The fall tournament season is almost upon us as the Minnesota high school tennis seedings were announced today.
There were no surprises at the top of Section 6A as the 18-0 Osakis Silverstreaks were officially named the No. 1 seed this morning. Osakis wrapped up its perfect regular season with a 6-1 win over Parkers Prairie last night.
The Silverstreaks will take on the winner of Morris Area and West Central Area this Wednesday at 8 a.m. at the Gold’s Gym in St. Cloud. The tournament will wrap up the following day with the semifinals starting at 8 a.m. and the finals taking place at around noon.
“The key is for the girls to go out and play up to their capabilities,” Osakis head coach Ryan Maddock said. “And to play with confidence. If we can do that, we feel like we have a great shot to win the tournament.”
The Silverstreaks have come so close in the past but fallen short. They were the top seed entering the tournament last year, but were upended by perennial contender Staples-Motley in the finals.
Osakis will no longer have to deal with the Cardinals after they made the move to Section 8A this season. That opened the door a little more the rest of the section, but that doesn’t mean the Silverstreaks are taking the rest of the field lightly.
“We don’t necessarily feel like it is meant to be our year,” Maddock said. “We have to make it our year through our play. We know that there are other teams with a lot of talent and heart as well. We know we will have to play well, be aggressive at appropriate times and go out and earn the title. No one is handing us anything.”
Second-seeded Melrose could be the team that poses the greatest challenge for Osakis. The Dutchmen have lost twice to the Silverstreaks this year but played them tough in a 4-3 match earlier this week. Sauk Centre was named the third seed, while Long Prairie-Grey Eagle/Upsala-Swanville Area rounds out the top four seeds in the section.
“A state tournament trip always means a lot,” Maddock said. “So that’s what we will be playing hard for. Most of the girls on our team have had that experience through track and softball, so they know what it takes to win. We feel like we have a great opportunity this year, but we know we will have to earn it.”