May Jagodzinski and the Burlington girls tennis team got a front-row seat for a tiebreaker last month. (Mike Ramczyk/SLN)


By Andrew Horschak

Sports Correspondent

When the 2019 season gets underway next fall, the Burlington girls tennis team will have plenty of new faces on the court.

Seniors May Jagodzinski, Alexandria Naber, Kate Zott and Emily Ball played in their final matches for the Demons in the WIAA Division 1 sectional on Wednesday, Oct. 3 at Lake Geneva Badger.

“Obviously, we’re going to have a big change next year because I only have three returning underclassmen,” Burlington coach Rose Dolatowski said, referring to juniors Trinity Northrop and Megan Way and sophomore Emily Rauch.

Jagodzinski, making her third sectional appearance, hung tough in the opening set but lost her first and only match at No. 1 singles to Hailey Munz of Monona Grove, 7-5, 6-1.

“May will certainly be a big loss,” Dolatowski said. “She’s a great leader and will be missed terribly. She had a good season.”

With a 15-8 record, Jagodzinski was in the discussion for one of the 16 special qualifier spots for the state tournament.

She was ultimately passed over, though, because her resume did not include any victories over state qualifiers or indirect wins over a player who went to state.

Dolatowski said that Naber and Zott played “exceptionally well” at No. 2 doubles.

The seniors opened with a 6-1, 6-2 loss to Oconomowoc’s Tori Krcmarik and Carolyn Tuff, but bounced back with a 6-2, 4-6, 7-5 victory over Sun Prairie’s Leah Hamilton and Grace Hilber in the third-place match.

“That final match was a tough one,” Dolatowski said. “It was a real good match. They didn’t think it was a big deal until I reminded them that it was for third place out of 16 teams.”

Ball and Way finished fourth at No. 3 doubles after losing to Watertown’s Hannah Baneck and Grace Bowman, 6-2, 6-0, and Badger’s Sophia Strasser and Maya Lyng, 6-1, 6-3.

Southern Lakes Conference champion Badger captured the sectional title with 46 points to advance to the WIAA state team tournament Oct. 19-20 at the Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.

Oconomowoc was a distant second with 30. Burlington ended up sixth with 15 points.

While the rackets were put away for the season, Dolatowski’s desire is that it isn’t permanent for Burlington’s seniors.

“That’s what I try to instill in the girls,” the 30th-year coach said. “This is a lifelong sport. I’m still playing at 63. I hope they all continue to play.”