Shannon Gibbons-Mikayla Wheeler

Stoughton seniors Shannon Gibbons, left and Mikayla Wheeler, right, look to hit a ball just over the net in a No. 1 doubles match at the WIAA Division 1 state tournament on Thursday, Oct. 14, at Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.

Stoughton seniors Mikayla Wheeler and Shannon Gibbons closed out their careers at the WIAA Division 1 state tournament on Thursday, Oct. 14, at Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.

Stevens Point juniors Abby Erwin and Tatum Thielen defeated Wheeler and Gibbons in a first-round match 6-1, 6-1.

“I think it’s a big accomplishment to just be here and be one of the top doubles teams in the state,” Wheeler said.

Gibbons started the season playing singles before making the switch to No. 1 doubles. With the loss, Wheeler and Gibbons finished the season 8-7.

“It’s cool to be in this environment and around all of the best players in the state,” Gibbons said.

Erwin and Thielen did a lot of lobbying and that limited the Vikings’ duo’s chances of hitting a winner at the net.

“Their ground strokes were really consistent,” Wheeler said. “They used a lot of floating shoots instead of ground strokes.”

Stoughton coach Jason Model commended the Vikings’ duo for battling from behind in a state match.

“I’m really proud of them,” Model said. “Their goal was making it here. They just ran into a good team. They played with their heart. We wanted them to stay positive because they still had a chance to come back.”

Model said Wheeler and Gibbons tried to adjust to the Stevens Point duo lobbying more.

“It just didn’t happen today,” he said.

Wheeler will always remember having four different doubles partners her senior season.

“To end up with Shannon was amazing,” Wheeler said. “Playing at sectionals I think was the most memorable because we played our hearts out in that match.”

Wheeler will attend the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and plans to play tennis.

Gibbons hasn’t decided where she will attend college, but plans to play hockey.

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