Five sports, five state appearances for HHS

Hillsboro spring sportsstate athletes at play:(above from left) Grant Shewey, Daniel Kunantaev, Dakota Kaufman,Franny Gottsch, Tyler Ediger. Tennis and golfhave completed their seasons while track andfield, softball and base-ball will begin statecompetition Friday.

Last year, Hillsboro High School made history by having all five of its spring sports programs represented in state competition.

This year, history has repeated itself.

Trojans in tennis, golf, track, baseball and softball have, or will shortly, play at the state?s highest level again this season.

?It?s a great feeling,? said Robert Rempel, HHS activities director. ?Our softball team has had those expectations, and our baseball team, too. I know there were times during the season when we weren?t sure.

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?The nice thing is they put it all together at the end, and they made it happen.?

The state parade began last week when Grant Shewey competed in singles at the Class 3-2-1A tennis tournament in Wamego. The sophomore won one of three matches.

On Monday, the golf team, including Daniel Kunantaev, Daniel Dick, Devin Dick and Justin King, competed at the state tournament in Hays after winning the Council Grove regional as a team a week earlier.

Four members of the Trojan track team?seniors Dakota Kaufman and Nathan Vogel, and juniors Callie Serene and Joel Allen?will be part of the 100th anniversary edition of the Kansas Track & Field Champ?ion??ships on Friday and Saturday at Cessna Stadium in Wichita.

Also on Friday, the HHS baseball team (16-7) will be the No. 6 seed when it opens play in the eight-team Class 3A tournament at Norvell Field in Manhattan. They will face No. 3 Wellsville (19-3) at 1:30 p.m.

Across town at Manhattan?s Twin Oaks Complex, the Trojan softball team (22-1) opens as the No. 2 seed at the eight-team Class 3A tournament. They will take on the defending champions, Thomas More Prep at 5 p.m.

HHS played TMP in the opening round last season after qualifying for state for the first time in program history.

?It?s nice that we actually have three full teams going to state this year,? Rempel said. A year ago, the golf team was represented by Kunantaev as an individual qualifier.

Rempel said it?s not unusual for a Class 3A school to have five sports programs in spring.

?At the 3A level it?s definitely changing?it?s kind of that in-between, where some have the five sports and some don?t,? he said.

Earlier this spring, four of Hillsboro?s spring sports programs?golf, tennis, baseball and softball?were on the list of potential budget cuts to offset state funding reductions. In the end, sports escaped unscathed.

Rempel credits the quality of students and coaches for Hills?boro?s across-the-board success.

?I absolutely say we?ve got a great group of kids, and we have great coaches,? he said.

?We have kids who have been there before,? he added. ?If you take a look at the girls? teams, for the last two years they?ve gone in volleyball twice, basketball twice, softball now twice?and in track for our girls its flat-out consistent for them.?

Rempel said the athletic programs are in a groove these days.

?I know Hillsboro?s been in that groove for a long time with different activities,? he said. ?They?ve all been successful, really. But when you get them all at once, it?s really nice.?

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