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Miners nearing perfection in pair of 8-0 shutouts

NEGAUNEE — Whether it’s too early to, the Negaunee High School girls tennis team sure seems to be peaking this week.

The Miners posted a pair of 8-0 shutouts at home this week over Kingsford and Iron Mountain, which only told part of a story of domination.

Negaunee dropped just one game total in four singles flights in Tuesday’s win over Kingsford, then only lost 14 games total in all eight flights together in Thursday’s victory over IM.

Negaunee plays a makeup match in Marquette at 3 p.m. today.

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Negaunee 8, Kingsford 0

The Miners’ domination in singles began at No. 1, where Lilly Nelson won 6-0, 6-0. The same blanking was put up by No. 2 Jillian Skewis and No. 3 Lexi Mason. Hopefully, No. 4 Annika Tervo didn’t feel she let her teammates down with an otherwise sterling 6-0, 6-1 victory over Kingsford’s Kylie Mitchell.

“Lexi has continued to play steady all season long,” Saari said. “She’s very consistent and stays level-headed, so you always know what you’re going to get.”

Negaunee netters got a bit of a test in several doubles matches, including the 6-2, 7-5 win posted by the No. 2 tandem of Tianna Williams and Shayla Williams over Liz Penegor and Jenna Olkkonen.

“Tianna and Shayla have done a terrific job whenever matches get tight,” their coach said. “They have good chemistry and really balance each other out.”

The Miners won every match in straight sets, the next closest being a 6-3, 6-4 win posted by the No. 3 duo of Emma Miller and Madi Austin over Brooke Bittinger and Macy Holmes.

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Negaunee 8, Iron Mountain 0

“Up to this point this was one of our best all around team efforts,” Saari said about Thursday. “It seems everyone hit the ball real solid and we moved real well, too. Now it’s important to continue carrying it over.”

He was also happy about Izzy Kantola moving into the No. 4 doubles tandem with Daylyn Drew after they won 6-0, 6-1, while adding comments about the work done by the No. 1 duo of Morgan Carlson and Katelyn Laami, who also won 6-0, 6-1.

“Izzy stepped in at (No.) 4 … and didn’t miss a beat with Daylyn,” Saari said. “Morgan and Katelyn are trying to add some tools to their game, too.”

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.

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