The inagural season of swimming for boys comes to a close with many accomplishments and records set along the way, ending with five swimmers sent to state. Seniors Aaron Akin, Chris Stack, Alex Kain, junior Wyatt Brecunier, sophomore Callahan Eckardt, and freshman Richard Wooten competed at state on Friday, February 15. The boys placed 11th out of 27 teams, representing the school well for it’s first year. Along with being sent to state, Eckardt and Stack were selected for Second Team All State Team.
Practice for the girls swim team began on Monday, February 25. The team consists of 46 girls coached by Amy Hanna and Alissa Ruffin. Sophomore Michaela Dervin feels this upcoming season will be a thrilling one.
“It’s going to be exciting,” Dervin said. “We’ve got team members giving their best and might even have state qualifiers.”
The first meet of the season for girls will be held on Wednesday, March 28. at Blue Valley West starting at 4 p.m.
These are the final results from the boys state swimming.
200 Medley Relay: Eckardt, Akin, Stack, and Kain finished 15th overall with a time of 1:51.03
200 Free: Eckardt placed 8th overall with a time of 1:54.31
200 IM: Stack placed 8th overall with a time of 2:07.36
100 Fly: Akin placed 23rd overall with a time of 1:01.95
500 Free: Eckardt placed 6th overall with a time of 5:11.97
200 Free Relay: Kain, Akin, Eckardt, and Stack finished 11th overall with a time of 1:36.47
100 Breast: Akin placed 11th overall with a time of 1:06.70
100 Breast: Stack placed 5th overall with a time of 1:05.17
400 Free Relay: Brecunier, Wooten, Kemper, and Kain finished 21st with a time of 4:00.70
The Science Olympiad team placed sixth out of 32 schools at the Thunder Invitational at St. James on Saturday, Jan. 19. This is the best the team has placed at this tournament.
The team received third place medals in Write It/Do It and Forensics, a fourth place medal in Technical Problem Solving, and fifth place medals in Thermodynamics, Robot Arm, and Designer Genes.
10 total members of the team received a medal, three of them were underclassmen.
“There was a pretty strong showing from the seniors,” Science Olympiad sponsor Jennifer Aytes said. “Some of the underclassmen stepped up and placed this tournament.”
Science Olympiad member senior Chris Gillespie is looking forward to seeing improvement in future tournaments.
“We should’ve done better but we did well enough,” Gillespie said. “It’s a good place to be in the season. It will be a good jumping point for our next meet in two weeks.”
Here is a list of all the winners:
Write It/Do It, third place, seniors Amanda Platt and Ashley Hague
Forensics, third place, seniors Amanda Platt and Ashley Hague
Technical Problem Solving, fourth place, freshmen Jack Booth and T-Ying Lin
Thermodynamics, fifth place, senior Chris Gillespie and sophomore Kyal Long
Robot Arm, fifth place, senior Aaron Akin and junior Tyler Hinnen
Designer Genes, fifth place, juniors Connor Oswald and Alyssa Hobson
The smell of chlorine and humid air filled the natatorium at Chisholm Trail Middle School on Monday, Jan. 14 as the boys swim team placed fourth against Olathe South, Shawnee Mission North, Shawnee Mission Northwest and De Soto High School.
“I thought [this meet] was a good challenge,” sophomore Teigan Brown said. “[We were against] 6A schools so it was good to see them at a competition.”
The results of the meet were:
200 free: sophomore Callahan Eckardt, 4th place
200 IM: senior Chris Stack, 1st place, junior Brendan Frieders, 4th place
50 free: senior Alex Kain, 10th place
100 fly: senior Aaron Akin, 2nd place
100 free: Chris Stack, 1st place and a state qualifying time
500 free: Eckardt, 2nd place
100 breast: Akin, 1st place, Frieders, 7th place, sophomore Nick Stack, 8th place
“I like the challenge and how hard it is compared to other sports,” Brown said. “It’s a new sport to me so that’s kind of cool.”
The boys swim team competed at its third meet of the season on Tuesday, Jan. 8 at Turner High School. The team finished fourth out of eight teams, competing against De Soto, Bonner Springs, Washington, Turner, Leavenworth, and Field Kindley High Schools.
The results of the meet were an overall success, according to swim coach Alissa Ruffin.
“We went into the meet with incredible energy,” Ruffinsaid. “Once again we walked away with numerous individual achievements.”
Sophomore Callahan Eckardt also thought highly of the meet.
“[The meet] was fantastic,” Eckardt said. “We had a lot of time drops, and a plethora of energy.”
While there were positives of the meet, according to Eckardt there were spots that could have used improvement.
“To strategically gain more points, we could have placed our swimmers in different races and given more effort,” Eckardt said.
Along with many individual record times broken, state qualifying times were met by senior Chris Stack in the 100 backstroke and freestyle, senior Aaron Akin in the 200 IM, and Eckardt in the 100 freestyle.
The next meet will be held on Monday, Jan. 14 at 4 p.m. at Chisholm Middle School.
For senior Aaron Akin, this winter sports season marks the end of a nearly four-year period of waiting to represent his school through his sport, swimming.
Akin had been swimming on club teams for eight years and wanted to contribute to his school through something that’s important to him.
