MUNSTER | The Times No.1 Munster Mustangs added to their legacy Saturday, defeating Highland 5-0 for their 31st consecutive sectional championship.
It was the 38th overall sectional title for Munster, the most of any Indiana high school, according to IHSAA records.
The Mustangs (13-1) extended their postseason winning streak in fine fashion, shutting out all three sectional opponents. Bishop Noll, Clark, and the Trojans all fell 5-0 earlier in the week.
"Overall, it was a more challenging week than the scores indicated," Munster coach Steve Lopez said. "As a team, we have been trying to get a consistent run going. We want to play well and at a certain pace in the postseason.
"The rain delays and the weather, as well as some tough opposition, have been holding us back."
No. 1 singles player Jack Heiniger notched the first point with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Jeff Michner.
"I like to set the tone for the team by getting the first point," Heiniger said. "I think it helps the team when they see I am off the court and cheering them on.
"I think it helps their confidence level knowing we are up one point."
Kelan Harrish made it 2-0 with a 6-0, 6-1 win at No. 3 singles a few moments later.
"It's very exciting to be in a position to help the team out," Harrish said. "I moved to No. 3 singles a few weeks ago, and I am glad to be able to contribute. This is my first sectional final, and I think I handled the pressure pretty well."
Highland finished the year 12-6 and coach Adam Baez was pleased with the year's success.
"This was going to be a rebuilding year for us," Baez said. "Our expectations were to finish at about a .500 record. But these guys played well all year and did a great job against some tough opponents.
"We finished second in the Merrillville Invite, and that was a real confidence builder. It carried over and helped us make it to the finals in sectional."
Munster will host the regional Tuesday and Wednesday against sectional winners from Crown Point, River Forest, and Merrillville.
"There will be some really great tennis here," Lopez said. "We plan to be up for it. Our goal is Indianapolis. We want to represent the region in the finals."
Munster has won 28 regional titles. The IHSAA website lists it as being tied with Homestead for most regional wins.