By William

EMPORIA – While they only won three events, the McPherson/Smoky Valley girls swim team out pointed Dodge City on Thursday to take the team title of the Emporia Invitational.

The Lady Bullpups/Lady Vikings rolled up 436 points which put them in first, just 26 points ahead of second place Dodge City. Host Emporia, Independence, Topeka West, and Buhler rounded out the top six of the 11-team invitational.

“Today was another great day of swimming for these girls,” noted Lady Bullpup/Lady Viking head coach Abby Bradstreet. “We were down one swimmer today but that did not defeat the girls. It was so much fun to watch them compete today, win events, improve their times, and get some new State times that they have been working so hard for this season.”

Danica Brunk kept up her win streak of winning an event every meet with a first-place finish in the 50 freestyle while she finished second in the 100-breaststroke. Brunk also swam the final leg on both the gold winning 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams that included a combination of Avery Van Der Wege, Karik Elliott, Kierstan Trost, and Alexis Smith.

Zoey Whorton earned a second-place finish in the 200 freestyle while Alexis Smith took second in the 100 backstroke and in the process earned a state qualifying time.

Coach Bradstreet concluded her post-meet reflections by adding, “Alexis Smith has been .02 seconds away from a state qualification time in the 100 backstroke for over half the season and today she finally hit the mark. It was such a great feeling to watch her meet that goal and then to see her entire team cheering her on and supporting her through it. We had several girls cut major time today in various events and overall, the team came out with a first place finish. I can not say it enough, but this is an amazing group of girls and their work ethic and how they support each other is something I am so proud of them for it.”

The Lady Bullpups/Lady Vikings will close out their regular season schedule on Tuesday at Hutchinson.


Team Standings = 1. LADY BULLPUPS/LADY VIKINGS 436; 2. Garden City 410; 3. Emporia 221.5; 4. Independence 205; 5. Topeka West 196; 6. Buhler 180; 7. Wichita Collegiate 162; 8. Coffeyville 111.5; 9. Topeka Seamon 95.5; 10. Topeka 94.5; 11. Wichita Independent 53.

New State Qualification = Alexis Smith in the 100 Backstroke.

New State Consideration = Kierstan Trost in the 100 Backstroke.

200 Medley Relay = 5th Lady Bullpups/Lady Vikings ‘A’ 2:16.49 (Karik Elliott, Zoey Whorton, Alexis Smith, Adrien Lochard); 10th Lady Bullpups/Lady Vikings ‘B’ 2:31.27 (Skylar Nutt, Emily Heskett, Mackenzie Heline, Mariah Andrewson).

200 Freestyle = 2nd Zoey Whorton 2:20.49; 5th Emily Heskett 2:37.08; 13th Avery Kruckenberg 2:50.60.

200 Individual Medley = 5th Alexis Smith 2:46.14; 6th Olivia Mader 2:53.86; 10th Mackenzie Heline 3:12.72.

50 Freestyle = 1st Danica Brunk 24.96; 4th Avery Van Der Wege 27.66; 20th Mariah Andrewson 33.32.

100 Butterfly = 3rd Kierstan Trost 1:09.87; 11th Mackenzie Heline 1:31.74; 14th Emily Heskett 1:39.97.

100 Freestyle = 4th Karik Elliott 1:00.66; 5th Avery Van Der Wege 1:01.43; 10th Adrien Lochard 1:07.27.

500 Freestyle = 3rd Zoey Whorton 6:29.12; 5th Adrien Lochard 6:49.33; 9th Mariah Andrewson 7:27.11.

200 Freestyle Relay = 1st LADY BULLPUPS/LADY VIKINGS ‘A’ 1:48.56 (Avery Van Der Wege, Alexis Smith, Kierstan Trost, Danica Brunk); 8th Lady Bullpups/Lady Vikings ‘B’ 2:08.20 (Mariah Andrewson, Skylar Nutt, Emily Heskett, Olivia Mader).

100 Backstroke = 2nd Alexi Smith 1:08.34; 5th Karik Elliott 1:09.53; 6th Kierstan Trost 1:11.84.

100 Breaststroke = 2nd Danica Brunk 1:17.62; 14th Olivia Mader 1:33.43; 16th Skylar Nutt 1:34.47.

 400 Freestyle Relay = 1. LADY BULLPUPS/LADY VIKINGS ‘A’ 3:56.38 (Karik Elliott, Avery Van Der Wege, Kierstan Trost, Danica Brunk); 4. Lady Bullpups/Lady Vikings ‘B’ 4:29.73 (Mackenzie Heline, Olivia Mader, Adrien Lochard, Zoey Whorton).