The Prairie School boys tennis team didn’t need a pep talk.
The Hawks were aware what was at stake when they competed in the WIAA Division 2 Sectional Wednesday at Pleasant Valley Tennis Club at Jackson.
If they won the sectional, they'd be the first Prairie boys team to advance to the State Team Tournament.
“They knew all about it,’’ Prairie coach Nich Schafer said. “ ... getting to state, has been a goal of theirs all season.’’
Behind first-place finishes by Juan Perez at No. 1 singles, Andrew Liu at No. 2 singles and Rohan Banerjee at No. 3 singles, the Hawks totaled 21 points Wednesday, five more than second-place Shorewood.
Combined with the 24 points from Monday's sub-sectional, the Hawks finished with 45 overall points. Shorewood was second with 38, while University School of Milwaukee was third with 29.
The State Team Tournament will be held June 10 at the Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.
“They (the Hawks) have been very close the last three years,’’ said Schafer, who is in his first year as the Hawks boys coach. “So, they really wanted this and it showed.’’
Perez led the way for the Hawks, going 3-0 at the sectional and improving his season record to 28-1.
Perez, a senior, won all of his matches in straight sets: He opened with a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Adam Kelly of Shorewood and then beat George Wong of Whitefish Bay Dominican by the identical score. Perez won the championship match by beating Pablo Dale of Brookfield Academy 6-4, 6-1.
Liu (26-1) won his first match against Ian Francis of Brookfield Academy by default at 2-0, 2-0 and then defeated Daniel Taleghani of University School 6-1, 6-3 in the title match.
By winning their Nos. 1 and 2 singles flights, Perez and Liu automatically qualified for the State Individual Tournament, which starts next Thursday at the Nielsen Tennis Stadium.
Banerjee opened No. 3 singles competition with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Cameron Strawn of University School and then beat Elijah Johnson of Shorewood for the championship 7-5, 2-6, 6-2. Schafer is hoping Banerjee will advance to state as a special qualifier.
Also headed to the State Individual Tournament will be Prairie’s No. 1 doubles team of Peter Lamberton and Jacob Ruud, which placed third at the sectional.
Lamberton and Ruud qualified for state by winning their first match, beating Addison Elliott and Matthew Cooper of University School 6-1, 6-3. They ended up in third place after defeating James Ewing and JJ Nelson of Shorewood 6-2, 6-1.
WIAA Division 2
Brown Deer Sectional
TEAM SCORES: 1. Prairie School, 45. 2. Shorewood, 38. 3. University School of Milwaukee, 29. 4. Brookfield Academy, 28. 5. Catholic Memorial, 26. 6. New Berlin West, 13. 7. St. Joseph, 12. 8. Martin Luther, 8. 9. Grafton, 4. 9. Dominican, 4.
SINGLES: 1 — Perez, Prairie, def. Kelly, Shorewood, 6-1, 6-1; def. Wong, Dominican, 6-1 6-1; def. Dale, Brookfield Academy, 6-4 6-1. 2 — Liu, Prairie, def. Francis, Brookfield Academy, 2-0 2-0 default; Liu def. Taleghani, University School of Milwaukee, 6-1 6-3. 3 — Banerjee, Prairie, def. Strawn, USM, 6-1 6-0; def. Johnson, Shorewood, 7-5, 2-6 6-2. 4 — Gridley, USM, def Bajaj, Prairie, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3; Bajaj def. Gosenheimer, Catholic Memorial, 6-2 6-3.
DOUBLES: 1 — Lamberton-Ruud, Prairie, def. Elliott-Cooper, USM, 6-1 6-3; Tan-Matthews, Brookfield Academy, def. Lamberton-Ruud 6-1 6-3. 2 — Elekes-Desai, USM, def. Tousis-Goelz, Prairie, 6-3 6-4; Tousis-Goelz def. Hill-Pond, Kenosha St. Joseph, 7-5 6-1. 3 — Eaton-Ramos, Prairie, def. Vipond-Zaiser, Brookfield Academy, 6-3 6-1; Ewing-Kessenich, Shorewood, def. Eaton-Ramos 6-2 6-3.
Andre Antreassian is going back to the Individual State Tournament for the fourth straight year. The Horlick senior posted a 2-1 record in finishing second at No. 1 singles at the Waukesha South Sectional.
Antreassian beat A.J. Brahm of Mukwonago 6-1, 6-4 in his first match and followed with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Jacob Ludwig of Burlington. Antreassian then lost to Daniel Moore of Kenosha Tremper 6-1, 6-2 in the title match.
Antreassian is 21-4, with three of his losses coming to Moore.
“Andre’s only losses this year were to Juan Perez (of Prairie) and Daniel Moore, both of whom will be ranked highly at the state tournament,’’ Horlick coach Kelly Goggins said.
Also advancing to the state individual meet is Union Grove’s No. 1 doubles team of CJ Maurer and Nico Zellinger, who won their first match and finished fourth with a 1-2 record.
"I believe they are the first doubles team for Union Grove to go to state since the '90s,'' Union Grove coach Mike Brannen said of Mauer and Zellinger, who are 13-9.
Jacob Ludwig of Burlington placed third at No. 1 singles, while Alec Dam of Union Grove lost his first match at No. 1 singles.
Park’s No. 1 doubles team of Josh GradyMiller and Kristian Joergensen also lost their first match.
WIAA Division 1 Waukesha South Sectional
At Heyer Park
TEAM SCORES: 1. Kettle Moraine 37, 2. Waukesha North 35, 3. Waukesha South 27, 4. Kenosha Indian Trail 29, 5. Kenosha Tremper 20, 6. Westosha Central 18, 7. Horlick 14, 8. Union Grove 10, 9. Burlington 7, 10. (tie) Mukwonago and Wilmot 6, 12. (tie) Case, Park, Kenosha Bradford/Reuther 2.
Racine County qualifiers
SINGLES: 1 -- Andre Antressian, Horlick, 2nd place, 2-1.
DOUBLES: 1 -- Maurer-Zellinger, Union Grove, 4th place, 1-2.