Last season, Wilson's Julianne Hunter lost to teammate Stephanie Johnson in the Interhigh girls singles tennis final.

This season, with Johnson attending Howard University, Hunter claimed the Interhigh championship yesterday by defeating a fatigued Dana Byrd of Banneker, 6-1, 6-1, at the Carter Barron's Fitzgerald Tennis Center.

"I had to be here," said Hunter, who lost just four games in the tournament and finished the season 10-0. "It had to be mine this year. Nicole {Chambers, Ballou's No. 1 player}, Dana or I -- it was going to be one of us and hopefully it was going to be Nicole or I because we are both seniors. Dana has another year to go."

Last season's loss to Johnson in the final was "frustrating," said Hunter. "I'd like to play her again now but at least it stays within the team."

Since Wilson Coach Isom Upkins was given the job seven years ago, this is the sixth time a Wilson girl has won the Interhigh singles. Furthermore, Upkins-coached teams have captured seven consecutive Interhigh team championships.

Ironically, it was Byrd's grueling 2-hour 15-minute semifinal match with Chambers, which she won, 10-7, that was a major factor in Hunter's success.

Following the Chambers match, Byrd had just a 45-minute break before facing Hunter.

"Out in the sun, that does not work," said Byrd. "That {match with Chambers} did it for me. I really put my all into it."

"I was hoping for that," said Hunter. "Today was a better match for her, but I wanted to win and I felt that I had to win." Earlier in the season Hunter defeated Byrd by 10-0.

In the boys singles semifinals, Taro Alexander of Duke Ellington defeated Wilson's Daniel DaCosta, 10-4, and DeJuan McIlwaine of Ballou edged H. D. Woodson's Milford Best, 10-7.

Honorable mention All-Mets Alexander and McIlwaine will meet in the final on Monday at 4 p.m. at the Fitzgerald Tennis Center.