Tennis: Saturday night fever helps Rock Bridge roll

The Bruins advance to Thursday’s final four.
Sunday, October 17, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 10:45 a.m. CDT, Monday, July 21, 2008

JOPLIN — The Rock Bridge tennis team was in a dancing mood Saturday.

Playing with something extra, namely urgency, the Bruins raced through their two Class 2 sectional matches so they could return home to meet dinner reservations.

With the Bruins’ homecoming dance scheduled for later in the evening, Rock Bridge wasted little time in two 6-0 wins, reserving a place in Thursday’s final four.

“I know during points I’d run to the other side just to keep things moving,” said junior Karla Kruse, who lost only one game.

Teammate Ashley Miles, who won 6-0, 6-1 and 6-1, 6-0, also said she hustled more than usual.

“We’re pretty excited about the homecoming dance,” she said.

The Bruins won all six singles matches in straight sets against Kickapoo in the morning at Webb City High School. Meanwhile, Jefferson City needed more than four hours to earn a 5-4 decision against Joplin.

The Bruins used only one hour to sweep the Jays in singles at Schifferdecker Park, guaranteeing their sixth consecutive trip to the state championships.

“It’s a great honor to win another sectional,” coach Ben Loeb said. “We can’t take these things for granted. I know the scores weren’t real close today, but there’s a lot of hard work and effort that goes into getting to this position. I’m just thrilled that we get the chance to play in another final four.”

Rock Bridge (25-0) broke the school record of 23 in a season and extending a dual winning streak to 40 matches.

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