Indians dominate on senior day

By Grant Guggisberg

On senior day, the Manhattan High girls’ swimming and diving team didn’t get much of a challenge from the visiting Emporia Spartans on Wednesday.

In a meet that became a dual after Hayden dropped out, Emporia left its top swimmers at home, resulting in a clean sweep by Manhattan, which took both first and second place in every swimming event. In some cases, the Indians swept the top three spots in an event or in the case of the 50 free and 100 free, the top nine spots.

“Without top level competition, many of our girls were swimming out on their own,” Manhattan head coach Jerry Carpenter said. “And that can be challenging.”

With 201 team points to Emporia’s 64, Manhattan had no trouble winning on senior day, sending off a crop of seniors with a team victory as the top-level swimmers begin to prepare for next week’s Centennial League meet and the state meet the following week.

“With just the league and state meets to come, we will soon be determining our championship meet team,” Carpenter said. “This will comprise of the top three in each event and our best two relays in each event. The rest phase of our season will soon begin and we look forward to swimming very fast at season’s end.” 

In response to the decrease in competition level, Carpenter opted to swim his team in alternate events, but the Indians still came up with the clean sweep.

Amanda Buckwalter won the 50 free (26.42) and the 100 free (58.39), while Kelly Wichmann won the 100 fly (1:09.83) and the 500 free (5:44.04). Madison Monaco won the 200 free (2:26.28), while Lauren Casper finished first in the 200 individual medley (2:43.13).

Kayla Bush won the 100 back (1:12.02), while Marlee Evans took first in the 100 breast (1:25.57).

In diving, Tara Schroller won with a score of 191.85, with Lauren Carlson taking third with a 125.20.

Manhattan easily swept in the relays, taking first and second in all three races while going 1-2-3 in the medley relay.

With much of the team swimming for the final time on Wednesday, many athletes managed to drop time in their events.

Monaco dropped 3.17 seconds in winning the 200 free, while Hanna Hayden (2nd, 2:36.26), dropped 2.63 seconds.

Robyn Burton cut 1.22 seconds off her best time in the 50 free (18th, 33.71), while Roxy Gehring dropped 1.34 seconds (31st, 39.18). In the 100 free, Emily Cox (7th, 1:07.80) cut 2.38 seconds, while Samantha Williamson (1:14.10) cut 1.73 seconds and Burton (13th, 1:15.43) cut 1.98 seconds. Cox (19th, 1:21.15) cut 2.78 seconds, while Melissa Cross (22nd, 1:25.81) cut 1.15 and Jaalannee Dugassa (23rd, 1:28.61) cut 3.39. In the 100 breast, Lauren Goralczyk (2nd, 1:25.97) dropped 1.91 seconds.

Mariah Scipio had the biggest drop of the day in the 500 free (3rd, 6:03.50), dropping 19.72 seconds.

The Indians now get a week off before competing at the Centennial League meet in Topeka on May 16 (Diving on May 15).

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