Renken/Parker 5th in doubles

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Cherokee senior duo posts 4-1 match record at State

WATERLOO - The Cherokee Braves decorated doubles team of Cole Renken and Nick Parker finished their prep careers in style with a 5th-place medal finish and a 4-1 record at last week's Class 1A IHSAA Boys State Tennis Tournament here.

Cherokee's Lakes Conference tennis doubles champions Cole Renken and Nick Parker pose with their 5th-place medals at last week's State Tournament in Waterloo. Photo contributed

In Friday's first round action, Renken and Parker blew past Fort Madison's Hogan and Perry 6-0, 6-2.

In second round play Friday, the Braves duo dropped their only match of the day, 6-4, 1-6, 1-6 to Dubuque Wahlert's Moore and Runde.

Renken and Parker then regrouped to win all three matches in the consolation bracket, beating Spencer's Jacobson and Wakefield 6-3, 6-2 Friday afternoon; and on Saturday overcoming Pella's Gerber and Wesemann 7-6 (7-5 tiebreaker), 6-4; and defeating Davenport Assumption's Schneden and Jorge 6-2, 6-1 for their 5th place medal.

"Under virtually ideal weather conditions, Nick and Cole put together some of the best doubles play of their careers to secure their medals in convincing fashion," noted Cherokee coach Dave Zelle, who has announced his retirement as Washington High School teacher/coach effective at the close of this school year.

Cherokee's Nick Parker serves the ball as doubles teammate Cole Renken stands ready at net in recent tennis action. The Cherokee doubles team placed 5th at the State Tournament last week in Waterloo, after posting a 4-1 match record there. Photo by Paul Struck

"Saturday's medal round play was a particular testimony to how much this team has improved during the season. Cole, as always, was the master of placement, anticipation, touch and tenacity, and Nick rose sublimely to the occasion to play the best doubles of his career. Together, their crushing overheads, consistent serving, and relentless net play presented an impressive and creditable display of doubles teamwork, clearly worthy of State Tournament play.

"This was a great finish for Nick and Cole as they close out their high school career with a spiffy 38-9 record in three years as doubles partners. Cole and Nick also respectively sport 36-12, 28-11 varsity career singles records at WHS.

Led by seniors Renken and Parker, the 2010 Braves finished third in the rugged Lakes Conference and just missed qualifying for a Substate Team State berth for the third successive year, following a narrow 5-4 Substate loss to Lakes Conference runner-up Le Mars. Spencer won the Lakes team title this season, after the Braves won the 2009 Lakes crown for their first conference championship in school history.

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