In the heat of the moment at the Capitol Federal Natatorium you can hear the cheers from the Manhattan Swim team, senior Chris Bedros yelling at senior Sean Hackenberg to keep going or senior Peyton Smith cheering cheering for his younger brother sophomore Nate Smith. This encouragement and hard work led the team to a second place victory with 437 points.
“A lot of really good stuff, [Junior Varsity] looked awesome today,” head coach Alex Brown said. “Tons of best times, which was the goal with adding this meet is to kind of give them their first tapered meet before league. And then when league gets here and they’re not going to have as many races as they were able to at this one, we can really see them explode, and they’re fully rested.”
The team has been preparing for the past week with J.V. starting their taper and varsity doing their hardest workouts to build up more endurance.
“Our team did really well for just going through a hell week set, and just swimming, like, I know a lot of people PR’d and after having a really hard set yesterday so that was nice and cool,” sophomore Mitchell Bunger said.
Many J.V. and varsity kids gained a new PR while dropping close to 30 seconds off their times.
“I was very impressed with [sophomore] Marshall Garren and had an awesome meet. [freshman] Thomas Craig had an awesome meet in their middle distance and distance free events for both of them. They were dropping insane amounts of time,” Brown said.
Garren had the biggest time drop taking off 38 seconds from his 200 meter freestyle.
“I swam for four events. The 100 meter the 200 meter, and then a, a 100 relay and then a 50 relay. I got PRs on all of them,” Garren said. “We did really well. Lots of people swam really well, especially the freshmen, who haven’t had a lot of practice on their starts; they did really well.”
But with the league and state meets coming up soon there are mixed feelings about the end of the season.
“I am very sad. This has been a huge part of my life. And everyone on the team is like my brothers. I’m really gonna miss this,” Bunger said.
The team has worked through many obstacles and have worked hard to still build a bond and have become a strong team.
“It’s always bittersweet. It’s sad because we see some of our seniors that have been great leaders for us for four years, go,” Brown said. “They’re a big part of our team. It’ll be nice having a week off. But as we get ready for the next girl season. Just get ready to continue on, it’s been a very different year, very, very different but we’ve adapted well. And we’re just happy that we got to compete and have a season in the first place.
“We’re excited for league. We want to definitely be in the top three of the top two if possible and get as many kids to state as possible.”