Gailey, Eide finish second

WATERLOO – The St. Edmond boys tennis team shined once again on the state’s biggest stage.

The junior duo of John Eide and Zach Gailey finished in second place here Saturday in Class 1A. Seniors Jimmy Averill and Konrad Laufersweiler were fourth after reaching the semifinals.

Both Gaels squads were defeated by eventual champions Solaris Nite and Surya Sawhney of Maharishi, Fairfield.

Against the Fairfield duo in the championship match, Eide and Gailey lost 6-1 and 6-1.

“They struggled to gain any momentum against Maharishi,” said St. Edmond head coach Tyler Philipsen said. “Maharishi was very consistent and we never got a serious run going. We played them a little better than the scores indicate.

“I’m very proud of them for making it this far.”

Eide and Gailey defeated Decorah’s Karl Sand and Caleb Ulring 7-6 (7-1), 2-6, 6-3.

Averill and Laufersweiler played the toughest against Nite and Sawhney, taking the first and only set from them in the tournament. The Gael seniors won the opener, 7-5. They lost the final two sets 6-4 and 6-3.

Averill and Laufersweiler took 14 points from the champions, while the rest of the field only managed six in three matches.

“Those two (Averill and Laufersweiler) played like they wanted the chance at a state title,” Philipsen said. “They didn’t hold anything back.”

The Gael duo dropped the third place match to Sand and Ulring, 3-6, 6-3 1-0 (5).

“The fun thing is that Konrad and Jimmy will play the same teams next week at state,” Philipsen said. “We’re savoring the moment for now.

“We had two teams finish in the top four, so we are happy with that.”

St. Edmond’s season isn’t done, as they’ll open team state tennis on Tuesday in Des Moines. The Gaels earned the No. 1 seed for the event.