Mical Johnson had quite a Friday at the girls state tennis tournament.
The Sioux Falls Washington sophomore partnered with junior Berkley Darr to spill Sydney Moyle and Taylor Messinger of Rapid City Stevens in a tense 6-4, 4-6, 11-9 Flight 1 doubles semifinal match, then had little time to recoup before facing Sioux Falls O’Gorman’s Jenna Czarnecki in a Flight 2 singles semifinal.
Johnson rallied from a 4-1 deficit in the second set to win 6-3, 7-5, to close out the second day of the three-day tournament at Sioux Park.
“My partner and I, we worked really hard to get to the net and be aggressive,” Johnson said of the doubles triumph. “When we got to the tie-break, we said ‘this is what we worked all season for, we can’t be afraid, we can’t be nervous.’”
Johnson said she had to fight off cold and fatigue to rally against Czarnecki.
“It was all mental. It was me fighting against my tired body from doubles. But Jenna played well. It was a good match,” Johnson said.
Johnson will play Messinger for the Flight 2 singles championship today at Sioux Park.
Moyle will face Morgan Brower of Sioux Falls O’Gorman for the Flight 1 title.
The Raider and Knights will also match up for the Flight 3 title, with Stevens’ Kristina Hammerquist and Sidney Brower deciding the title.
Stevens head coach Jason Olson said the Raiders were only favored in Flight 1 doubles.
“We came back in the singles and won five of the six matches we played, so that was big to come back that way. We knew things would have to go perfectly for us to have a chance at O’Gorman, they’re so loaded. We can’t worry about anyone else tomorrow. We just have to go out and get some points in matches,” Olson said.
Roosevelt’s Abby Siegenthaler will play Samantha Czarnecki in the Flight 4 finals. Lexy Ronning of Roosevelt will play Abi Kosiak of O’Gorman in Flight 6.
Ashley Thone of Aberdeen Central will face the Knights’ Mary Billion at Flight 5. The Rough Riders also gained the finals in Flight 2 and Flight 3 doubles.
O’Gorman gained the finals in seven of the nine flights and has a 63-point lead over Stevens and Sioux Falls Roosevelt.
Along with Jenna Czarnecki’s loss in singles, the Knights suffered a semifinal loss in Flight 2 doubles when Sidney Brower and Samantha Czarnecki lost to Brandon Valley’s Erin Buse and Jessica Sadler, who will play Brittany Kortan and Kasey Shogren of Roosevelt in the finals.
“It’s down to one match in singles and one match in doubles. We just have to keep playing and not think that anything is done yet,” O’Gorman head coach Don Barnes said.
St. Thomas More’s Catherine Gibbens (Flight 1), Grace Goble (Flight 3) Madison Fenske (Flight 4) and Megan Fenske (Flight 4) will all play for third place in their respective flights. Goble and Megan Fenske will vie for third place at Flight 3 doubles.
“We had a great day. Catherine played a lot of deuce points and it just didn’t go her way today,” More head coach Laurie Lingor said. “A good finish. A nice strong finish.”
Rapid City Central’s young team rallied from Thursday losses to earn a berth in three consolation round finals offering a spot on the awards podium after Saturday’s finals.
Kendall Tucker will face Sarah Rockne of Yankton at Flight 1 singles. Tianna Duda and Diana Peck of Aberdeen Central will play in Flight 2. Tucker and Duda will Hericks and Vochal of Watertown in Flight 1 doubles.
“Long day, but we’ll take my young girls on that podium run and see where they go with it. They’ve earned the right to be at that opportunity and we’ll take it,” Cobbler coach Mark Sonnenfeld said.