With just two meets remaining before postseason coach Steve Beaumont and the Panthers are in the fine tuning process.
Out of nine teams in competition at Friday’s final home meet, Great Bend posted a second place finish with 421 team points behind meet winner Newton at 497.
“I am really pleased with how the girls competed at the meet,” Beaumont said following Friday’s competition. “Newton is one of the top 5A teams in the state and we stayed with them right up until the last few events. Our times are really starting to drop and that is what we hope to see as we get down to the last couple of weeks.”
Manhattan and McPherson rounded out the top four teams with 313 and 273 team points.
Camryn Dunekack had a big day winning the 50 and 100 freestyle. Dunekack timed in at 26.44 in 50 then finished with a time of 59.03 in the 100. Senior Madeline Vesta competed in her final home meet with a second place finish and a time of 1:12.16 in the 100 meter fly. Fellow senior Michaela Cape won bronze in the 100 meter backstroke clocking in at 1:11.53. Kira Cook finished in third place in the 200 freestyle at 2:15.37.
Turning to relay competition, Dunekack joined Cape, Cook and Emma Williams to win the 200 free relay at 1:51.91. Cook, Katy Jerke, Vesta and Dunekack then teamed up to place second in the 400 free relay with a time of 4:09.11.
Beaumont praised the team on their endurance during the final leg of events.
“What I was most pleased with is the way we are finishing races,” he said. “We are coming off the last wall and really finishing races well. It’s an attitude thing really and this team does a great job of competing well in tight races.”
The coach also noted the contributions of this year’s newcomer and paid tribute to his seniors Vesta, Cape, Anna Frizzell and Rachel Bussen.
“Camryn just continues to improve her times,” said Beaumont. “She is a great competitor. When you consider that she is splitting her time between the pool and running for the track team her times are even more impressive. She swam two great races today.”
“Our seniors had a great meet today,” Beaumont continued. “We’ve been blessed to have them as part of our team for the last four years. They are tremendous young ladies and as we get down to the end of the season we are going to need their leadership even more.”
The Panthers will have a week between the Newton meet on May 7 and the WAC meet May 14.