June 10, 2010 at 9:29 a.m.
After breezing through the sub-section with relative ease as the top seed, the Chisago Lakes pair of David Rau and Brett Lizotte got down to the nitty gritty of the section last week.
Their first match up was against Bauer LeSavage and Pedor Norr of Duluth East. LeSavage and Norr were mostly singles players throughout the year, and as the fourth seed, they didn't have too much to offer Lizotte and Rau, who moved past the 20-0 mark with the win, because of their experience together throughout the year.
With the win, the CL tandem moved on to play the third seed from the south, Dylan Sperry and Zack Decker of Forest Lake. It was both team's second match of the day, and again, Lizotte and Rau's experience together really helped them pull through as Sperry and Decker haven't been together for good chunk of the year.
With only one team standing in between them and the state tournament, Rau and Lizotte buckled down for a tough match. They were set to face Nick Reiners and Marshall White of Cambridge-Isanti, the second seed in the south sub, after Reiners and White defeated the top-seeded pair from the North from Hibbing.
The Wildcats twosome buzzed through the first set, winning 6-4 over the familiar foes from Cambridge-Isanti.
In the second set, the match was back and forth the whole time, and White and Reiners pushed Rau and Lizotte to the brink more than once, but the CL tandem always responded and the two teams went to a tiebreaker at 6-6.
The tiebreaker was much the same as the original set, a back and forth battle with neither team giving room for the other to breathe. In the end, Rau and Lizotte won it 8-6 after some exhilarating volleys, and they claimed Chisago Lakes' first ever berth into the state tournament in tennis.
Rau and Lizotte's first challenge is going to be a challenging one.
The junior pair faces off against the only twosome in the state tourney that sports two seniors. Brady Malmsten and Alexander Tollefson of Eden Prairie are the first opponents for Rau and Lizotte.
The take the court at the University of Minnesota Baseline Tennis Center at 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 10. If they win, they'll play again on Thursday at 2 p.m. against the winner of Sam and Josh Gearou of Elk River versus Joe Minear and Tom Joswiak of Rochester Century.
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