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Kernel tennis falls to powerhouse Patriots

SIOUX FALLS--The Mitchell High School boys tennis team ran into a juggernaut on Monday. Sioux Falls Lincoln, which has won the last five Class AA state titles, blanked the Kernels 9-0 in a tennis dual. "Lincoln is the best team in the state and t...

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SIOUX FALLS-The Mitchell High School boys tennis team ran into a juggernaut on Monday.

Sioux Falls Lincoln, which has won the last five Class AA state titles, blanked the Kernels 9-0 in a tennis dual.

"Lincoln is the best team in the state and they proved it (Monday) against us," Mitchell coach Pat Moller said. "They are just better than us. I don't know what else to say. They played this weekend in the metro tournament with all the Sioux Falls and Sioux Falls-area teams and they never lost a match the whole tournament."

The Patriots didn't lose a match on Monday either. The Kernels didn't win a single set against the powerhouse, but Moller did point out some positives from the dual.

"I like the way we played doubles and we came out and attacked," Moller said. "If we can continue to play that aggressive style of tennis, we should do pretty well in the ESD and the state tournament."

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Despite the sweep, Moller praised the play of Macon Larson in No. 4 singles and Larson and Ben Helleloid in No. 3 doubles.

"They are just better than we are," Moller said. "We kind of knew that going in and so our focus was to work on things and we really focused on doubles and our doubles play."

Up next, the Kernels (17-4) will play in the Brandon Valley Triangular today against the Lynx and Yankton.

"Yankton already beat us once this year and hopefully our guys can get a little fire in our belly and get fired up for this," Moller said. "There's a lot of ESD seeding implications in this triangular and every match we can win is going to help us position ourselves for that ESD tournament on Thursday."

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