Girls' tennis: Three story lines

  • Article by: JIM PAULSEN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 28, 2012 - 1:04 AM

A look at the upcoming season in girls' tennis.

Edina's Maddie Boyer.

Photo: Marlin Levison, Dml - Star Tribune

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1 Tennis finally seeds: The Minnesota State High School League has allowed at least partial seeding of state tournaments since 2005, so it seems strange that it has taken until 2012 for the practice to reach tennis, a sport with which seeding is traditionally associated.

On the recommendation of the coaches association, the MSHSL has approved seeding for all future girls' and boys' state tournaments. Beginning this fall, coaches will seed the entire Class 2A tournament and the Class 1A individual tournament. In each bracket, a top four will be selected and placed opposite each other. The remainder of the field will be determined based other criteria, such as avoiding having section champions play each other and having section champions always facing section runners-up.

In 1A, coaches chose not to seed the team tournament as a nod to public-school coaches, who have long felt that they are at a competitive disadvantage with private-school teams and wanted to retain the randomness of the tournament.

2 Edina is NOT No. 1: Considering that Edina has won 15 consecutive 2A team titles and is likely to win another, this is a bit of a reach.

But, according to the National Federation of High Schools record book, Edina, with 30 state titles overall, is second nationally to Honolulu Punahou School, which has won 35 girls' tennis state championships in Hawaii. So, the Hornets' remarkable successful program still has a goal to attain.

Interesting side note: Mike Cartwright, Mounds View's longtime and highly successful boys' and girls' coach, is a Punahou graduate.

3 Alive and well in the city: Thanks to programs like Inner City Tennis at the Reed-Sweatt Tennis Center in Minneapolis, tennis, often thought of as a country-club sport, is thriving at city schools. Minneapolis South, Southwest and St. Paul Harding have been consistently churning out top top teams. Last spring, the St. Paul City Conference advanced two boys to the Class 2A state tournament for the first time. This fall, players such as Helen Klass-Warch of St. Paul Central and Mikayla Rogers of St. Paul Highland Park could duplicate the feat.

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