Garden City High School’s boys swimming team made a big splash at its first Western Athletic Conference meet on Thursday.
In Great Bend, the Buffs tank squad finished third among the five WAC teams, scoring 309 points to finish behind champion Great Bend (405) and runner-up Dodge City (335). Trailing the Buffs were Liberal and Hays.
“We had a great meet with several highlights,” Buffs head coach Brian Watkins said.
Among those were Aaron Schafer’s gold-medal win in the 100-yard breaststroke, establishing a new WAC record in the process (1:10.48).
Runner-up individual finishes came from Will Keller in the 50-yard freestyle (55.83) and Nathaniel Hubbard in the 100-yard backstroke (1:11.44).
Also placing second was the 200-yard medley relay team (four different strokes by four different swimmers) with Hubbard, Schafer, Avey Arana and Keller clocking a time of 1:57.76.
“I’m very proud of that group as they cut four seconds off their time from a week ago,” Watkins said.
While not finishing in the top two, Watkins said that there were significant time cuts by several of the swimmers.
Dominic Combs in the 200-yard individual medley was one, Arana improved his 100-yard butterfly by five seconds while Brody Hoff trimmed 27 seconds off his 500-yard freestyle mark.
“The future of this team is bright,” Watkins said. “I couldn’t be more proud of how well we performed today. We have a couple of holes to fill in the lineup for next year, but we just need to continue to train them up.”