The successful season of the Wauwatosa West doubles team of senior Connie Terlizzi and junior Alyssa Piek came to an end with a first-round loss at the WIAA girls tennis state individual tournament at Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.
Seeded 12th in the field of 64 teams, Terlizzi and Piek fell in three sets to special qualifiers senior Jaida Drame and freshman Mia Bohlen (30-7 overall) of Nicolet on Oct. 13.
"I know they were disappointed," Wauwatosa West coach Kosta Zervas said. "Going to state is a great accomplishment. It is a very tough place to play. As a seeded player, all the pressure is on you. You are expected to win. When you don't, it is a tough pill to swallow.
"It was still a very successful season for Connie and Alyssa."
Terlizzi and Piek dropped the first set, 3-6, but bounced back for a 6-3 win to even the match. Drame and Bohlen then won the 10-point tiebreak set, 10-6.
"We played very, very tight in the first set," Zervas said. "We played a little intimidated. We then did a really nice job in the second set, and then we couldn't put a run together in the tiebreaker to distance ourselves from our opponent.
"Give credit to Nicolet. They didn't allow us to play the way we are used to playing, and that's consistent, ball back in play. They tried to make the points quick. We couldn't get into a rhythm."
Terlizzi ends her high school tennis career as one of the most decorated players in Wauwatosa West history as a four-time conference champion and a two-time state qualifier.
She averaged nearly 20 wins per season over four years and went 37-9 as a junior and senior. Terlizzi made the state individual tournament with doubles partner Alicia Picard in 2015 and returned this season with Piek.
"She was a real nice player for our program," Zervas said. "She will be a tough piece to lose. She was our glue and our rock as our captain. She never really got rattled ever in her career."
Piek will return as a senior next season having state tournament experience under her belt.
"Just being able to see what it takes to get there and the hard work it takes to get there," Zervas said. "She got to feel the pressure of the event. To understand what that is like can go a long way. We talked about how it felt (after losing) and how she doesn't want to have that feeling again."