Madison Edgewood’s Alex Sviatoslavsky had unfinished business after finishing second at the 2019 WIAA Division 2 boys tennis tournament.
But his bid to move up to the coveted top spot was stalled when the WIAA canceled the 2020 spring season because of the COVID-19 pandemic. His opportunity as a junior was lost.
That fueled Sviatoslavsky even more for his senior season.
Sviatoslavsky couldn’t be stopped, finishing 26-0.
The top-seeded Sviatoslavsky completed his undefeated season with a 6-1, 6-0 victory over second-seeded Adrian Yin of Brookfield Academy in the Division 2 state singles final at Sports Core in Kohler. He won four matches, losing only three games along the way, at state.
As a result, Sviatoslavsky was named the Wisconsin State Journal’s 2021 All-Area Boys Tennis Player of the Year.
“You can’t lose focus and give away free games, free points,” he said after winning the title. “They tumble down into whole sets and matches, so you’ve got to stay focused every point and every game. That’s my philosophy.”
He also won the Badger South Conference tournament title and was a sectional champion.
“I’ve been looking forward to this for so long,” said Sviatoslavsky, who plans to attend the University of Wisconsin, where he will study business and play club tennis. “To finally fulfill that dream is unlike anything else I’ve ever felt.”
Crusaders coach Alex Mory said Sviatoslavsky is easy to coach and extremely aware what is occurring on the court.
“I go out and just tell him something, and he does it immediately,” Mory said.
Coach of the year
Tony Mirasola earned coach of the year honors after leading Middleton to the WIAA Division 1 team state semifinals in Eau Claire.
Second-seeded Middleton, the Big Eight Conference dual champion and the Oconomowoc sectional winner, defeated seventh-seeded Eau Claire Memorial 7-0 in the state quarterfinals.
The Cardinals picked up singles victories from Ian Connell, Jonathan Kim and Aarush Gupta but fell to third-seeded Milwaukee Marquette 4-3 in the semifinals.
Also considered was Madison Memorial coach Joe King, who led the Spartans to state for the first time since 1999.
Wisconsin State Journal 2021 All-Area Boys Tennis
Alex Sviatoslavsky, sr., Madison Edgewood – All-Area Player of the Year. Sviatoslavsky had an undefeated season (26-0) while winning the WIAA Division 2 state tournament singles championship. He was the top seed and earned a 6-1, 6-0 victory over second-seeded Adrian Yin of Brookfield Academy in the final. Prior to getting there, Sviatoslavsky was a Division 2 sectional winner and was the Badger South Conference No. 1 singles winner.
Ethan Yu, so., Madison West – Yu was a Division 1 sectional champion at No. 1 singles and received the No. 5 seed for the state tournament, finishing 16-2 after a second-round loss.
Chase Lindwall, jr., Monona Grove – Lindwall (18-5) received the No. 7 seed and won two matches at the Division 1 state tournament, advancing to the round of 16.
Tyler Nelson, jr., Waunakee – Nelson (16-4), the eighth seed, won a state match after a first-round bye at the Division 1 state tournament, advancing to the round of 16.
Koji Heineman, fr., Middleton – The 12th seed in the Division 1 state tournament, he won two matches and also moved to the round of 16 with a 25-5 record. He was part of Middleton’s lineup at team state.
Jacob Baldwin, jr., and Nikko Vilwock, fr., Sun Prairie – Baldwin and Vilwock became a doubles team late in the season, won a Division 1 sectional championship, then claimed their first three matches at state as the No. 14 seed. Advancing into the top eight put Baldwin and Vilwock (11-2) in the consolation finals, the best finish by an area doubles team.
Erik Spence, sr., and Kyle Helmenstine, jr., Sun Prairie – The Cardinals’ duo played No. 1 and No. 2 doubles during the season. They were unseeded at state, but won two matches and finished 24-7.
Sanjay Mathur, jr., and Spencer Frey, sr., Madison Memorial – Mathur and Frey (15-4) received the 15th seed in the Division 1 tournament and won their first match. They were part of the Spartans’ lineup that advanced to team state.
Ian Connell, jr., Middleton; Jonathan Kim, so., Middleton; Steven Benoy, sr., Stoughton; Tyger Yang, sr., Madison La Follette; Dylan Geske, jr., Watertown; Gokul Kamath, fr., Madison Memorial; Juan Gallego, so., Madison Memorial; Jacob Anderson, sr., Edgerton; Judd Guse, Jr., Watertown Luther Prep.
Max Dugan, so., and Hayden Schreier, jr., Stoughton; Kieran Gopal, jr., and Gene Kim, sr., Middleton;Henry Walsh, sr., and Lance Nelson, sr., Monona Grove; Anders Clark, sr., and Jacob Mandelbrot, jr., Middleton; Joey Hermann, sr., and Joey Kaji, fr., Madison West; Sam Katerov, sr., and Austin Buchner, sr., Madison Edgewood; Matthew Koelpin, jr., and Johannes Bourman, jr., Watertown Luther Prep; Charlie Frehner, jr., and Aaron Roidt, jr., Monroe.