SARTELL — Senior Megan Hintz and junior Sara Wennerstrand cruised through the Section 8-2A doubles bracket Saturday.
When they finally finished they were the owners of a section title as they battled to a 6-1, 6-1 victory in the championship round to advance to the Class 2A state tournament.
Hintz-Wennerstrand downed the St. Cloud Tech team of Leah Wurm-Sam Eisenreich in the final round to advance to their first state tournament as a doubles pair.
“They were both part of the state team the last two years, but this is their first time going as individuals,” said Brainerd head coach Ellen Fussy. “The coaches and I felt that if they played like they were capable they would be in the mix. They were the No. 1 seed in the north, but (Saturday they just played better after each match. Then they played their best against Tech for the championship. They really came ready to play. The started off strong and their serves were right on. They hadn’t served that well before, but they did in the final. It was fun to see them take control of the match early.”
The Brainerd duo didn’t drop a set throughout the tournament eliminating Kaci Walvatne-Morgan Daniels of Fergus Falls 6-1, 6-3, Whitney Benscoter-Shantel Kluenenberg of Detroit Lakes 6-0, 6-1, Brooke Volpone-Anne Dockendorf of Monticello 6-0, 6-3 and Olivia Dickinson-Annika Johnson of Bemidji 6-3, 6-0 in the semifinals.
“They’re a good doubles team,” Fussy said. “They played some good teams along the way, but they were just steady. The played how they should play. They both are good tennis players. Going into the week I felt they were good enough, but after each match their confidence kept growing and then they saved their best tennis for the last match so that was fun.”
Brainerd’s other doubles team of Morgan and Caitlin Steffen won its opening-round match against Alyssa Athman-Lindsey Schneider of Little Falls before falling in the second round.
Brainerd’s Natalie Comeau and Jamie Jenks of Little Falls also won first round matches before losing in the second round.
Jamie Jenks (LF) def. Katie Anderson (Detroit Lakes) 6-4, 4-6, 6-2
Jessica Solberg (Bem) def. RoseMary Hunter (Brd) 6-0, 6-0
Carly Lunsetter (Thief River Falls) def. Angela Meschke (Little Falls) 6-3, 6-0
Natalie Comeau (Brd) def. Sam Velde (Fergus Falls) 6-1, 6-2
Ellie Bergstrand (Alexandria) def. Jenks (LF) 6-2, 6-1
Karlee Jorgenson (Thief River Falls) def. Comeau (Brd) 6-1, 6-0
Morgan Steffen-Caitlin Steffen (Brd) def. Alyssa Athman-Lindsey Schneider (Little Falls) 6-0, 6-2
Megan Hintz-Sara Wennerstrand (Brd) def. Kaci Walvatne-Morgan Daniels (Fergus Falls) 6-1, 6-3
Whitney Benscoter-Shantel Kluenenberg (Detroit Lakes) def. Mikayla Gottwalt-Katelynn Kanieski (Little Falls) 6-3, 7-5
Sabrina Okeson-Kora Torkelson (Thief River Falls) def. Steffen-Steffen (Brd) 6-2, 6-3
Hintz-Wennerstrand (Brd) def. Benscoter-Kluenenberg (DL) 6-0, 6-1
Hintz-Wennerstrand (Brd) def, Brooke Volpone-Ane Dockendorf (Monticello) 6-0, 6-3
Hintz-Wennerstrand (Brd) def. Olivia Dickinson-Annika Johnson (Bemidji) 6-3, 6-0
Hintz-Wennerstrand (Brd) def. Leah Wurm-Sam Eisenreich (St. Cloud Tech) 6-1, 6-1