In an eventful week for Greenback tennis, the Larned meet on Tuesday was cancelled, the Pratt netters quickly picked up a meet at Wichita Collegiate on Wednesday, then hosted a six-team invitational on Thursday.
After the decision was made to cancel the Larned meet, coach Larry Kahmeyer received an email from Collegiate putting out a call for a replacement team on Wednesday.
“I was thrilled to take on the Collegiate meet,” commented Kahmeyer. “We needed to face some tougher competition leading into our final week before league and regionals and it really fit the bill.”
Pratt went to Collegiate not knowing exactly what they would face, but rode back with the team championship. Pratt led all teams with 30 points, followed by Collegiate Blue (28), Wichita Independent (24), Maize South (22), Kapaun Mt. Carmel (12), and Collegiate Gold (4).
Collegiate, ranked #1 in 4A state, held back many of their premier players and gave some others a shot, as did Independent and Kapaun.
“With the exception of Collegiate’s Sam Beren, who is a very good singles player and a solid doubles team from Independent, we didn’t face the three private schools’ best, but any win at Collegiate is a good win and every one of our players medaled!” enthused Kahmeyer.
Jonathan Schotte had Pratt’s best outing at the #2 singles spot, going 3-0 to capture 1st. At #1 singles Thomas Mayberry went 2-1 for 2nd place, losing only to Beren. Doubles partners Liam Kahmeyer and Christian Kurz went 2-1 and took 3rd after being knocked out of championship contention by Independent’s Nagirreddy and King. Shivam Bhakta and Trae Foreman also nailed down 3rd with a 2-1 performance.
In Thursday’s action at home the Greenbacks battled it out with five other teams, claiming the runner-up spot to state-recognized Central Plains. Central Plains amassed 42 points to Pratt’s 36, followed by Chaparral (18), Kingman, (10), Larned (10) and South Barber (9).
Kahmeyer and Kurz had Pratt’s standout performance by sweeping the field at #1 doubles, including a satisfying 8-7 (7-5) tie-breaker defeat of Central Plains’ Hammeke and Kirmer.
Mayberry, at the #1 singles helm, went 4-1 on the day for 2nd place, besting all challengers with the exception of a 5-8 loss to Bieberle from Central Plains. Schotte, at #2 singles, had a similar 4-1 run for 2nd, losing 3-8 to Central Plains’ Ryan. Bhakta and Foreman had a tougher day at #2 doubles placing 3rd with a 2-2 performance, losing to Chaparral and Central Plains.
“After winning the last four meets, second place at home seemed like a bit of a let-down to our guys, but it really wasn’t,” said Kahmeyer. “Ranked as high as 5th in 3-2-1A state, Central Plains is very good. We gave them a run in almost every case, kept them from sweeping the meet, and I can’t fault our effort.”
Page 2 of 2 - After a weekend off, Pratt hosts the Central Kansas League tournament on Monday, April 29, then welcomes a 4A regional on Thursday and Friday, May 2 and 3.