Top singles player Emily Rauch, of Burlington, prepares to defend a serve during the Sept. 26 Southern Lakes Conference tournament hosted by Lake Geneva Badger (Mike Ramczyk/Standard Press).

Netters take 5th overall behind three fourth-place finishes

By Mike Ramczyk

Going into last week’s Southern Lakes Conference girls tennis tournament, the Burlington Demons only had two conference wins the entire regular season.

But after the two-day tournament, which took place at Badger and Elkhorn high schools, the Demons exceeded expectations and showed they’re playing their best tennis at the end of the season.

Thanks to three fourth-place finishes, Burlington finished fifth in the final Southern Lakes standings, and head coach Rose Dolatowski is excited about her team’s performance.

“It was a pretty darn good finish, considering we only won two SLC matches,” Dolatowski said.

“Everyone scored points. We came out better than expected.”

The Lady Demons made their biggest impact at singles.

At No. 2 singles, Trinity Northrop beat Delavan-Darien before losing to Elkhorn and took fourth place.

“Trinity lost to Elkhorn in a tough match,” Dolatowski said.

Courtney Raboine also took fourth at No. 3 singles, where she went down swinging in her third-place match.

Raboine beat Union Grove before losing to Elkhorn, 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 in the third-place match.

In the decisive third set, Raboine was winning 5-4 before falling 7-5.

Dolatowski was impressed with Raboine’s performance.

Abigail Boettcher also landed fourth at No. 4 singles.

“Boettcher was 3-0 coming in and took fourth, and it was a good thing. She will be a good singles player for next year,” Dolatowski said.

Another team that stood out for the Demons was the No. 1 doubles squad of Megan Way and Jordan Krause, which only had one SLC win entering the tournament.

Way and Krause beat Delavan-Darien, 6-1, 6-2, in their second match of the day last Thursday at Badger, and then they beat Waterford 4-6, 6-4 (5), to avenge a loss earlier in the season in the fifth-place match.

“They kept getting better and better all season,” Dolatowski said of Way and Krause.

“They played their best at the SLC tournament.”

The other fifth-place finish came from Payton Matson and Olivia Traxinger at No. 3 doubles.

The dynamic duo knocked off Waterford, 6-2, 6-2, in the fifth-place match.

The team was 3-2 entering the meet and finished 5-3 overall.

“They had a good tournament,” Dolatowski said. “They started playing together later in the season. They’re a nice team that works together well. They’re fun to watch.”

To read the entire story and view additional photos, see the Oct. 3 edition of the Burlington Standard Press.