DECORAH—Playing the defending American Rivers Conference champions on the road, Central College fell 7-2 to Luther College in Sunday’s women’s tennis match.
Luther (6-0, 6-0 conference)) has won three of the last four conference titles, including last season. Central coach Ryun Ferrell was pleased with his team’s performance against the Norse.
“We played great,” Ferrell said. “Luther is a good team and if you want to win, you’re going to have to take it from them because they’re not going to give it to you.”
The No. 2 doubles tandem of Bronwyn Metcalf (junior, Pella) and Maddie Hartley (junior, Clarinda) rallied for an 8-5 win, Central’s only doubles victory. The No. 1 team of Karleigh Schilling (senior, Swisher, Cedar Rapids Prairie HS) and Alyssa Lewton (junior, Ankeny Centennial HS) could not hold onto a 7-3 lead as they lost 8-7.
“Maddie and Bronwyn were down 4-1 and came back to win 8-5,” Ferrell said. “If we could win two out of three doubles matches, then the singles matches take on on a different tone. They wouldn’t have as much room for error against us if we lead 2-1 after doubles.”
Sarah Schirm (junior, Cedar Rapids, Xavier HS) earned a singles victory for Central in the No. 6 spot, 5-7, 6-0, 10-4.
“It just clicked for her today,” Ferrell said. “She struggled in her last couple of matches but we had a feeling she’d have a little more success at No. 6 and she did. She played really well.”
The Dutch return home for a Senior Day celebration next Saturday against Coe College. The match starts at 10 a.m. from the A.N. Kuyper Athletics Complex courts. Central ended a 20-match losing streak against the Kohawks in February.
“We had some success against for the first time in 15 years last spring,” Ferrell said. “Hopefully, we can repeat that this year. They’ll come prepared and ready to go and we have to be equally prepared and ready to go.”