Taylor Herfindahl of Albert Lea swings at the ball during the No. 1 singles match Tuesday against Owatonna at Albert Lea. Herfindahl won, but Albert Lea lost 4-3. — Micah Bader/Albert Lea Tribune
Taylor Herfindahl of Albert Lea swings at the ball during the No. 1 singles match Tuesday against Owatonna at Albert Lea. Herfindahl won, but Albert Lea lost 4-3. — Micah Bader/Albert Lea Tribune

Huskies slip past Tigers

Published 7:46pm Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Wins at No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles weren’t enough to push the Albert Lea boys’ tennis team past Owatonna Tuesday at home.

The Huskies slipped past the Tigers, 4-3.

“We gave Owatonna a really good match today,” said Albert Lea coach Tom Dyrdal. “This was the best match we’ve had with them in a few years.”

Taylor Herfindahl led the Tigers with a 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 win at No. 1 singles. Herfindahl moved up from No. 2 singles last year to No. 1 this year. He said he feels comfortable as a sophomore in the top spot.

“(I was) getting top spin on the first serve, getting it in deep and attacking with the short ball,” he said.

Dyrdal said Herfindahl selected the right moments to make big hits.

“Taylor did a nice job of keeping the ball in play, being safe when he had to and attacking when he had the opportunity,” he said.

Cole Keyeski moved from No. 4 singles last season to No. 2 this year. He tested his Owatonna opponent but lost 3-6, 2-6.

In doubles action, the Tigers earned wins at the No. 1 and No. 2 spots.

Carter Dahl played No. 1 doubles last season with departed senior Kyle Zogg. This year, he’s paired with Collin Jahnke — who played No. 2 doubles last year — and the duo has yet to lose through four matches this year.

“We couldn’t have asked to have it any better so far,” Dahl said.

At No. 2 doubles, Garrett Matz and Foster Otten won with a 7-6, 6-1 score. Matz — who is also the goalie on the Albert Lea boys’ hockey team — was sidelined all of last season with an injury, but he’s back at full strength this year.

“Matz and Otten played well together and look like they can be a solid No. 2 doubles team for us,” Dyrdal said.

Aside from Tuesday’s loss, the Tigers (2-2) posted a 5-2 win at Stewartville, a 6-1 win at New Prague, and a 4-3 loss at Austin.

Next, Albert Lea will play at 4:30 p.m. Thursday at Faribault.

Statistics are in the Scoreboard: April 15 post.