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No. 1 Sports Moment of 2019 - Legendary Centralia and Nemaha Valley Head Coach Kimbrook Tennal Announced to KSHSAA Hall of Fame
By Jonny Kane
Copyright: MSC Sports

It’s been a true treat to look back at the top sports moments of 2019. It’s nice sometimes to sit back and marvel in the greatness that we get to see each year in Northeast Kansas and it’s also a reminder to not take it for granted.

We have revealed nine of our top sports moments from this year so it’s now time to reveal No. 1.

There are several moments that could have been our top sports moment of 2019, but any time a legend is inducted into any type of hall of fame it will always take the cake.

In early December the Kansas State High School Activities Association announced that legendary Centralia and Nemaha Valley head coach Kimbrook Tennal would be its newest member of the KSHSAA Hall of Fame giving us our top moment of the year.

In his 20 years coaching volleyball at both Nemaha and Centralia Tennal finished with a mind-boggling record of 791-49 (.941) while winning 11 state championships including twice going back-to-back-to-back.

Tennal, a 2017 Kansas Volleyball Association Hall of Fame inductee, had been the head man of the Panthers since 2007 and at Centralia since 1997.

In ‘97 Tennal was hired with his wife at Centralia to coach volleyball and together they won eight state titles in a row and had a 126-match win streak ranking second best in the state. Tennal took over in ‘07 as the head coach and led Centralia to three State titles and four state runner-up finishes.

He coached six undefeated seasons which included a 137-match win streak and other streaks of 80, 78, 76 and 52 consecutive victories.

He finished his career winning five of the last six 1A state titles and posted a 100-1 record in his last two years.

In 14 years of coaching girls’ basketball, Tennal compiled a staggering record of 307-48 (.865) with three state championships, two runner-up finishes and two third place finishes.

He also coached 14 gold medal athletes in pole vault, javelin and discus in 16 years.

Perhaps his biggest victory came in his final match as Centralia claimed a third straight state championship giving the Panthers a 15th state title in school history and Coach Tennal smiles despite dealing with colon cancer which forced him to retire after the match.

Tennal will forever be a legend throughout the state of Kansas and with a well-deserved Hall of Fame announcement takes our top sports moment of 2019.

©2020 MSC Sports
Hiawatha, KS 66434
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