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Lady Panthers earn fourth straight WAC title; Panthers seize second place
spt kp GBHS girls team WEB
The Great Bend High School girls' bowling team won its fourth straight Western Athletic Conference title on Monday afternoon. Led by head coach Mike Perry and assistant coach Jim Mayberry, the team consists of Miranda Hejny, Allie Brodrick, Jessica Sterba, Abby Rose, Addie Soukup, Dakota Sanders, Hanna Pfeifer and Kylynn Keeler. - photo by Kevin Price Great Bend Tribune

Things went according to plan once the Western Athletic Conference Bowling Tournament finally got under way on Monday.
The Great Bend High School girls’ bowling team won a fourth straight WAC title at the tournament, which was postponed due to high winds. Great Bend’s boys finished in second place behind Garden City.
The Lady Panthers finished with 72 points in the WAC, beating second-place Garden City, which had 52.
“We came out well today,” GBHS head coach Mike Perry said. “We had a pretty good lead coming in, but I told the girls not to be satisfied with that. With the senior leadership that we have with Miranda (Hejny) and Jessica (Sterba), it was evident from the beginning that they wanted to compete and not just be happy sliding out the back door.
“They wanted to finish out on top being at home. That was nice to see.”
Hejny captured the WAC MVP for the girls. She turned in games of 223, 216 and 202 for a total series of 641, giving her first place in the tournament.
“Miranda, the best way I can describe her is a rock,” Perry said. “I’ve always done that ever since she was a freshman when she walked into our program. She’s been a leader since Day 1. She has three WAC MVPs. She could’ve had four very easily. We’ve had four straight WAC championships, and there have been players all through there, but Miranda has been the mainstay.
“I couldn’t be more proud of her. It was fun to see her strike out to end her last home match.”
Hejny was one of five girls who made the All-WAC teams. Allie Brodrick, Jessica Sterba, Abby Rose and Addie Soukup each made the cut as well, finishing in the top 12.
“That’s very impressive, because we had some girls that were new,” Perry said. “They either came up from junior varsity or as underclassmen. I think we did that with the boys last year when they went to state. I think we had all six on there, so having five of them on there, we’re kind of peaking where we want to peak.”
Perry won the WAC girls’ Coach of the Year award.
The Panthers finished in second place with 45 points in the WAC standings. Garden City won the WAC title with 70 points.
“On the boys’ side, it is kind of a tale of two cities,” Perry said. “We went through the first three sets and didn’t do well. Then we came through the Baker’s and pretty much dominated. We lost maybe two games in there.
“Going in, Garden City had a two-point lead on us, and we knew it was kind of futile. We were going to end up with second anyway, but I don’t think they came out geared to go. Once we got to head-to-head competition, they stepped it up. That was good to see.”
Jeff Mietler led the Panthers with games of 179, 187 and 195. He had a series of 561, placing third in the tournament.
Mietler was a first-team All-WAC selection. He was joined by Hunter Gregg, who was honorable mention.
Kendall Lloyd was Great Bend’s No. 2 bowler with a series of 533.
Great Bend is forced into a quick turnaround, heading to a Class 5-1A regional tournament on Thursday at Salina Sacred Heart. The boys start things off at 10 a.m., followed by the girls’ competition.
The top 2 teams qualify for the 5-1A state tournament. The top six individuals not part of the top 2 teams also qualify.
Perry said that he expects his teams’ recent successes to put targets on them.
“I’m sure we’re going in with bull’s eyes on our backs on both sides,” Perry said. “I don’t know what they other competition is. We’ve tried to look online. I’m just going to say that we’re going to go in and everybody’s going to want to beat us, especially on the boys’ side.”
The Great Bend coach said both sides are going to have to work hard for a chance at moving on in the postseason.
“The boys are going to have their work cut out for them,” Perry said. “If the girls come out and play like they’re supposed to, I think they should finish in the top 2.
“It’s just one of those things. It’s just that one time, one game, one moment. We’ve got to come out clicking.”

Western Athletic Conference


At Great Bend
Walnut Bowl


Team scores
1. Great Bend, 3,816; 2. Dodge City, 3,512; 3. Garden City, 3,340; 4. Liberal, 2,916

Great Bend results
Miranda Hejny 223-216-202—641; Allie Brodrick 186-204-142—532; Jessica Sterba 159-169-144—472; Abby Rose 141-167-150—458; Addie Soukup 152-145-148—445; Dakota Sanders 144-145-155—444

Baker’s results
Great Bend 225-184-208; Liberal 113-126-123
Dodge City 171-139-127; Great Bend 152-136-192
Great Bend 168-190-230; Garden City 147-173-128
Dodge City 172-126-221; Garden City 147-164-113
Garden City 114-142-162; Liberal 109-141-120
Dodge City 146-134-172; Liberal 123-115-147

Western Athletic Conference
Team            Points
Great Bend        72
Garden City       52
Dodge City        37
Liberal              13

WAC MVP — Miranda Hejny, Great Bend
Coach of the Year — Mike Perry, Great Bend


Team scores
1. Garden City, 4,081; 2. Great Bend, 3,890; 3. Liberal, 3,691; 4. Dodge City, 3,378

Great Bend results
Jeff Mietler 179-187-195—561; Kendall Lloyd 189-163-181—533; Hunter Gregg 135-211-167—513; Alex Morgan 202-125-162—489; Matt Black 169-170-144—483; Tylar Wagner 173-159-148—480

Baker’s results
Great Bend 184-215-204; Liberal 169-143-186
Great Bend 155-218-192; Dodge City 158-160-179
Great Bend 187-173-183; Garden City 159-247-169
Garden City 217-190-192; Dodge City 111-172-136
Garden City 214-204 178; Liberal 200-184-146

Western Athletic Conference
Teams           Points
Garden City       70
Great Bend        45
Liberal               34
Dodge City        25

WAC MVP — Tristan Funk, Garden City
Coach of the Year — Kip Nichols, Garden City