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Kuhlman leads Panthers at Class 5-1A swim meet
Class 5-1A State Swimming
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TOPEKA — The Great Bend High School boys’ swim team only brought six swimmers competing in seven events.
In spite the fact that they were short a majority of a team, the Panthers still finished in 17th place out of 31 teams with 42 points.
Miege won the state team title with 261 points.
“We had a really good weekend, a good meet,” GBHS head coach Steve Beaumont said. “Kids swam hard and turned in a lot of season-best times, which is exactly what you want to see at the state meet.”
Senior Justin Kuhlman was Great Bend’s big winner, placing third in the 100-meter backstroke.
He clocked in at 55.39 seconds in the final, shaving .47 of a second off his preliminary time on Friday.
Kuhlman also medaled in the 100 fly, placing eighth as the top 8 swimmers receive medals.
Kuhlman, who was a second-team All-State award winner for his performance, finished in a time of 56.91 in the fly finals.
“He’s been here for four years, now,” Beaumont said. “This has been his best performance. He swim much more relaxed, which comes from his previous experience and just knowing what it takes to win at this level.
“This is just a great way to end, what was for him, a phenomenal high school career.”
Two of Great Bend’s relay teams made it through the preliminaries on Friday to compete in the consolation heats on Saturday — the 200 freestyle relay (Josh Schridde, Keaton Elliott, Jack Pumford and Cory Merten) and the 400 freestyle relay (Kuhlman, Merten, Elliott and Schridde).
The 400 freestyle relay team placed 11th with a time of 3:38.18.
The 200 freestyle relay squad finished in 16th place at 1:39.71.
Schridde placed 22nd in the 200 individual medley at 2:24.25, and 32nd in the 100 freestyle at 55.95 on Friday.
Great Bend’s 200 medley relay (Kuhlman, Michael Raymer, Schridde and Merten) finished in 18th place, narrowly missing the top 16 to advance to Saturday’s heats with a time of 1:52.46.
“Our relays did a great job,” Beaumont said. “I thought coming into the meet that we’d have to work hard getting one relay into Saturday’s heats, and we were able to sneak a second one in there.
“Our 200 freestyle relay knocked off about three seconds from their seed time, which was great. Our 400 freestyle relay knocked off a couple seconds as well. They just swam hard and it was nice to see all of the hard work paying off for these guys.”

                   — Kevin Price

Class 5-1A State Swim Meet



Team scores
1. Miege, 261; 2. Wichita Heights, 242; 3. Blue Valley Southwest, 193; 4. Maize South, 142; 5. Rose Hill, 142; 6. Hayden, 133; 7. St. James Academy, 122; 8. Carroll, 98; 9. Hays, 87; 9. McPherson, 87; 11. Newton, 83; 12. KC Turner, 80; 13. Kapaun, 72; 14. Salina Central, 67; 15. Winfield, 44; 16. El Dorado, 43; 17. Great Bend, 42; 18. Shawnee Heights, 41; 19. Mill Valley, 38; 20. Wichita West, 37; 21. Salina South, 34; 22. Wichita Independent, 34; 23. Wichita Collegiate, 28; 24. Seaman, 25; 25. Lansing, 14; 25. Parsons, 14; 27. Paola, 13; 28. Emporia, 12; 29. Osawatomie, 11; 30. Leavenworth, 9; 31. Wichita Trinity, 4

Great Bend results
200-meter medley relay — 18. GBHS ‘A’ relay (Justin Kuhlman, Michael Raymer, Josh Schridde, Cory Merten), 1:52.46
200 freestyle relay — 16.  GBHS ‘A’ relay (Schridde, Keaton Elliott, Jack Pumford, Merten), 1:39.71
400 freestyle relay — 11. Great Bend ‘A’ relay (Kuhlman, Merten, Elliott, Schridde), 3:38.18
100 fly — 7. Kuhlman, 56.91
100 backstroke — 3. Kuhlman, 55.39
200 individual medley — 22. Schridde, 2:24.25
100 freestyle — 32. Schridde, 55.95