Girls’ tennis serves up sectional champions, state qualifiers
October 17, 2022
With the band practicing in the background for the entire duration of the matches, gusty winds and frigid temperatures, the girls’ tennis doubles duo of senior Zoe Klicker and junior Lucy Nunez didn’t let any distractions faze them. Klicker and Nunez went into their sectional tournament on Friday, Oct. 14, as the #2 seed for Prospect, and unseeded among the rest of the competition.
Their first match on Friday was against the second seed Fremd doubles team. They won that match, and advanced to the next round against first seeded Lake Zurich doubles. Facing the identical twins from Lake Zurich was a much different matchup compared to the first round.
“We played a #2 doubles team first against Fremd, and then we had to play a #1 doubles, so it just sounded a lot scarier,” Klicker said. “We didn’t know how [well] the Lake Zurich girls played.”
This was their state qualifying match. They knew if they won this match, they would move on to the state finals. The girls did just that, winning, and advancing to the state finals.
“It was a lot more exciting in the match to make it to state … we might have both teared up a little bit,” Klicker said.
Other state qualifiers from this weekend include senior Cassie Voicu and sophomore Anna Lizama, who placed third at sectionals, as well as singles player sophomore Kara Pescaru, who placed fourth. The Knights qualify three entries for the state tournament, which is the most since 1998.
The competition to get those three qualifying entries remained still on Saturday as well. Klicker and Nunez continued on Saturday with a win against first seed Buffalo Grove doubles. They then moved on to the Sectional finals against first seed Fremd doubles, who their teammates, #1 doubles duo Voicu and Lizama, had previously lost in the semi-finals match that day.
In the first set of the final match against Fremd, Klicker and Nunez won 6-1. The second set was a tie at 6-6, so the teams went into a set tie-breaker to 7. Prospect won the tie-breaker 7-3 to win the second set and claim the sectional title.
“It was a goal of mine [to make it to state] … but [I] definitely wasn’t expecting to win the sectional,” Klicker said.
The duo didn’t lose a single set throughout their sectional matches.
Klicker and Nunez made history by being the first Prospect team to win sectionals since 2006.
The two also have history playing together. They started playing tennis at the same time, and went undefeated as doubles partners on their middle school club team.
“I like playing doubles because you always have someone there … to keep you up so you don’t get in your head.” Klicker said.
Because Klicker is a senior, the duo will get to compete together one last time at the IHSA state finals on Thursday, Oct. 20.
“Making it [to state] was the main goal, but now, I think I want to win a match at state.” Klicker said.
With the new goal in mind, the Prospect tennis players prepare to play starting Thursday. They won’t get more details on where or when until Wednesday, Oct. 19.