LE MARS - The Cherokee Braves First Flight doubles team of Alex Struck and Matt Enderlin won the 2011 Lakes Conference Championship with a perfect 5-0 match record here Saturday in windy, chilly conditions.
The Cherokee duo earned All-Lakes Conference honors for their championship win and this is the third consecutive year the Braves have claimed the Lakes Conference First Flight doubles title, with graduated seniors Cole Renken and Nick Parker winning the first two years.
Struck and Enderlin beat Storm Lake 5-3 in their opening match, followed by a 5-3 win over Spirit Lake-Okoboji, a 5-2 victory over Spencer, a 5-0 win over Estherville-LC, and a 5-0 sweep over #2 finisher Le Mars in the title match.
Cherokee's second Flight doubles team of Gus Laursen and Gabe Conley placed fifth with a 1-4 match record.
In First Flight singles for the Braves, freshman Brett Walker placed fifth with a 1-4 match record, and Connor Ogren was fifth in Second Flight singles with a 1-4 record.
The top two First Flight doubles teams earn All-Lakes Conference honors, along with the top three singles players in First Flight, and the champion in Second Flight.
Players declare for either singles or doubles competition in the Lakes Tournament, and can't compete in both.
"As expected, the Conference Tournament was dominated by the experienced senior-laden Le Mars and Storm Lake squads, so it was gratifying to have Alex and Matt come through the First Flight doubles round robin with an unblemished 5-0 record," said Cherokee coach Dave Zelle.
"The climax was when we handed the Le Mars doubles entry their only loss of the tournament with a 5-0 shutout. That secured All-Lakes Coinference recognition for Alex and Matt.
"Brett Walker also had a respectable performance and great learning experience as a freshman thrown to the wolves in the powerful First Flight singles competition. Brett and Connor each had a match or two that, with a little more experience, could have been winnable. The experience they gained today could be a great tool for their future development as players."
Senior Carsen Anderson (5-0) of Storm Lake won the First Flight singles over senior Mike Ahlers (4-1) of Le Mars.
Le Mars won the team title with 18 points, followed by Storm Lake 15, Spencer 10, Spirit Lake-Okoboji 9, Cherokee 8, E-LC 0.
The Braves play at E-LC Thursday night and host Spencer Monday night.