SALINA—It was not the way you usually find a swim meet scored, but the McPherson High School’s boys swim team will take them as they traveled to Salina on Thursday and swam two meets at once with Salina South and Salina Central, while out dueling the larger numbered swim teams once again to take victory in both meets.

What happened is that while all the teams swam against each other, all the times were put together and then split up to where one set of team scores was matched up to Salina Central and another set of team scores was matched up to Salina South, giving the swim meet the equal to two meets in one – and the Bullpups won Both.

In the meet considered the Salina Central Division, McPherson racked up 540 points to out distance runner-up Derby who had 469, while Salina Central finished third with 351 followed by Andover Central (340), Andover (209) and Central Christian with eight.

For the meet considered the Salina South Division, the Bullpups once again came out on top, this time with 532 cumulative points, with Derby once again finishing second with 453 and Salina South landed in third with 417. Trailing them were Andover Central with 338, Andover at 203 and Central Christian with nine.

“Not sure that I expected this,” exclaimed Bullpup Head Coach Matt Morrow in his post-meet reflections. “With top swimmers from Andover Central, Salina South and a 30-plus team from Derby, my initial thoughts on this meet were that we would have to swim very well and that even if we did, it would be close. I told these guys before the meed that we had to have maximum effort from everyone to have a chance and boy did they go out and do it!”

Not only were most of the other teams larger in numbers, but the Bullpups spotted Derby and Salina South nearly 40 points right from the start because they do not have any divers that compete in the diving event.

As they have done all season, McPherson simply went out and scored first-place finishes in seven of the eleven events they competed in, including four golds for both Justus Hampton and Will Powers.

Hampton scored his gold medals by winning the 200 Freestyle and 100 Backstroke while being a swim leg on both the champion 200 Medley Relay and 200 Freestyle Relay teams. Will Powers gained individual golds for winning his 50 Freestyle and 100 Butterfly while also being a swim leg on the 200 Medley Relay and 200 Freestyle Relay teams. Joining those two to earn golds on the two champion Bullpup relay teams were Silas Steinert and Dawson VanGoethem in the 200 Medley Relay, with VanGoethem and Zach LeBlanc joining them on the 200 Freestyle Relay team.

Van Goethem also had a strong meet as he scored a first-place finish in the 100 Freestyle and a second-place finish in the 100 Breaststroke to go with his two relay golds.

Speaking of his individual swimmers, Coach Morrow noted, “Justus (Hampton) had another big meet and earned his State qualifying time in the 200 Freestyle. Will (Powers) just missed the school record in the 50 Freestyle by .03 seconds, while our 200 Freestyle Relay quartet of Justus (Hampton), Dawson (Van Goethem), Zach (LeBlanc) and Will (Powers broke the school record. Matt Powers qualified for state in the 200 Individual Medley in finishing second and third in the event today. Dawson (Van Goethem) took almost a second and a half off his best time in the 100 Freestyle and then qualified for state with his second-place finish in the 100 Breaststroke, and Justus (Hampton) got a state time in the 100 Backstroke.”

“Almost every swimmer today set personal records and by the time we were done we had won two meets, each by over 70 points,” said Coach Morrow in the conclusion of his post-meet reflections. “This was a great meet with a lot of energy and we had some McPherson folks show up to watch and the boys really responded to the support.”

The Bullpup swimmers will now have an eight-day break before getting back into the competitive pool again on Saturday, January 19, when they swim in one of the biggest meets of the season at Wichita Heights. The meet will include many of the top teams in both Class 6A and 5A.

Bullpup Individual Results at Salina (Salina Central finish/Salina South finish):

200 Medley Relay: 1/1. Bullpup ‘A’ team (Silas Steinert, Dawson VanGoethem, Justus Hampton, Will Powers) 1:43.84; 6/6. Bullpup ‘B’ team (Rece Reiman, Matt Powers, Rhys Vanderhoof, Simon Steinert) 1:54.89.

200 Freestyle: 1/1. Justus Hampton 1:48.32; 5/6. Cody Achilles 2:08.14; 7/7. Gage Stafford 2:12.10.

200 Individual Medley: 3/2. Matt Powers 2:13.56; 4/3. Silas Steinert 2:16.04; 5/4. Rhys Vanderhoof 2:20.62.

50 Freestyle: 1/1. Will Powers 21.99; 4/5. Zach LeBlanc 25.02; 9/12. Wesley Wurm 26.72.

100 Butterfly: 1/1. Will Powers 54.90; 5/5. Rhys Vanderhoof 1:01.59; 10/11. Gage Stafford 1:13.28.

100 Freestyle: 1/1. Dawson VanGoethem 50.85; 6/6. Zach LeBlanc 55.92; 9/10. Wesley Wurm 59.58.

500 Freestyle: 5/4. Rece Reiman 5:53.51; 6/5. Simon Steinert 5:59.54; 7/6. Cody Achilles 6:06.38.

200 Freestyle Relay: 1/1. Bullpup ‘A’ team (Justus Hampton, Dawson VanGoethem, Zach LeBlanc, Will Powers) 1:31.77; 3/4. Bullpup ‘B’ team (Wesley Wurm, Logan Ediger, Cody Achilles, Silas Steinert) 1:44.64.

100 Backstroke: 1/1. Justus Hampton 56.56; 5/4. Silas Steinert 1:00.78; 6/5. Rece Reiman 1:02.76.

100 Breaststroke: 2/2. Dawson VanGoethem 1:06.18; 5/7. Matt Powers 1:10.78; 8/11. Ethan Burger 1:16.57.

400 Freestyle Relay: 4/3. Bullpup ‘A’ team (Zach LeBlanc, Rhys Vanderhoof, Simon Steinert, Matt Powers) 3:41.00; 6/6. Bullpup ‘B’ team (Rece Reiman, Wesley Wurm, Gage Stafford, Cody Achilles) 3:56.85.

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