Staff reports | @whscharger
Five seniors ended their tennis careers at Smoky Valley Friday with an 8th place team finish at regionals.
Senior Jayna Keller, who earned the second singles spot on the team earlier in the season, lost 6-0, 6-0 in a tough first round match against the #2 seed, Kansas City Christain’s Keira Knoflicek, finishing the season with a 5-11 singles record.
“It was a tough draw for Jayna, as there aren’t many players in the whole state who could compete with Knoflicek,” coach Brendan Praeger said. Knoflicek went on to finish second in the regional.
Senior Lily Ogden also fell in the first round, after battling Smokey Valley’s Logan Spencer 6-1,6-1. Ogden finished her senior season with a 15-16 record. Spencer finished fourth overall.
“In a normal year the seeding would have put that match later in the tournament, but Spencer just played better. The match was a lot more competitive than the score indicates,” Praeger said.
Senior Brianna DeVader and Junior Mayah Mumpower concluded their time as doubles partners in a play-in game against Perry-Lecompton, losing 9-7. “Bri and Mayah came out really slow. I could tell they were nervous. They fought back from a 4-8 deficit, and came within a point of tying it up, but it wasn’t enough,” Praeger said.
Seniors Raegan Feyh and Kendyl Bolinder, who were hoping for a second state appearance this year, also ended their 3-year run as doubles partners Friday. They advanced to the second round after a 6-4, 6-2 win over Sabetha, but lost in a fight for a spot at state to the #2 seed, Sacred Heart. They finish the season with an 18-12 record.
“They played their best match of the season, which was a lot of fun to watch, but the Sacred Heart team was really strong,” Praeger said. It’s especially frustrating because in a normal year they would still have had an opportunity to play for 5th place and a spot at state, but the changes KSHSAA made ended this season early for them.”
Kansas City Christian and Salina Sacred Heart finished tied for first as a team, with the top two spots in both singles and doubles.
Wabaunsee graduates seven seniors from the squad, including four 4-year players. “Tennis players are tough to develop because most of them come in without any experience, so it’s huge for a program to have some consistency over four years,” Praeger said. “This group will be really hard to replace because of their talent, leadership and experience.”
Cross Country returns to competition at Riley County
After returning to school from quarantine, the cross country team returned to competition Saturday at Riley County.
The girls varsity team placed 8th while the boy’s varsity team placed 7th. The boys moved to 3-15 on the season and the girls moved to 6-11.
Sophomore Rebekah Stuhlsatz finished in 12th place with a time of 22:31. Freshman Sophia Castillo set a new personal record by 2 minutes with a time of 25:59 and placed 44th. Senior Eli Mumpower had the best time for the boy’s team with a time of 20:50 and 34th place. Juniors Eli McDaniel and Elijah Wade both set season bests on Saturday. McDaniel finished the JV race with a time of 34:26 and 21st place and Wade finished the Varsity race with a time of 23:05 and 52nd place.
“After 2 weeks of quarantine, we came back against some strong competition at Riley County,” said head coach Roger Alderman. “It was good to get a race in; it had been 16 days since we last competed at a meet.”
The team competes again Thursday at home in the Mid-East League meet.
Football drops to 2-4
On Friday the football team traveled to Jefferson County North with everyone back from quarantine. The Chargers started off hot with a 20-8 lead at the end of the first quarter, but ended up losing 38-20. The team is now 2-4 on the season.
Junior quarterback Cade Oliver threw for 297 yards and 1 touchdown. Senior wide receiver Dawson Schultz had 167 receiving yards and 1 receiving touchdown, with a 95-yard kick return touchdown. Freshman Zach Frank had an interception return for a touchdown, and senior Tyler Lohmeyer led the team in tackles with 14.
The Chargers will face Horton at home Friday at 7 p.m.
Volleyball faces tough league competition
Volleyball traveled to Rossville October 6 to face Rossville, without the help of a few quarantined varsity players.
The team dropped both matches 25-18, 25-10 and 25-16, 25-22.
“I feel retty good having our starting middle and main setter back. I feel like the team’s confidence should go up with everyone back,” junior middle hitter Lauren Schutter said.
With all players back, the team faced Riley County at home Tuesday night.
The varsity dropped both matches 23-25, 25-27 and 23-25, 25-13, 17-25.
Volleyball will play at home Thursday for its annual pink out.