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Central Plains, Larned head to 3-1A state tennis

Oilers will vie for state title

PRAIRIE VILLAGE — The Central Plains Oilers have rode down this road before. 

The Oilers earned runner-up state tennis trophies the past two years after capturing the 3-1A state tennis championship in 2016. The Oilers have reloaded for 3-1A state tennis with returning doubles qualifiers Brett Liebl-Devin Ryan (23-0) and Paxton Hammeke-Lweson Oeser (19-4).

Ryan is a multi-time state qualifier after finishing doubles runner-up with Paxton Hammeke last year. Liebl teamed with Kade Beck, who graduated, to finish third in doubles last year. 

“We’re battled tested. Our plan is to play good tennis. If we play well, we believe everything will take care of itself,” said Central Plains coach Gary Bittner. “We need everyone to contribute this weekend.”

Bittner said the Oilers will vie with Collegiate’s Max Wheeler-Luke Swain for the No. 1 doubles seed.

The team has not practiced outdoors much this week due to heavy rain. The Oilers have worked indoors at the Great Bend Town & Country Racquet Club thanks to the generosity of the club.

“We’ve stayed sharp and managed to hit,” Bittner said.

There is no allowance to move indoors, but the forecast looks favorable with tempeartures in the 60s with no rain forecast in Kansas City. 

Larned’s four-time state qualifier Dalton Penka (20-10) and doubles qualifiers Andrew Bright-Logan DeMond (23-6) and Britton Herrman-Joseph Theis (16-11) have also qualified for the state tournament.

Play starts at 10 a.m. Friday at Harmon Park in Prairie Village.

Returning intact doubles teams feature Salina Sacred Heart’s fifth-place Charlie Skimore-Trace Leners (18-7), Smoky Valley’s seventh-place 4A tandem Matt Lucas-Jake Lucas (22-3) and Conway Springs’ seventh-place Peyton Winter-Joshua Koester (22-10).

Kansas City Christian’s state runner-up Owen Vanerark (30-2) joins Ellsowrth’s third-place Joey Oberle (28-1), Sterling’s fourth-place William Weiner (24-4), Hesston’s sixth-place Logan Gamble (28-5), Lawrence Seabury’s Grayson Rader (14-5), Colby’s ninth-place Drew Starbuck (26-3) and Seabury’s 10th-place Caleb Kern (26-5).  




1—William Weiner, Sterling, 24-4

2—Logan Gamble, Hesston, 28-5

3—Rhain Isaac, Sterling, 19-7

4—Tristan Harcrow, Hutchinson Trinity, 14-5

5—J.J. Heredia, Central Plains, 21-9

6—Cole Deutschendorf, Hesston, 11-10


1—Owen Vanderark, KC Christian, 30-2

2—Caleb Kern, KC Christian, 26-5

3—Grayson Rader, Lawrence Seabury, 14-5

4—Dalton Denner, Marysville, 19-7

5—Peter Westbrook, Lawrence Seabury, 14-6

6—Luke Oster, Shawnee Maranatha, 5-5


1—Joey Oberle, Ellsworth, 28-1

2—Drew Starbuck, Colby, 26-3

3—Dalton Penka, Larned, 20-10

4—William Cupp, Scott City, 25-6

5—Joan Vilalta Bartes, Meade, 21-8

6—Cody Bourbon, Ellsworth. 17-7


1—Grant Ramsey, Wichita Collegiate, 11-4

2—Gabe Carnley, Wichita Independent, 15-9

3—Luke Bellar, Conway Springs, 22-10

4—Charlie Dunne, Wichita Collegiate, 8-8

5—Garrett Robinson, Conway Springs, 19-12

6—Palmer Farrow, Wichita Indepensent, 15-14



1—Brett Liebl-Devin Ryan, Central Plains 23-0  

2—Matt Lucas-Jake Lucas, Smoky Valley, 22-3

3—Isaac Decker-Jeb Carlson, Hesston, 15-11

4—Paxton Hammeke-Lawson Oeser, Central Plains, 19-4

5—Cole Brumbaugh-Johann Rachholz, Smoky Valley, 12-3

6—Charlie Skidmore-Trace Leners, Salina Sacred Heart, 18-7


1—Caden Whetzel-Dalton Zelenka, Ellsworth, 24-5

2—Andrew Bright-Logan DeMond, Larned, 23-6

3—Nathan Lee-Brysen Barton, Colby, 19-13

4—Gatlin Clawson-Korben Clawson, Meade, 28-5

5—Adam Vehring-David Wesseler, Ellsworth, 18-7

6—Britton Herrman-Joseph Theis, Larned, 16-11


1—Max Wheeler-Luke Swain, Wichita Collegiate, 15-0

2—Peyton Winter-Josh Koester, Conway Springs, 22-10

3—Mike Feng-Josh Fernandes, Collegiate, 5-4

4—Zach Mercer-Cody Jones, Conway Springs, 15-7

5—Isaac Branam-Max Kice, Wichita Classical, 13-10

6—Max Ball-Nathan Bromlow, Wichita Classical, 8-11


1—Joe Schmidt-Duncan Paul, KC Christian, 25-5

2—Will Knight-Andrii Grestsko, Shawnee Maranatha, 15-6

3—Ian Hanna-Diego Klish, Lawrence Seabury, 15-6

4—Braeton Faulkner-Bryar O’Neil, Marysville, 19-9 

5—Gavin Pastine-Brayton Williams, Clay Center, 12-10

6—Joe Goodman-Rex Robinette, Maranatha, 6-3

larned tennis regional.jpg
Larned's tennis team