Tennis season winds down for area teams

The regular season in boys tennis ended without much fanfare this spring for the local teams, and the sectional playoffs are already underway.
Here’s a recap of Hill-Murray, North and Tartan’s performance in the Metro East Conference.


Senior captains Griffin Egan and Ricky Zellmer anchored the Pioneers throughout the season.

Egan held the No. 1 singles spot throughout the season, while Zellmer played this past season at the No. 1 doubles position.

“Although our record was not very good in terms of wins and losses [1-11], we did have some players play well and compete hard,” said Hill-Murray head coach Dan Stumpf.

Stumpf then praised Egan and Zellmer, and also mentioned No. 2 singles ace Jonah Rueb. He said the sophomore “had the most wins on the team thus far. Jonah plays a really consistent baseline game and has a very consistent serve.”

Stumpf went on to cite Ethan McElvain. “He’s a junior who played opposite of Zellmer and has learned a great deal playing in a high position on the team to prepare his skills for next season. He is an outstanding serve and volley player.”

Other players for Hill-Murray that Stumpf said “contributed consistently this year” were juniors Matt Dahl and Jack Butler at No. 2 doubles; Christian Williams, who alternated between No. 3 and No. 4 singles, and sophomore Jay Salinas.

At third doubles, six players rotated playing those two positions.

North High

The Polars finished the season with a conference mark of 2-6. The two North High wins came at the hands of rivals Hill-Murray and Tartan.

Head coach Jerry Diebel said, “We have a pretty strong conference, especially with the addition of Hastings.

“My team has really played hard and has been involved in some great matches” this spring, Diebel said.

 “My seniors — Ben Horstman, Takato Nakamishi, Marty Dinh, Andrew Gooder, Colin Cassin and Meipong Himmtann — will be missed next season. We will need our returning players to improve over the next year to fill those sports.”


The Tartan Titans finished the season with an overall record of 3-11. They went 0-8 in MEC play.

Veteran coach Larry Fronczak said, “In Section 4AA play we won our first round 4-3 against Johnson. We lost the second round against No. 5-seed Roseville, 1-6.”

Against the Raiders the lone victory was put on the board at first singles when Brody Croonquist gained a two-set — 6-3, 6-4 — triumph.

During the season Croonquist, a senior, finished first singles play with a mark of 5-9.

At second singles senior Austin Bullard went 3-9 and was followed by eighth-grader Gavin Stephenson (4-10) at fourth singles, and Elijah Vang (4-10) at first doubles.

Other players on the Tartan squad, who will be returning next season, include Vinh Nguyen (11th-grade), Ryan Lenard (10th),  Chris Bade (10th), Ben Carpenter (10th), Matt Zawislak (10th), Ethan Thao (9th) and Bennett Poganski (9th).

Wally Wakefield can be reached at or at 651-748-7820.


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