Buffalo girls' swimming third at Wichita

GCHS Athletics
Garden City High School's Lana Rodriguez comes up for a breath and stroke in the 200-yard IM April 13 at the Garden City Family YMCA.

200 freestyle relay qualifies for state

All along the 2021 season, Garden City Buffaloes girls’ swimming coach Jennifer Meng has said her team may be small in numbers, but there is quality in the roster she has available.

That was never more evident than Saturday’s Wichita North Invitational where the Buffs battled many of the Wichita City League schools, Derby, Andover High and a couple of private Wichita area schools.

Yet, the Buffs brought home the third-place finish with 144 points, finishing behind Derby’s runaway 269 points and Wichita-Bishop Carroll’s 207 points. Their total was 22 points ahead of fourth-place Wichita-Trinity Academy’s 122. Considering that Derby earned 43 points in the diving portion of the competition, the Buffs weren’t that far off from the Panthers in the swim event totals.

Highlighting the day was the 200-yard freestyle relay team’s victory with a state qualifying time of 1:50.30, which was an improvement over their previous season best mark of 1:52.51. That team was comprised of senior Ashleigh Chappel, freshman Payton Tull, and sophomores Paige Chappel and Avery Meng.

“Once again, everyone contributes,” Meng said. “Of the 25 races we swam, 18 of them were personal bests.”

The third-place team finish came from top five finishes by Avery Meng in the 100-yard breaststroke (2nd, 1:17.00), Ashleigh Chappel in the 50-yard freestyle (5th, 28.25) and a pair of fourth-place finishes from Paige Chappel in the 200-yard freestyle (2:13.15) and the 500-yard freestyle (6:10.20), which was more than five seconds faster than her previous season best.

The 400-yard freestyle relay team also capped off the day’s performance with a season-best time of 4:13.44, beating their previous best of 4:18.29. That group was comprised of Ashleigh Chappel, Lana Rodriguez, Paige Chappel and Avery Meng.

Wichita North Invitational

Team Scores

1. Derby, 269; 2. Wichita-Bishop Carroll, 207; 3. Garden City, 144; 4. Wichita-Trinity Academy, 122; 5. Andover High, 119; 6. Wichita Heights, 114; 7. Valley Center, 102; 8. Wichita Northwest, 82; 9. Wichita North, 79; 10. Wichita-Collegiate, 52; 11. Wichita-The Independent, 25; 12. Wichita-Kapaun Mt. Carmel, 23; 13. Wichita Southeast, 4.

Garden City Results

200y medley relay—9. Lana Rodriguez, Lexi Arwine, Mya Garcia, Payton Tull, 2:13.20.

200y freestyle—4. Paige Chappel, 2:13.15.

200y individual medley—7. Avery Meng, 2:33.64; 10. Lana Rodriguez, 2:39.86.

50y freestyle—5. Ashleigh Chappel, 28.25.

100y butterfly—8. Mya Garcia, 1:21.14.

100y freestyle—8. Ashleigh Chappel, 1:01.15.

500y freestyle—4. Paige Chappel, 6:10.20 (6:15.23) previous best

200y freestyle relay—1.Ashleigh Chappel, Payton Tull, Paige Chappel, Avery Meng, 1:50.30.

100y backstroke—6. Lana Rodriguez, 1:11.35; 9. Payton Tull, 1:12.84.

100y breaststroke—2. Avery Meng, 1:17.00.

400y freestyle relay—4. Ashleigh Chappel, Lana Rodriguez, Paige Chappel, Avery Meng, 4:13.44; 9. Kennedy Johnson, Alya Arana, Daniela Rodriguez, Jessa York, 5:33.61.

Next meet for the team is Friday at the Marion Aquatics Center. First event begins at 2 p.m. The Buffs will host the Western Athletic Conference championships on May 13, at 4 p.m., at the Garden City Family YMCA.