They didn't start the season together, but Amanda DiGiovanni and Kim Mosack concluded a successful season together.
The two Staples-Motley Cardinals combined to form the school's No. 1 doubles team.
"We started playing together probably the last three-quarters of the year," said DiGiovanni. "We're friends. We're used to playing with each other. It was pretty easy to become familiar with her. She's a really strong doubles player so I can count on her a lot."
While DiGiovanni has been one of S-M's best doubles players since joining the varsity in eighth grade, Mosack has been a utility player. She has bounced from doubles to singles, until finally securing her spot with DiGiovanni.
"We were able to move Kim over to doubles because we had some singles players step up," said Cardinals coach Kevin Coughlin. "Kim's move allowed us to strengthen our doubles teams.
"For the most part Kim is such a great athlete that she can play anywhere."
The two helped the Cardinals advance to the Section 8 team championship. They defeated Kassie Pesch-Amy Neels 6-4, 6-1 in a 7-0 pounding of Perham in the South Subsection 8, Class 1A team semifinals Oct. 11.
In the championship round, Mosack-DiGiovanni again beat Amy Luther-Lindsey Czeczok 6-3, 6-1 in a 7-0 Cardinals win over Park Rapids.
"I think we stepped up our game the last couple of weeks," said DiGiovanni.
"We have fun playing together and we communicate well. We want to win."
That's what the two seniors did Oct. 15 as they swept through the South Subsection 8, Class 1A individual tournament. They beat Wadena-Deer Creek's Darci Uselman-Jenny Kraemer 6-0, 6-2 in the quarterfinals.
In the semifinals they dispatched Jenna Pike-Megan Yliniemi of Park Rapids 6-1, 6-1, then topped off Czeczok-Luther of Park Rapids 7-6 (7-3), 5-7, 6-3 to win the championship.
Amanda DiGiovanni and Kim Mosack formed Staples-Motley's No. 1 tennis doubles team.
"They came out a lot stronger than in the team subsections," said DiGiovanni. "We came out in the third set and we changed our game a little. They played pretty good, but we probably didn't have our best game right away."
It was the sixth straight victory for the twosome.
"I watched both matches and the first one the girls were really in a groove," said Coughlin. "In the second, not that we didn't play well, Park Rapids played well. But what I was impressed with was the perseverance to get back that focus to get on top.
"It was probably more of the mental game that was impressive in the second match."
DiGiovanni has been impressive all season. Coughlin said she has the ability to do many things. Coughlin also considers the multi-talented DiGiovanni to be the caretaker of the team, the one who makes sure everyone on the team is reaching her potential.
Other notable performances:
Cross country -- Ashley Prososki, Pine River-Backus, won the Birch Tree Conference championship in 17:12.
Jamie Talberg, Pierz, won the Central Minnesota Conference championship in 15:19.
Tennis -- Jacque Peterson, Staples-Motley, finished the week 5-0 and won the South Subsection 8, Class 1A title.
Volleyball -- Lara Marvin, PR-B, had 24 set assists and three ace serves against Aitkin. Marvin added 43 set assists, seven digs, one kill and one ace serve against Crosby-Ironton.
Jenae Swanson, Pierz, collected 21 set assists, 13 digs, two ace serves and one kill against Braham. Swanson added 15 set assists, six ace serves and five digs against Kimball.
Kristin Willer, Pequot Lakes, had 21 digs, 16 kills, three blocks and three ace serves against Walker-Hackensack-Akeley. She added 17 digs, 10 kills and two ace serves against Pequot Lakes.
JEREMY MILLSOP can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5856.
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