Mayo’s Claire Loftus breezes into state singles semifinals

On October 26th, Claire Loftus demonstrated her tennis prowess in the Class 2A girls individual tennis tournament held at the University of Minnesota’s Baseline Tennis Center.

Ranked second in the state, the Mayo junior easily advanced through the first two rounds of the tournament. In the first round, she secured a 6-2, 6-1 victory, followed by a dominant 6-0, 6-0 win in the quarterfinals. The upcoming semifinals at 8 a.m. on Friday will see Loftus, the second seed, face off against Elk River’s No. 3 seed, Ava Nelson. The highly anticipated championship and third-place matches will begin at 11:30 a.m.

Interestingly, Claire’s younger sister, Aoife, also had a successful day, winning both of her matches. As the tournament’s No. 5 seed, Aoife triumphed effortlessly in the first round. Her second match against No. 4 seed Lucy Nabedrick of Wayzata proved more challenging, but Aoife ultimately claimed victory with a thrilling comeback, winning 3-6, 6-2, 6-3. Next, she will compete against Eagan’s No. 1 seed, Cassandra Li, in the semifinals.

Furthermore, Mayo’s No. 1-seeded doubles team, Malena Diehn and Keely Ryder, experienced little resistance in their first two rounds, cruising to victories of 6-0, 6-1 and 6-1, 6-0.

In the Class 1A individual meet at the Reed-Sweatt Tennis Center, Lourdes’ No. 3-seeded doubles team, Caroline Daly and Elyse Palen, had an easy time in their first two rounds and are set to participate in Friday’s semifinals.

Lourdes teammates Erin Witter and Taylor Elliott, who were unseeded, won their opening match but unfortunately fell in a closely contested quarterfinal match against No. 4 seed Ronnie Noska and Lauren Rutten of Staples-Motley, losing 6-1, 4-6, 6-1.

In the singles category, Winona Cotter’s Emma Hageman showcased her impressive skills. After receiving a default win in her first match, the unseeded sophomore faced No. 2 seed Annika Harberts-Ott of Providence Academy in the quarterfinals. Hageman fought hard and emerged victorious with a thrilling 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 result. She will now face Osakis’ No. 3 seed, Leah Maddock, in the semifinals.

Semifinals will commence at 8 a.m., followed by the finals and third-place matches at 11:30 a.m.



First round: Aoife Loftus (Mayo) defeated Lila Collins (Brainerd) 6-0, 6-0; Claire Loftus (Mayo) defeated Aisha Atayeva (Chaska) 6-2, 6-1. Quarterfinals: Aoife Loftus defeated Lucy Nabedrick (Wayzata) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3; Claire Loftus (Mayo) defeated Rashi Singh (Edina) 6-0, 6-0.


First round: Malena Diehn/Keely Ryder (Mayo) defeated Avery Schifsky/Shae Crockarell (Mounds View) 6-0, 6-1. Quarterfinals: Diehn/Ryder defeated Brooklyn Keller/Reese Keller (Hastings) 6-1, 6-0.



First round: Avery Skaar (Thief River Falls) defeated Livia Tennessen (Cannon Falls) 6-3, 6-4; Emma Hageman (Winona Cotter) received a win by default. Quarterfinals: Hageman defeated Annika Harberts-Ott (Providence Academy) 2-6, 6-4, 6-4. Losers-bracket quarterfinals: Amyra Games (New London-Spicer) defeated Tennessen 6-0, 6-4.


First round: Erin Witter/Taylor Elliott (Lourdes) defeated Malia Mikyska/Brenna Youngbauer (Pine City) 6-1, 6-1; Elyse Palen/Caroline Daly (Lourdes) defeated Emma Gunderson/Isabelle Smith (Crookston) 6-1, 6-0. Quarterfinals: Ronnie Noska/Lauren Rutten (Staples-Motley) defeated Witter/Elliott 6-1, 4-6, 6-1; Daly/Palen defeated Katelyn Clements/Lisey Langhus (Providence Academy) 6-2, 6-1.


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