One year removed from his first state tennis tournament appearance, Red Oak junior Jered Wilson quickly found himself in an early-morning battle for 5A gold.
It wasn't the first experience for Wilson on the state stage in College Station, either.
Wilson first appeared at the 5A state tennis tournament as a sophomore. He ultimately fell in the opening round last season to Rajiv Saralaya, of Amarillo, 6-2, 6-0 in the state quarterfinals.
This season, however, he put together quite the show.
Wilson began the two-day tournament with an opening round win against Landon Skrobarcek, of Northside Harlan, 6-1, 7-6 (10-8). He then ousted Lubbock Cooper's Brice Bradshaw in the state semifinals, 6-1, 6-0.
The pair of victories moved Wilson into the 5A state title match at 8:30 a.m. Friday, May 17 against Nederland's Brandon Do.
Do reached the finals with wins against Isaac Cordova (El Paso, 6-1, 6-2) and Peyton Dooley (Highland Park, 6-0, 6-7, 6-4).
He then defeated the Red Oak hopeful in the state title tilt, 6-1, 6-4.
Wilson's second-place finish in the 5A state tennis championships is the highest-ever finish for a Red Oak tennis player.
He's also just a junior, meaning there will be a third run at a state title in 2020.
Red Oak head tennis coach Danita Calhoun previously noted that Wilson has "the all-around game. You see other players that have a good game, but he has finesse, he has the touch. [...] He really is an all-around player, and he is just very smart on the tennis court."
Wilson comes from a family of tennis players, though it was his oldest brother, John Wilson IV, who influenced the younger three brothers to pick up the sport.
John Wilson IV, a 2013 Red Oak graduate, played collegiately at North Carolina A&T, while Joshua Wilson is a junior tennis standout at Alabama A&M University.
Jordan Wilson also played tennis for Red Oak up until his graduation last May.
"It's just great being able to represent Red Oak and go to state," Wilson previously told the Daily Light. "[...] I think it is great that I get the sport of tennis' name out there. Tennis is just like any other sports at Red Oak. We are successful. We compete, and we are athletic. It is great to get the name of tennis out there."