GRAND FORKS — Mimi Gu had an inkling about how this high school tennis season would play out.

The West Fargo Sheyenne junior thought she had a chance to win the North Dakota state girls singles championship, but figured Mandan senior Elizabeth Felderman would be standing in the way.

So, Gu prepared all year for that match.

Her out-of-season tennis coach Oliver Summers at times mimicked Felderman's playing style when they hit, knowing that Felderman employed the odd tactic of lobbing her approach shots to push her opponent back.

The preparation paid off.

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West Fargo Sheyenne's Mimi Gu returns a serve from Mandan's Elizabeth Felderman (not pictured) as her fellow Mustangs teammates watch during the North Dakota state girls tennis singles championship match at Choice Health & Fitness on Saturday, June 5, 2021, in Grand Forks. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service
West Fargo Sheyenne's Mimi Gu returns a serve from Mandan's Elizabeth Felderman (not pictured) as her fellow Mustangs teammates watch during the North Dakota state girls tennis singles championship match at Choice Health & Fitness on Saturday, June 5, 2021, in Grand Forks. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service

Gu had an answer Saturday, beating Felderman 6-4, 6-4 to win the state singles title at Choice Health and Fitness. It was the first singles title for Gu, who won a state doubles title in 2018 and a state team title with Sheyenne in 2019.

"I'm very happy about it," Gu said. "I've been working all year for this. I'm happy that I achieved it."

Gu countered Felderman's style by taking the arching shots early — or even out of the air — to make sure she didn't get pushed to the back of the court and also to take time away from Felderman approaching the net.

On match point, Gu hit a backhand passing shot by Felderman.

"I have been working all year for this," Gu said. "If I saw her racquet tipping, I knew it was going to be a lob, so I could step in."

Gu and Felderman played twice during the regular season. Felderman won a three-setter on May 8 in a dual between Sheyenne and Mandan. Gu won in straight sets when the two met again in the West Fargo Sheyenne Invite a week later.

"I have played her many, many, many times before this," Gu said. "They've all been very, very close. I've gotten to know her style and I've gotten to practice for it a little more."

Gu didn't drop a set during the singles tournament. She won 6-2, 6-0 and 6-3, 6-2 during Friday's first round and quarterfinals. On Saturday, she beat Shanley's Maddie Abbott 6-0, 6-1 in the semifinals before getting a strong push from Felderman in the championship.

Gu became the second West Fargo Sheyenne player to win a state singles title. Monti Knewtson won in 2017.

"It was just a sigh of relief," Gu said of finishing the match. "It's definitely something I'll keep forever."

Minot's Olson, Egge win doubles title

The Minot High girls tennis team ended a 27-year drought by winning the state team title in 2019.

On Saturday, the Majettes ended another drought.

The Minot doubles team of junior Eden Olson and junior Sofia Egge marched to the North Dakota state girls doubles title, beating Mandan freshman Sofia Felderman and senior Breanna Helbling 6-4, 6-3 in the championship.

Minot's Sofia Egge high-fives doubles partner Eden Olson (left) after scoring a point over Mandan's Breanna Helbling and Sophia Felderman (not pictured) during the North Dakota state girls tennis championship at Choice Health & Fitness in Grand Forks on Saturday, June 5, 2021. Nick Nelson / Grand Forks Herald
Minot's Sofia Egge high-fives doubles partner Eden Olson (left) after scoring a point over Mandan's Breanna Helbling and Sophia Felderman (not pictured) during the North Dakota state girls tennis championship at Choice Health & Fitness in Grand Forks on Saturday, June 5, 2021. Nick Nelson / Grand Forks Herald

It was the first individual title for a Minot girls tennis player since 1992, when Tina Ruttershoff won the singles championship. It was Minot's first doubles title since 1985, when Nancy Dagner and Sue King won it.

Olson and Egge easily marched to the final, winning 6-0, 6-1 in the first round, 6-1, 6-0 in the quarterfinals and 6-1, 6-0 in the semifinals.

Felderman and Helbling made a strong push in the final, but Olson and Egge won the first set, then pulled away late in the second by winning the final four games.

