MHS' swimming streak finally ended

By Steve Sell
January 21, 2018
Lori VanGoethem

WICHITA — You would think that McPherson High boys swimming coach Matt Morrow would have been disappointed that his team’s unbeaten streak came to an end on Saturday in the Wichita Heights Invitational.

But Morrow was happier with the performance than almost any other this year.

“It took the biggest 6A school in Kansas to stop the boys from another first place, but placing second at this meet was outstanding and they swam great,” Morrow said. “I'm more proud of this second-place finish than any of the wins we had this season just because the level of competition was so high and of how we competed. Wichita East won the meet over us by 36 points, 33 of those came on Friday night when they held the diving competition. Not having a diver or two at meets like this and at state really puts us a disadvantage, but we work with what we have.”

Wichita East scored 330 1/2 points, while MHS scored 294, finishing comfortably ahead of defending state champion Wichita Heights, which tallied 247. Maize, expected to be a top state contender, scored 211 for fourth and there were 21 teams in all.

“Every one of these guys just loves to race and it really showed today,” Morrow said. “We've got a competitive fire that really gets going when the competition is at its highest, so I'm excited to see how they fare next Saturday when we travel to Emporia. This is another new meet for us this year and one of the teams scheduled to come is Topeka Seaman, which has a great team.  Last year they finished in the Top 5 at State and are looking for a higher finish.”

Morrow said his team did experience some hurt by losing for the first time in seven meets, but that was fine by him.

“One thing that really stuck out for me after this meet was the boys were disappointed at not winning,” Morrow said. “Where they have come from two years ago, being so excited at winning their first meet to now having the confidence to believe they should win every time they dive into the pool, that makes me proud to coach these athletes and I hope McPherson is proud of them, too.”

MHS has now qualified all three of its relay for state and 10 swimmers individually as it’s poised for its best finish in school history.

The Bullpups’ 200 medley relay of Will Powers, Jori VanGoethem, Justus Hampton and Dawson VanGoethem started the meet with a second-place finish and the excellence continued from there.

• MHS Results •

200 medley relay — 2. MHS (W. Powers, J. VanGoethem, Hampton and D. VanGoethem), 1:43.29. 

200 freestyle — 5. Soukup, 1:57.92. 11. R. Reiman, 2:02.66. 23. Walker, 2:10.77.

200 individual medley — 4. W. Powers, 2:06.89. 10. Silas Steinert, 2:17.25. 16. Vanderhoof, 2:24.25.

50 freestyle — 3. D. VanGoethem, 22.87. 13. Stone, 24.01. 15. J. VanGoethem, 24.44.

100 butterfly — 4. Hampton, 55.63. 9. Soukup, 59.36. 10. LeBlanc, 59.98.

100 freestyle — 4. D. VanGoethem, 51.58. 9. Stone, 52.98. 

500 freestyle — 3. Hampton, 5:05.56. 7. M. Powers, 5:26.67. 10. R. Reiman, 5:35.93.

200 freestyle relay — 7. MHS (J. VanGoethem, Silas Steinert, Soukup and Stone), 1:37.51.

100 backstroke — 4. W. Powers, 56.55. 8. Silas Steinert, 1:01.42. 16. Simon Steinert, 1:04.13.

100 breaststroke — 5. J. VanGoethem, 1:09.16. 10. M. Powers, 1:12.46. 20. Walker, 1:15.5.

400 freestyle relay — 2. MHS (D. VanGoethem, Soukup, Hampton and W. Powers), 3:25.22.


1. Wichita East, 330 1/2

2. McPherson, 294

3. Wichita Heights, 247

4. Maize, 211

5. Hutchinson, 174

6. Maize South, 149

7. Wichita Trinity, 128

8. Great Bend, 111

9. Wichita Northwest, 105 1/2

10. Wichita West, 97

10. Wichita North, 97

12. Wichita Independent, 79

12. Newton, 79

12. Winfield, 79

15. Wichita Collegiate, 46

16. Kapaun, 26

17. Wichita South, 21

18. Rose Hill, 16

19. El Dorado, 14

20. Garden City, 9

21. Wichita Heights JV, 2