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Shorthanded Gwinn netters give a good show at Gladstone

Gwinn’s Lily Kerry returns the ball during the No. 2 singles match against Gladstone on Wednesday at the Braves’ courts. (Escanaba Daily Press photo by Justin St. Ours)

GLADSTONE — The Gwinn girls provided a few challenges, but Gladstone proved equal to those here Wednesday in a 4-1 tennis victory over the shorthanded Modeltowners.

Braves’ senior Kate Matthews overcame a 5-1 deficit in the second set in a 6-1, 7-5 triumph over sophomore Lily Kerry at No. 2 singles on a sunny, warm and windy afternoon.

“She was real determined and I was very tense in the second set,” said Matthews. “I couldn’t adjust to the wind at first…. It was a very competitive match. She’s a real good player.”

The lone three-set match took place at No. 3 singles where junior Madelyn Brady got the Modeltowners on the board with a 6-0, 5-7, 6-2 victory over Gladstone sophomore Rachel Krouth.

“In the second set, it seemed like she got a burst of energy and I felt a little tired,” Brady said. “She did amazing. We’re very evenly matched. We often went down to the last point.”

The victory enabled Brady to improve to 2-1 this season.

“I felt I was better than last year, only I didn’t know how good that was,” Brady said. “I think our courts are amazing. It’s nice to have new courts at our school.”

Gwinn coach Darcia Mattson was happy to see the Modeltowners get on the board.

“That was a big confidence boost for us,” Mattson said. “We lost six seniors from last year’s team and two moved out of the area. We have eight on our roster, but today we played only seven. We haven’t been able to recruit players and do camps due to COVID-19. We’re doing this for the girls who are here.”

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