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Wilson survives wild semifinal, advances to third straight CCAL singles title match
ths tennis recap
Erik Peterson, Peter Wilson and Damian Acosta pose after a long day competing at the 2024 CCAL singles tournament on Tuesday at Modesto Junior College.

Turlock High senior Peter Wilson pulled out a victory in 10-point overtime against Akhil Patel of Enochs (Modesto) on Tuesday afternoon in the semifinal round of the Central California Athletic League singles tournament to advance to his third consecutive league singles final. He is slated to face Downey’s Brady Black in the title match at 11 a.m. Thursday at the Modesto Junior College courts.


Wilson has rarely found himself in any sort of trouble this year. Going 12-0 in singles matches this season, Wilson never lost a set. Against Patel, though, he lost the first set by a 7-5 score, with line judges having to be called upon multiple times to decide a handful of close calls.


The Bulldog rebounded with a 6-4 win in the second set. In overtime, both he and Patel battled through exhaustion, as it was each player’s third match of the day. On top of the exhaustion, Patel battled cramps throughout the set. Wilson took full advantage, winning 10-1 and clinching the match to advance in the bracket.


“There were some close calls in the first set that were game-changing, but I just had to stay in the match and stay focused,” Wilson said. “The match was definitely a battle, and playing three matches in a day can be taxing, which was apparent in my opponent. But I stayed focused and tried to just get every ball back.


“I’m really just happy that I could return to the finals for a third consecutive year and hope that I can come home with the title this time.”


In each of the past two seasons, Wilson lost to teammate Joe Chan in the finals. Chan graduated last summer.


“He had a goal of making it to the finals again, this being his third consecutive appearance,” said Turlock head coach Garry Harris. “He has accomplished so much in this league already, but winning this title in his senior year would cap off a historic high school tennis career. He has a great chance of winning. And either way, I am very proud of him.”


Wilson won’t be the only Bulldog continuing to compete in singles action this week. Junior Erik Peterson, who also went undefeated in single matches during the regular season, will face off with Patel in the third-place match at 3 p.m. today at the neutral site of Pitman High School. 


In his semifinal match, Peterson lost 6-1, 6-4 to Black. Prior to that, Peterson was his usual dominant self, defeating Enochs’ Nathan Lascano in a pair of 6-0 sets in the opening round before taking care of Gregori’s Britton Middleton in two sets by 6-2 and 6-0 scores.


Also competing Tuesday was Turlock’s Damian Acosta and Pitman’s Anthony Stessman, Derrick Orth and Matthew Yaghoubi. Acosta and Stessman each lost in the first round while Yaghoubi advanced to the quarterfinals after defeating Modesto’s Abraham Guzman in three sets.