Mixing things up.
Garden City High School swim coach Brian Watkins switched up his lineup Tuesday, having many of his boys swim in different events for a little change.
Conner Cupp finished first and Jeremiah Bunce came in a few tenths of a second behind him for second place in the 100-yard freestyle, and the 200-yard freestyle relay team rallied for first place to lead the Buffaloes to a third-place finish as a team Tuesday at Hutchinson.
“We swam out of position in some events, just to switch it up, but overall McPherson and Andover have some really good teams,” Watkins said. “We have some work to do to compete with them.”
Cupp won the event in 53.04 seconds, a 6A state consideration time. Bunce was a stroke behind with a time of 53.27.
The Buffalo 200-yard freestyle relay team of Esai Morales, Kobe Otero, Cupp and Bunce won the event with a time of 1:38.85, also a 6A state consideration time.
“We had a lot of mediocre swims compared to the numbers they have put up so far this year,” Watkins said.
GCHS’ Devin Chappel had the swim of the day according to Watkins, posting a 5:34.77 in the 500-yard freestyle. Chappel is within .07 seconds of a state consideration time in the event. He finished third in the race.
“There’s a good chance he will end up hitting that state auto-qualifying time by the end of the season,” Watkins said.
Other top-10 finishers for Garden City, their placing and times, include:
100-yard freestyle: Nate Morren, ninth, 58.62.
500-yard freestyle: Joel Contrarez, eighth, 6:29.97; and Rory James, ninth, 6:39.17.
50-yard freestyle: Chappel, fourth, 25.14; and N. Morren, ninth, 26.56.
100-yard butterfly: Otero, seventh, 1:02.65.
100-yard backstroke: Morales, fifth, 1:06.65; and Peter Hall, ninth, 1:11.69.
100-yard breaststroke: Otero, third, 1:10.44; Cupp, fourth, 1:10.65; and Lane Durst, ninth, 1:16.47.
200-yard freestyle: Bunce, eighth, 2:03.59.
200-yard freestyle relay: Alex DePaz, Brody Hoff, Emilio Arteaga and R. James, 10th, 1:57.28.
200-yard medley relay: Morales, Cupp, Otero and Chappel, fourth, 1:52.86; Hall, Durst, Contrarez and N.Morren, seventh, 1:58.90.
400-yard freestyle relay: Chappel, N.Morren, Contrarez and Bunce, third, 3:51.07; Hall, DePaz, Hoff and Morales, sixth, 4:09.58.
“This was an eye-opener for our boys to swim against this level of talent, and we know where we stack up with the big boys,” Watkins said. “I think they realize that we have a lot of work to do still. The boys did enjoy swimming some different events though and I think it could be a good refresher going in to the second half of the season.”
Garden City will be in action again on Tuesday, when the Buffaloes travel to compete at Hays in a Western Athletic Conference meet.