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Tennis courts named for longtime coach Shannon Schartz

POSTED March 20, 2017 8:32 p.m.

 In recognition of his years of dedication to local tennis and local youth, the Great Bend City Council Monday night approved naming the west tennis courts at Veterans Memorial Park in honor of longtime coach Shannon Schartz.

The action was taken upon the request of Chase Buntain, a 2013 Great Bend High School graduate and former tennis player at GBHS and Barton County Community College. “Schartz is worthy of this honor due to his successful tennis career as a coach in Great Bend and due to his dedication to the community by volunteering hundreds of hours for youth tennis,” Buntain said.

“I think this is admirable,” said Mayor Mike Allison. “Shannon has done a lot for the tennis community in Great Bend.”

Now retired, Schartz coached 67 seasons of tennis at GBHS. His coaching career included holding 86 varsity titles, 14 league team titles, three regional titles and one state championship.

Schartz earned many coaching honors including: 1988 SA Girls Tennis Coach of the Year; 1989 Tennis Coach Sliver Award by Scholastic Coach Magazine; 1988 Overall Girls Tennis Coach of the Year; 1999 Section 5 Girls Tennis Coach of the Year; 2003 Outstanding Clinician Award; 2003 SA Tennis Coach of the Year; 2007, 2008, 2009, 2012 and 2013 Western Athletic Conference Girls Tennis Coach of the Year; as well as 2012 and 2013 WAC Boys Tennis Coach of the Year. 

In addition, he coached several state qualifiers.

In 2012, he was inducted into the National High School Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame, the first such honor given to a Kansas tennis coach, and was inducted into the GBHS Hall of Fame in 2016.

“Shannon Schartz continues to serve,” Buntain said. He has provided free tennis lesson to hundreds of children in our community for the past 46 years and still volunteers to help with local summer youth clinics.

He also volunteers his time to keep the courts clean.

Buntain said he intends to purchase the sign and on the day of the unveiling, hold a tennis tournament that benefits the Colon Cancer Alliance Organization since Schartz is a colon cancer survivor.

“He showed great humility and character during my last tennis season by supporting our team and never letting us down by coaching us through every tennis meet that season even though he was quite ill from chemotherapy treatments,” Buntain said. “Coach Schartz deserves this honor.”


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