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Kernels win two of three doubles matches

RAPID CITY—Freezing rain and mid-30 degree weather forced the South Dakota girls state tennis tournament indoors before moving outside in the afternoon. The tournament also fit in an unexpected extra round of consolation singles, which saw three Kernels advance to the consolation semifinals.

"We played some matches we weren't expecting to play (Thursday)," MHS head coach Pat Moller said. "Everyone was kind of scrambling, but when the weather's bad like that you have to adapt, and that's what we did."

As a team, Mitchell moved up to eighth place with 208 points. Rapid City Stevens, Sioux Falls O'Gorman and Sioux Falls Lincoln are tied for first with 300 points.

Avery Larson (Flight 1), Kelsey Dahme (Flight 2) and Atlanta Stahle (Flight 5) all won two matches on the consolation side of the bracket to stay alive and advance to the consolation semifinals.

"Consolation matches kind of show some character of our girls to not just roll over and give up," Moller said. "They battled back and won a couple of matches, and that's a big thing."

However, Kiersten Bathke (Flight 4) lost her first match and was eliminated, while Madison Bohlen (Flight 3) and Olivia Huber (Flight 6) didn't play today on the championship side due to weather.

Mitchell found success on the doubles side, as well, winning two of three matches. Bohlen and Bathke won in Flight 2, while Stahle and Amber Moller advanced to the quarterfinals in Flight 3.

"They both won matches they were supposed to win," Moller said. "We had some success, which has been tough to find this tournament it seems like. They're just ready to continue to play."

Although, the Kernels' top doubles pair in Larson and Dahme suffered a loss to Watertown's Megan Fannin and Abbi Cummings and will play in the consolation bracket.

The Kernels continue play at the state tournament today, but weather will determine whether it's played indoors or outdoors.