 and then 9-9. He hit a winner to go up 10-9 and then his opponent hit it out to give Derek the match at 11-9. Great resilience Derek and way to invoke confidence in yourself when it seems hopeless down 5-1. It didn’t matter that he pulled out the match, it mattered that he never gave up and continued to figure things out even when the situation is bleak.”
Trey Cope, Ethan Bear and Casey Kruger were all making their varsity debuts for the Hi-Liners. Coach Nielson had this to say about the trio.
“We had three players play their first varsity matches ever today – Trey, Ethan, and Casey. Trey and Ethan played doubles together and had a second set hiccup. They were over hitting and overthinking instead of playing loose and hitting the solid smart shot in that second set. They found their groove in the third set by playing the smart, solid shot and didn’t drop a game to earn their first varsity victories ever. Casey started the match pretty even with his opponent. After an adjustment on a changeover, Casey started attacking the ball no matter if it was offensive, neutral, or defensive shot. This led to Casey controlling the ball much better. Casey took that control of the ball and dictated points throughout the match leading to a blow out victory.”
In doubles, Derek Bear and Seth Zeltinger teamed up at #2 and won in straight sets 6-1, 6-2. At #3 doubles, Trey Cope and Ethan Bear teamed up for a 6-2, 3-6, 6-0 win.
Coach Nielson had this to say about the match and the day as a whole. “I was worried about players and fans remembering and following COVID guidelines for the match, I didn’t need to be. Our players did great with the ball, masking, hand sanitizing, and social distancing guidance and so did Wahpeton’s players. Also, all of our fans from both teams were great. They maintained social distancing by family groups and wore masks. Everyone did their part in ensuring safety and following procedures so that we can continue to play and give our players the opportunity to continue. Thank you players and fans!