BSHS boys swim team notches first victory before winter break
Preston Williams was encouraged by his team’s performance in the pool in its final meet before winter break last week in Osawatomie.
The Braves’ head coach said he has seen steady improvement in the season’s first month, capped by BSHS earning its first victory in a meet that featured Osawatomie and Parsons.
“They’ve been getting their intensity up,” Williams said. “They’re in a race and need to act like they’re in a race. I was impressed by that.”
Williams said he thinks the Braves have gotten better every meet and that there was a clear improvement from their last meet.
One of the things Williams has been stressing all year is conditioning. He said the Braves are getting in shape by doing about 40 minutes of workouts on dry land before getting into the pool by doing pushups, burpees and squat jumps.
Like he said at the beginning of the season, those that ran cross country or played soccer are in better shape.
“I’m always impressed with Jacob Kraus.” Williams said. “We did a burpee contest and he beat me. He’s a competitor. He got to pick the warm-up that day. He’s a really good athlete.”
Kraus won the 100-yard backstroke in 1:16.32, but didn’t improve his time. He did improve his 100-yard freestyle time by two seconds, placing third with a 1:03.53.
He is also a part of the medley relay that took off six seconds, but Williams thinks Kraus could have been faster in the backstroke, swimming the 50-yard event in 34.46 seconds.
“I’m trying to figure out who really wants to be a part of these relays and who’s ready to step up,” Williams said. “It’s definitely a work in progress.”
Williams was impressed with the 200-yard freestyle relay. Jack Klingele swam the final leg in 27.09 seconds.
“I didn’t have Jacob or Thomas (Hook), but I was impressed with that 27.09,” Williams said. “With Jacob and Thomas, I think it could be a pretty good relay. All our relays are within state consideration time.”
Griffin Mareske took about a second off his 100-yard freestyle time with a 1:14.38. He also placed second in the 100-yard breaststroke.
“I’ve coached Griffin for three years on the YMCA team,” Williams said. “I’ve always known how hard of a worker he is. I’m such a big fan of his. I think he’s going to have a good career.”
Jacob Sopher continued his improvement, taking two seconds off his 100-yard backstroke with a 3:14.81.
Skyler Lucas placed fourth in the 200-yard freestyle and took 15 seconds with a 2:38.94.
“I was pretty impressed by that,” Williams said. “He’s got a nice stroke. My biggest thing with him is trying to get him to get that killer instinct and try to take a race like it’s supposed to be taken. He took off time in his 50 as well.”
The Braves have about four weeks off until their next meet on Jan. 8. Per KSHSAA rules, they will have a dead weak during the week of Christmas. They then will have six practices before the meet and Williams is unsure if they’re going to have two-a-days.
“I’ve thought about it,” Williams said. “It would be nice to do. When they’re out of class, we’re going to practice from 7 to 9:30 am.”