You’ve Been Served


Lakeland Hawks tennis dominated the district matches with two doubles teams and one single moving on to participate in the state tournament on May 19. The boy’s doubles, Cole Andres and Brady Hanna placed first in districts along with the girl’s doubles, Ellie Carlson and Addie Raebel. This was followed by Ben Ryan placing second in the boy’s singles and clinching a state appearance of their own. The three teams have consistently worked hard throughout the season, and it not only shows what they are capable of achieving in state but also represents Lakeland well. 

The boy’s doubles team, Andres and Hanna, had a great season, only losing one match as a team. They are currently the number one seed for state. “It was a great experience to finally win the district tournament instead of coming up second as I have for the past two years,” Hanna said. As seniors making it to state, it set a good example for the younger, upcoming varsity athletes, as well as the returners. 

Andres and Hanna won both of the first two matches 6-0, despite their struggle in the second match. “Going into the first match, we knew we had to play confident and consistent. That’s exactly what we did,” Andres said. 

Setting a good mentality going into these district matches was as crucial as their physical skills. Their top-tier mindsets only lasted so long as the two got in their own heads during the second match. “Sandpoint played better than in the first match, so it threw us off a bit,” Andres said. 

Because of this, they did not play as confident but still managed to pull through. They won both sets of the second match 6-4. securing their spot in state.

“This tournament helped us figure out that even when we do not play our best, we can still have the right mentality to battle through it. This is going to be important for state,” Hanna said. The confident mentality was something that the girl’s doubles team did well in, too, as they competed for a spot in state. 

This is the first time Carlson and Raebel have won the district tournament, which shows just how much they have improved, both physically and mentally. “Going into the game, our word was relentless. Whenever we were struggling, we would remind ourselves not to give up. This really helped up through these matches,” Carlson said. 

The two girl’s doubles teams, Lakeland and Sandpoint, played pretty even with each other in regard to scoring throughout both matches. It was a huge relief when Carlson and Raebel won two 10-point tiebreakers. “We were ranked number two in districts and came out number one. It showed that our reminders to be relentless really worked,” Raebel said. 

“We just need to stay confident, believe in our abilities, and have fun,” Carlson said. Ryan noted that he has never had state-level competition as a singles player. 

“This is the first time I’ve ever played singles, and it has been going really well. I have had a lot of fun,” Ryan said. Ryan stuck with what he knew as he faced his competition in districts. “Going into the matches, I knew I could win as long as I did not get in my head, which I did successfully for the most part,” Ryan said. 

He played great in the first two matches but struggled in the last two; however, he came out on top as he placed second in the boy’s singles overall. Ryan plans to just play the game and not worry about his opponents. “I’m just going to play my game. I’m not going to switch off my style because of the competition,” Ryan said. 

The head coach William Ryan expects full effort and for these student-athletes to represent Lakeland well. Despite this, there is one more key factor that Ryan wants these athletes to incorporate into their playing. “For state, I want it to be a fun trip for these students. They’ve earned it,” Ryan said.