Hillsboro tennis player Harry Faber earned a spot in the state tennis tournament, May 10 and 11 in Hillsboro, with a second-place finish at regionals Friday in Wichita.
Faber defeated Nathaniel Clennan of Hutchinson Trinity Catholic, 7-5 and 6-0, and Caleb Hendricks of Sterling, 6-1, 2-6, and 6-2, in the semifinal match.
“Harry continues to play outstanding tennis and battles for every point, which makes him tough to beat,” head coach Stuart Holmes said. “His semifinal win in three sets was a terrific match with long rallies as well as some excellent net play.”
He lost to Jake Norman of Wichita Independent, 6-1 and 6-1; Norman is a two-time state champion.
Faber finishes the regular season with a 21-8 record.
“Placing second at regionals is a very high finish that should help keep him from having to play the other top players in the state in the early rounds at state,” Holmes said. “But, everyone at state has some strengths or else they wouldn’t have qualified.”
Daniel Gray won one match in the regional tournament defeating Andrew DiBetto of Neodesha, 6-1 and 6-3, in the first round. He lost to Norman, 6-0 and 6-0, in the second round, and then fell to Anthony Lloyd of Wichita Independent 6-2, 3-6, and 6-0.
“Daniel came close to qualifying for state as he lost a three-set match in the round that would have earned him a state berth,” Holmes said. “Daniel played some of his best tennis in the second set to force a third set but wasn’t able to maintain that level in the final, deciding set.”
Faber also won third place April 29 in the Central Kansas League Tournament.
Faber defeated Nick Meng of Kingman, 6-0 and 6-1, and Zach Brashear of Sterling, 6-4 and 6-0. He lost to Keegan LeFevre of Hesston, 6-2 and 6-0. LeFevre won the league tournament over Thomas Mayberry of Pratt. Both of those players compete for 4A schools.
“Not only has Harry earned All-league in tennis last year and this year but he takes an 18-7 record into the postseason,” head coach Stuart Holmes said.
Gray took fifth place in his bracket. He defeated Cody McKinnis of Haven, 9-0. He lost his first round match to Ryan Leroux of Kingman, 6-4 and 7-6 (2). Gray is 9-12 this season, but two of those losses came via tiebreak.
“He continues to be competitive,” Holmes said.
No. 1 doubles team Jeff Pritchard and Tyler Funk lost 6-4 and 6-7 (7-5 and 10-6) to the third-seeded team from Smoky Valley. Funk and Pritchard then defeated the team from Haven, 9-6, but fell to the team from Kingman, 9-3.
“Jeff and Tyler played maybe their best tennis of the year,” Holmes said. “Our guys played for around two hours in the longest match of the day and won the second set before the match was decided in a third set super tie-breaker.”
After losing their first match, No. 2 doubles team Ty Carey and River Cecil defeated the team from Kingman, 9-7.