After a two-year absence atop the Centennial League, Washburn Rural took it back on Friday, beating out two-time defending champion Manhattan High at the Capitol Federal Natatorium in Topeka.
The Indians scored 389 points to finish second, while Washburn Rural scored a lofty 459 points. Emporia was third and Topeka High was fourth. Both MHS and Washburn Rural have held the title three times in the past six years.
The Indians have a number of swimmers qualified for this week’s Class 6A state meet, including all three relay teams.
Pilar Dritz is qualified in the 200-yard and 500 free. Katy Van Nevel and Samantha Gray will be in diving and Alana Bucholtz will swim the 100 back.
MHS coach Jerry Carpenter said several others might get consideration times into state. The long-time swimming coach said overall it was a solid meet from his team.
“It was a good meet for us,” he said. “All of the girls stepped and swam well. We had a majority of best times.”
Manhattan opened the meet with its 200 medley relay finishing third, as Bucholtz, Lucienne Lange, Makayla Walters and Meagan Williams posted a time of 2:07.23, two seconds behind second place and 12 behind first place.
The relay of Emily Cady, Katie Bussman, Keziah McNair and Janae Horchem was seventh.
Dritz won a title in the 200 free with a time of 2:01.65, while Hannah Funk finished in fifth. Walters took fourth in the 200 individual medley and McNair was 13th and Williams in 14th.
Bucholtz finished third in the 50 free and Mariah Scipio was right behind her in fourth, while Emma Bartlett finished 14th.
Katy Van Nevel took second in one-meter diving, while Samantha Gray was fifth and Tara Schroller in 10th.
The Indians got a third-place finish from Walters in the 100 fly. McNair finished 11th and Bussman was 12th. Scipio finished third in the 100 fly, with Funk two spots behind her in fifth. Bartlett was in 12th.
Dritz won her second title of the day in the 500 free, edging out Washburn Rural’s Molly Rockefeller with a time of 5:22.40. Marlee Evans took 16th.
The 200 free relay of Scipio, Walters, Funk and Dritz won with a time of 1:46.35, beating out a team from Washburn Rural by 1 second.
Bucholtz just missed a title in the 100 back, finishing second, while Cady was in 13th. Lange was seventh in the 100 breast and Williams was ninth, while Bussman finished 11th.
The 400 free relay of Scipio, Funk, Bucholtz and Dritz finished second to end the meet, nearly 6 seconds behind the first-place time of 3:46.43 from Washburn Rural.
Dritz and Bucholtz were named first-team all league at the end of the meet. Walters, Scipio, Funk and Van Nevel were named to the second team.
The Indians will be right back at the Capitol Federal Natatorium this weekend for the 6A state meet.