Jeeps top Raiders in early battleApril 8, 2019
By HENDRIX MAGLEY
DUBOIS — For the past two years, Chloe Terwiske has held down the No. 1 singles spot for the Northeast Dubois girls tennis team.
She hasn’t just held down the position though, she’s been dominant at it. Through her first two years, Terwiske has yet to lose a regular season match.
Now a junior, she is three years into the feat after her 6-1, 6-0 victory over Southridge’s Evie Sherer in Monday’s 5-0 victory over the Raiders in Dubois. However, she doesn’t want to think about the streak.
“I try not to jinx myself,” she said with a laugh. “I was pretty scared when I came in my freshman year and I’m normally not like that. But now that I know I can win and that I’m undefeated the past two seasons, it definitely helps with the confidence level.”
Northeast Dubois (2-0) has maintained a tradition of having very successful tennis teams — both on the boys and girls sides.
It’s safe to say that Jeep head coach Tina Terwiske is well aware of the impact her daughter Chloe has had on the court for Northeast Dubois. But perhaps what’s even bigger is the impression she’s already having on some of the younger girls within the program.
“She’s always worked with the middle school program and the girls listen to her — she’s able to see things in their serves or groundstrokes and has been able to help them,” Tina said. “I can remember when she was little out on my driveway, she would mimic me instructing my nephew who is a few years older than her. She’s always had such a great eye, even for the coaching aspect of the game.”
In terms of this season’s team, the Jeeps returned the majority of players from last year’s group that finished with a 15-3 record.
While the doubles tandems switched a bit last year, Paige Knies and Alexis Stafford (No. 1 doubles, def. Camille Fleming/Audra Hochgesang 6-2, 7-5) and Olivia Schroering/Delaney Rache (No. 2 doubles, def. Gabbie Werner/Anna Kappner 6-0, 6-1) both spent a lot of time at the doubles spots last year.
“It’s nice coming in knowing that we don’t have to worry a whole lot about the basics, we can start working on strategies and try to put things together a little more,” Tina said. “Right now, we’ve got a solid group of girls that can play either singles or doubles.”
For Southridge, the Raiders (2-2) have had an abundance of younger players seeing a significant amount of varsity action right away to begin the season.
Freshman Olivia Durcholz played at the No. 2 singles position, falling to Northeast Dubois’ Olivia Rasche 6-4, 6-0 while fellow freshman Kelby LaRoche played at the No. 3 singles spot. She had a close battle but was defeated by Courtney Vittitow, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.
Raider head coach Rhonda Diekhoff is hoping the younger players are gaining valuable experience from these early season matches and hopes they can learn how to de-stress when things aren’t going their way.
“I just want them to get more comfortable with their role, that way by the end of the season they’ll be able to do the best they can do,” Diekhoff said. “Some of them still get jitters and frustration, sometimes they get down and you can see it in their demeanor. They have to figure out how to stay positive, determined and just keep at it.”
Another Raider that has embraced her new role is No. 1 singles player junior Evie Sherer.
Sherer, who spent time at No. 2 singles last season and has also played off and on at No. 2 doubles, admits that there’s been some challenges playing a step up this season but her biggest task isn’t in her game — it’s being a role model and a teacher to some of the younger players on the team.
“It’s made me much more conscious of how I play and how I can be a role model for them,” Sherer said. “I’m just trying to get them to know what the best way to show yourself on the court is and how to act maturely.”
The Raiders were aware that this season was going to mostly be a rebuild type of year to grow and improve in any way they can.
Sherer is hoping to see growth at every single practice as she continues to learn the No. 1 position.
“It’s brought a lot of new pressure but I’ve just tried to get better,” Sherer said. “I know there’s things I need to work on and I just want to get better at every practice.”
For the Jeeps, they have their eyes set on a sectional championship title.
After a 3-2 loss to Barr-Reeve in last year’s title game, Northeast Dubois is hungry to rewrite the story this time around. With most of the same pieces back, the Jeeps believe they have the team to do it.
“Our focus has to be there, we have to have that drive of wanting to win this. Every year we’ve had a 3-2 match in sectional and it stings a little more each time,” Chloe said. “We’re coming back with almost everybody, we feel like we have the upper hand and we have to take advantage of it.”
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