Manhattan High swim coach Jerry Carpenter knows how tough the first meet after Christmas break can be.
The final team scores don’t reflect it, however.
The Indians won the three-team meet at the KSU Natatorium with 247 points, 102 points ahead of second-place Olathe South, with Great Bend rounding out the team scoring in third with 120 points.
“The first meet back from break is always a challenge,” Carpenter said. “Many of our swimmers were out of town over Christmas break and were not able to train. On the other hand, we had 20 guys who did train over the Christmas break and they endured some of the most challenging workouts so far this season.
“As always, we see this group of guys really step up at the first meet after break.”
Manhattan High took first place in seven events, including both the 400 freestyle and the 200 freestyle relays. Individually, Cameron Beauregard won the 200 individual medley, Brett Bandy won the 100 butterfly and Jordan DeLoach won the 100 freestyle. Zane Hayden won the 500 freestyle, 14 seconds quicker than his previous best, while Levi Jones won the 100 breast stroke.
Evan Olson won diving with a score of 209.65, 16.55 points better than his previous season best.
Carpenter was also impressed with some of his younger swimmers.
“Casey Hoffman is one of our freshman and has been working hard all season and his hard work paid off big today,” he said. “He swam the 100 butterfly for the first time and swam an outstanding time and had a great time drop in the 50 free and swam strong relay splits for us as well.”
In the individual medley, Zane Hayden took 2.50 seconds off his best time this year. In the 100 butterfly, Riley Ratliff finished in third, but knocked 1.13 seconds off his season-best time. In the 100 freestyle, several Manhattan swimmers managed to cut more than a full second off their season-best times, including Hayden Xavier, Austin French, Eli Herrera, Andre Middendorf, Seth Gotchey, Michael Hornsby, Pat Zenk, Josh Chapman and Bryan Aumbrust.
“As in all of our meets our veterans led the way,” Carpenter said. “In addition we had several guys have time drops.”
In the 50 freestyle, Hoffman improved by 1.51 seconds, Josh Chapman improved by 1.36 seconds and Michael Chapelle improved by 1.21 seconds.
Jack Hubler-Dayton took second in the 500 freestyle, knocking 8.26 seconds off his best time.
In the 100 breast, Xavier Hayden finished in fifth while trimming his best time by 2.67 seconds. Chapelle, Michael Everett and Shaun Messer all took at least two seconds off their best times as well.
“We are in the midst of our high volume training so the guys are getting stronger, but they are also tired,” Carpenter said. “I was thrilled with the way we competed and love the strong work ethic the majority our athletes are showing daily.”
Carpenter switched up some of his relays, with Austin Sibal, Jones, Ratliff and Hubler-Dayton taking second in the 200 medley relay, while DeLoach, Bandy, Beauregard and Ryan McHenry won the 200 freestyle relay.
DeLoach, Bandy Beauregard and Jones teamed in the 400 freestyle relay, winning by 18 seconds over their teammates McHenry, Woods, Hubler-Dayton and Ratliff, who finished in second.
The swim team hosts Newton and Emporia on Jan. 16 at the KSU Natatorium.