Trio of Irish players qualify for state tennis tournament
Rosemount's Virginia Norder qualified for next week's Class 2A state tennis tournament as a singles player, while Makayla Newberry and Ally Baker advanced in doubles play.
Norder, the Class 2A, Section 3 No. 1 seed in the singles tournament, qualified by beating Apple Valley's Irene Chen in match for true second. Norder, a ninth-grader, was undefeated through the tournament before dropping a match against Eagan's Danielle Donahue in the finals.
Against Chen, Norder won 6-1, 7-5 to advance to state for the second straight year.
Newberry and Baker came back through the bracket after losing in the semifinals against the No. 1 seed from Visitation. Newberry and Baker were down one set and trailing 4-1 in the second set of the third-place match, but came back to win the second set and earned the win with a 7-5 victory in the third set. Visitation eventually beat Eagan in the finals, setting up the Irish players with a match against Eagan for the right to go to state.
Newberry and Baker lost the first set against Eagan, but came back for a 6-4, 7-6 (7-4) win to qualify for state for the first time.
Newberry, a senior, and Baker, a ninth-grader, were the No. 4 seed entering the tournament, but upset the No. 2 and 3 seeds to advance.
"What a wonderful night for Rosemount Tennis," Irish coach Dana Beck said.
The trio will compete in the Class 2A individual tournament on Oct. 28 and 29 at the Baseline Tennis Center at the University of Minnesota.