Led by strong play from its doubles teams, Wauwatosa West's boys tennis team is off to a quick start to the season.
The Trojans are 6-1 in dual meets after going 4-0 last week, including opening Woodland Conference play with wins over New Berlin West (6-1) on April 11 and Pius XI (6-1) on April 13. Tosa West also collected a 5-2 win over Hartford and a 5-2 victory over Sussex Hamilton at the Sussex Hamilton Triangular on April 12.
Tosa West's doubles teams of Zach Schumacher and Niels Peters, Bennett Inman and Danny Kuehn and Jacob Lueck and Thomas Schmidt have combined to go 20-1 to start the year.
"The strength of our team right now is our doubles teams," Tosa West coach Kosta Zervas said. "Niels Peters tried singles to start the season and he didn't feel real comfortable there, so I threw him in at No. 1 doubles to see how he would play and he's taken that spot. Bennett played No. 2 doubles last year and is hanging on to that spot again. Danny played No. 3 last year with Jacob. I had those two playing together at the start of the season, but with Thomas Schmidt solidifying our No. 3 doubles spot I could move Danny up to No. 2."
Schumacher and Peters won at No. 1 doubles (6-0, 6-1) against New Berlin West, while Inman and Kuehn won at No. 2 doubles (7-5, 6-0) and Lueck and Schmidt were victorious at No. 3 doubles (6-3, 6-2). Also winning for the Trojans were Akshay Bakshi at No. 2 singles (6-0, 6-2), Alex Cruz at No. 3 singles (6-0, 6-2) and Luke Huitink at No. 4 singles (6-3, 6-1).
Trojans top singles player Nick Price dropped a tough battle to Jonathan Sadowski of New Berlin West, 6-4, 5-7, 7-5.
"It was nice to get two conference wins (over New Berlin West and Pius)," Zervas said. "I was hoping to get a win from Nick at No. 1 singles. He played a nice match against Sadowski. It was a break here or there. He put everything into that match and unfortunately he came up a little short. It is tough to lose as a senior to a freshman coming in, but he will get another crack at him at conference in May."
Tosa West had to alter its lineup for the Hamilton Triangular with Price resting after his marathon match the day prior.
Bakshi moved up to No. 1 singles and won (7-5, 6-3) against Hartford. Cruz bumped up a flight to No. 2 singles and claimed a win over Hartford (6-2, 0-6, 10-4). Schumacher and Peters won at No. 1 doubles (6-0, 6-1), Inman and Kuehn took their No. 2 doubles match (7-5, 6-0) and Lueck and Schmidt won at No. 3 doubles (6-3, 6-2).
Against Hamilton, Huitink won at No. 3 singles (3-6, 6-1, 10-6) and Ethan Boeckenhauer won at No. 4 singles (7-6, 6-4). The doubles teams continued to roll with all winning, as Schumacher and Peters won 6-0, 6-1 at No. 1 doubles, Inman and Kuehn winning 7-5, 6-0 at No. 2 doubles and Lueck and Schmidt taking a 6-3, 6-2 win at No. 3 doubles.
"Beating teams like Hartford and Hamilton without your best player shows how strong the rest of our roster is," Zervas said. "We have guys playing new spots. Luke Huitink has come in as a freshman at No. 4 singles and Thomas Schmidt as a freshman at No. 3 doubles. Those have been nice additions."
The Trojans also had others outside of their regular lineup step up against Pius with players missing due to the beginning of spring break. JJ Shufelt came up from junior varsity to team with Inman for a three-set win at No. 2 doubles.
Also winning against the Popes were Price at No. 1 singles, Bakshi at No. 2 singles, Cruz at No. 3 singles, Huitink at No. 4 singles and Lueck and Schmidt at No. 4 doubles.