Chanhassen senior Hayley Haakenstad fell out of the girls’ tennis Class 2A individual rankings in the same week she came back from the ankle injury that had plagued her for most of the season.

Haakenstad had been ranked No. 1 until last week, when she fell completely out of the rankings.

“That was kind of weird because I was watching my team play and compete,” Haakenstad said. “But I really don’t focus too much on rankings.

Her position was based on her runner-up finish in the 2014 state tournament and being ranked No. 3 in the USTA Northern Section for girls 18-and-under.

She returned just in time to guide the Storm to two key team victories. She won at No. 1 singles as Chanhassen beat Eden Prairie and upset Class 2A, No. 4 Benilde-St. Margaret’s by identical 4-3 scores.

“That was a huge team victory,” she said of the triumph over Benilde.

Haakenstad said her game is in good shape despite her injury. And while a state championship is a goal, it’s not her sole focus.

“High school is such a special part of my tennis career,” she said. “I’m a very competitive person, but I’ve got a lot of other things I’m working on. I’ve been told that it goes by really fast, but you don’t realize it until you’re in that situation. I just want to enjoy every second.”

 

Jim Paulsen • 612-673-7737