“I’ve been waiting for a swim team the entire time I’ve been here,” Akin said.
With three school records under his belt so far, Akin has nothing but enthusiasm for the rest of the season.“I’m excited,”
Akin said “I finally get to represent my school my senior year.”
Although dedicated to his team, Akin admits that he isn’t extreme in his methods.
“I’m pretty dedicated,” Akin said. “But I don’t go all out and be like ‘let’s shave our legs’ before a swim meet.”
The jazz band received a one, the highest possible rating, at its first ever competition at the Baker University Jazz Festival on Friday, Nov. 16.
The band was judged in two main categories: artistic performance and technical performance. The subcategories of artistic performance include improvisation, style, presentation and musicality. The technical performance subcategories include timing and rhythm, ensemble playing, intonation and articulation.
Jazz band director Deb Steiner enjoyed going to the competition.
“I was pretty excited [because] it’s the first time we’ve gone to contest,” Steiner said. “I feel like we did a great job.”
Steiner also said that the jazz band’s hard work impacted its performance.
“We did a lot [to prepare],” Steiner said. “We listened to lots of different jazz styles and compared and contrasted them, and of course a lot of practice.”
Senior jazz band member Aaron Akin said the band played confidently during its performance.
“I thought we had the mentality that we knew what we were doing,” Akin said. “We did a lot better on stage than in practicing.”
Science Olympiad took sixth place at its first tournament on Saturday, Nov. 9 at Shawnee Mission South. In addition to the team ranking, eleven members were recognized individually in their events. For a list of placements, see below.
In preparation for the tournament, the team has been practicing two nights a week since the beginning of October.
Co-sponsor Jennifer Aytes said the results of the tournament were very promising.
“[Co-sponsor Anne Ring and I] were pleased. I think this was a strong start for them,” Aytes said. “Hopefully in the next month they can focus in and work on the things they know they need to work on.”
Senior Ashley Hague was equally optimistic about team’s prospects for the rest of the season.
“We have a lot of work ahead of us,” Hague said. “But we’re in a great place right now.”
Senior Aaron Akin and junior Tyler Hinnen – third place in Robot Arm.
Senior CJ Hopkins and junior Connor Oswald – fourth in Designer Genes.
Seniors Amanda Platt and Hague- third in Forensics and fourth in Write It, Do It.
Freshmen Rohit Biswas and Nick Booth – fifth in Astronomy.
Sophomore Henry Hanson and Akin – fifth in Mag Lev.
Freshmen Jack Booth and Nick Booth – sixth place in Remote Sensing.
Seniors Chris Gillespie and Platt – sixth in Thermodynamics.
The varsity girls cross country team placed fifth at the 5A Kansas State Cross Country Meet on Saturday, Oct. 27.
Freshmen Amber Akin and Ellie Wilson placed sixth and eighth respectively,both earning All-State honors. Akin finished with a time of 15:32 and Wilson finished with a time of 15:33. Of the four boys who individually qualified, freshman Derek Meeks placed highest at 34th place with a time of 17:11.
According to head coach Mark Chipman, the cross country boys have qualified for state seven times and this was the girls 10th time qualifying.
“The fact that the team reached their goal of being in the top five [is what I am happiest about]. That tied our best team finish ever,” Chipman said.
Akin is pleased to earn the honor of All-State.
“It’s a big accomplishment. We’ve been training since the summer, it’s all motivation to do our best. Pain and sweat, it’s all for the race,” Akin said.
According to Akin the team couldn’t have done it without the coaches’ motivation throughout the season.
“The coaches have been very supportive. We’ve had some tough practices that have really pushed us,” Akin said. “We might not have liked [the motivation] at the moment, but it helped us.”
The cross country team came in second at the meet at Bonner Springs High School Saturday, Sept. 15.
Freshman Amber Akin came in third in the girls varsity race with a time of 15:20, setting a new school record. In the boys varsity race sophomore Callahan Eckardt came in 13th with a time of 17:15.
In junior varsity, junior CJ Meeks came in first and sophomore Maddie Butterfield came in 20th.
Ekhart feels that the team is going to do well over the course of the season.
“I feel great about the team this year,” Eckardt said. “We’re really strong, with both the guys and girls.”
Junior Aaron Akin considers swimming to be his main sport, as he has participated in it for eight years. However, he has also been a member of the boys tennis team since his freshman year.
“Swimming combines both trying to do better than others with the opportunity to just improve yourself,” Akin said. “Tennis is mostly competition between either a team of two or just an individual.”
Although Akin enjoys the competitiveness of swimming, he joined the tennis team for a different reason.
“I just thought it looked fun,” Akin said. “I like how I have the opportunity to improve my game throughout practice.”
Throughout his high-school career, he feels he has enjoyed doubles matches the most.
“I like playing doubles because it allows me to use my height to smash incoming tennis balls into my opponent,” Akin said. “It’s just plain out fun seeing the reaction on their faces.”
As part of a team that includes many underclassmen, Akin feels like he will have to take on a leadership role next season.
“Having so many underclassmen builds the team for the future,” Akin said. “But I probably will [be a leader] because there will only be three seniors next year including me.”