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Area's state participants advance to second day

Tribune photo by Rand Middleton Willmar's No. 1 Xiaodan Yu was born in China, started school in Oklahoma and Kansas, attended high school in Oregon and moved to Willmar with her family a year ago.

MINNEAPOLIS -- Willmar senior Xiaodan Yu in Class AA singles and senior Patricia Ott/junior Kelle Thompson of Lac qui Parle Valley/Dawson-Boyd in Class A doubles lost their opening-round matches before winning in the consolation bracket Thursday at the girls state tennis tournament.

Yu was bounced 6-2, 6-0 by Edina senior Caroline Ward before taking out Blaine junior Mary Liz Swanson 6-2, 6-2 in the consolation quarterfinals. Yu (20-5) will now take on Andover junior Faith Lee this morning at 8 a.m. in the consolation semifinals at the University of Minnesota's Baseline Tennis Center. The winner advances to the 11:30 a.m. consolation final.

Ward, last season's consolation runner-up and a member of Edina's state championship team (the school's 15th consecutive title), won her next match to reach the semifinals.

Ott/Thompson will also be playing in the consolation semifinals today at 8 a.m. The top two singles players during the regular season for LQPV/DB paired for the playoffs to reach the state tournament. The two lost their state opener 6-2, 6-4 to The Blake School junior duo of Ellie Rudd/Maddy Hall before eliminating senior Alex Hancock/junior Drew DeCorsey of Jordan 6-1, 6-1 in the consolation quarterfinals.

Ott/Thompson will meet junior Maggie O'Keefe/sophomore Kelsey Zetah of Staples-Motley this morning with the winner advancing to the consolation final at 11:30 a.m. at the Reed-Sweatt Family Tennis Center.

Rudd/Hall, members of the Bears' state championship team, won their next match to reach the semifinals.