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DeLorme looks back on MHS boys tennis season | News, Sports, Jobs

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Robert Brewer/MDN Minot Highs Brayden McLean, seen here in a doubles during the WDA West Regional Tournament, helped the Magicians varsity tennis team win its first regional tournament championship in nine years.

Last season, the Minot High boys’ tennis team finished the year with an undefeated conference record, along with its first WDA West Regional Tournament championship since 2012.

After that team performance at Hammond Park on September 30, Minot High brothers Zach and Aidan Diehl won the regional doubles tournament championship at their home turf two days later. Older brother Zach, a senior, concludes his high school tennis career as a six-time winner of letters, four-time conference performer, and two-time all-state roster.

Nationally, Minot won two of his three team competitions at Grand Forks earlier this month, finishing fifth overall. Individually, six Magi players qualified to compete in singles or doubles. Of that group of six, the Diehl brothers came the farthest in the tournament as they qualified for the state semifinals in doubles.

Meanwhile, Minot’s tennis head coach, Scott DeLorme, spoke highly of the contributions the Diehl brothers have made to the program. “It’s hard to say enough good things about these guys,” DeLorme tells The Minot Daily News. “Zach wanted to play with Aidan and they put in a great performance this year. They didn’t drop a doubles match until the state semifinals. If they look back in a few years, they will realize how special this season was for them and the many different things they accomplished together, both individually and for their team.”

Reflecting on a strong season for the tennis program, DeLorme attributes his club’s success to the immense depth of his roster. He also believes that having a mix of multisport athletes, as well as tennis specific athletes, has helped create a unit of composed and highly skilled players who excel in a competitive atmosphere.

“Our multisport athletes go all year round and they have been in big situations before, the moment doesn’t get too big for them,” De Lorme argues. “Our tennis specific players have been really committed over the past few years to getting better to get their game to a high level. We have three to five boys in almost every class that we think can help us in the future, so the competition between them is also important. The players keep pushing themselves to get better.”

While the overall season was a success, the Minot tennis coach admits he is fifth in the state to leave the club with plenty of room to improve towards 2022. If that is the case, DeLorme believes his remaining off-season players will be very will be motivated to make the adjustments necessary to achieve a better result next year.

“I think we feel really good about going 2-1 in the state tournament for fifth place, but it also leaves a sour taste in our mouths. We’ve had a great season, but the last few years we’ve been in that comforting championship game. Our guys want to get out of the first round of the state tournament and I think they will keep pushing themselves to hopefully reach that goal next year.” adds the Minot tennis mentor.

Looking forward to next season, Minot will lose older brother Diehl and fellow senior Colby Opp at graduation. DeLorme acknowledges that there will be big shoes to fill for the returning players, but remains confident that younger players will be fully capable of keeping the Magicians in the running for a higher position next fall.

“Zach and Colby have done so many things for us not only on the field but off the pitch as they have been exceptional role models for our younger children. I hope the youngsters saw the time and dedication it took them to achieve what they did,” the Minot coach continues. “All of our varsity kids accepted the junior varsity and JV2 players as part of their own and hopefully these successes will push them to another level early next year.”

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