N.D. state girls tennis meet

Individual tournament

At Choice Health and Fitness

Singles

First round, Friday

Elizabeth Felderman, Mandan, over Olivia Marcil, FD, 6-0, 6-0; Erika Spanjer, FN, over Blaike Zander, BC, 6-3, 7-5; Phoebe Olson, Jam, over Alyssa Sommerfeld, WFS, 6-4, 6-1; Paige McCormick, FD, over Lauryn Hoesel, BSM, 6-2, 6-1; Kate Kesler, Man, over Madi Stauss, GFC, 6-0, 6-3; Maddie Abbott, Shan, over Lizzie Allan, Man, 7-5, 7-6 (7); Marissa Burian, FD, over Valeria Bradley, Dic, 6-2, 6-1; Mimi Gu, WFS, over Morgan Wheeler, Minot, 6-2, 6-0

Quarterfinals, Friday

E. Felderman over Spanjer 6-1, 6-2; McCormick over Olson 6-3, 6-4; Abbott over Kesler 6-0, 6-3; Gu over Burian 6-3, 6-2

Semifinals, Saturday

Felderman over McCormick 6-0, 7-6 (5); Gu over Abbott 6-0, 6-1

Championship, Saturday

Gu over Felderman 6-4, 6-4

Third place, Saturday

McCormick over Abbott 6-0, 6-3

Consolation bracket

First round, Friday

Zander over Marcil 6-3, 6-0; Hoesel over Sommerfeld 6-4, 1-6, 6-4; Allan over Stauss 7-6 (7), 6-1; Bradley over Wheeler 6-0, 6-2

Second round, Friday

Zander over Kessler 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (0); Burian over Hoesel 6-2, 6-3; Allan over Spanjer 6-1, 0-6, 6-1; Olson over Bradley 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (4)

Semifinals, Saturday

Burian over Zander 6-2, 7-5; Olson over Allan 6-4, 6-4

Fifth place, Saturday

Olson over Burian 6-7 (8), 6-4, 6-3



Doubles

First round, Friday

Eden Olson-Sofia Egge, Minot, over Hannah Litzinger-Kate Hinschberger, RR, 6-0, 6-1; Riley Lembke-Maya Kubsad, BC, over Gabby Spicer-Magdalene Spicer, GFC, 1-6, 6-3, 6-0; Camaryn Beasley-Sierra Knoll, BL, over Tanis Lee-Grace Wanzek, FD, 6-1, 6-1; Breck Sufficool-Olivia Ingstad, VC, over Kylie Wieland-Payton Loerch, Mandan, 6-4, 6-1; Sophia Felderman-Breanna Helbling, Mandan, over Sydnee Lemieux-Jennifer Wang, GFC, 7-5, 7-5; Martine Hammer-Sidney Ressler, Minot, over Claire Huebner-Farrah Spicer, RR, 6-2, 6-3; Chesni Strand-Shelby Meyer, Williston, over Lainy Latunski-Sophie Thompson, FN, 6-0, 6-1; Lily Andrews-India Rohl, FD, over Mary Richter-Brooke Haas, BSM, 6-0, 6-0

Quarterfinals, Friday

Olson-Egge over Lembke-Kubsad 6-1, 6-0; Beasley-Knoll over Sufficool-Ingstad 0-6, 7-6 (7), 6-0; Felderman-Helbling, Mandan, over Hammer-Ressler, Minot, 6-2, 6-0; Andrews-Rohl over Strand-Meyer 6-3, 6-4

Semifinals, Saturday

Olson-Egge over Beasley-Knoll 6-1, 6-0; Felderman-Helbling over Andrews-Rohl 7-6 (4), 7-5

Championship, Saturday

Olson-Egge over Felderman-Helbling 6-4, 6-3

Third place, Saturday

Beasley-Knoll over Andrews-Rohl 7-6 (3), 6-4

Consolation bracket

First round, Friday

Spicer-Spicer over Litzinger-Hinschberger 6-2, 6-0; Lee-Wanzek over Wieland-Loerch 6-1, 7-6 (7); Huebner-Spicer over Lemieux-Wang 7-5, 6-4; Latunski-Thompson over Richter-Haas 6-2, 7-6 (5)

Second round, Friday

Spicer-Spicer over Hammer-Ressler 6-1, 6-2; Strand-Meyer over Lee-Wanzek; Lembke-Kubsad over Huebner-Spicer 6-2, 6-1; Sufficool-Ingstad over Latunski-Thompson 6-4, 6-4

Semifinals, Saturday

Strand-Meyer over Spicer-Spicer 5-7, 6-1, 6-3; Sufficool-Ingstad over Lembke-Kubsad 6-4, 6-4

Fifth place, Saturday

Sufficool-Ingstad over Strand-Meyer 6-4, 6-3