This weekend is the state swimming tournament in Topeka. The Lansing Lions and Basehor-Linwood Bobcats spent the season swimming together in a co-op agreement as swimming continues to grow for Basehor-Linwood. This year, the team will send 13 total swimmers to Topeka, five from Basehor-Linwood and eight from Lansing.
Evan Dusselier, Kade Imhoff, Luka Misevic, Tucker Dixon and Brady Tinder will represent the Bobcats at the meet. Dusselier, Imhoff, Misevic and Dixon will all swim in the 200 medley relay and 400 medley relay. Misevic and Dixon will also swim with Tinder in the 200 freestyle relay. Dusselier qualified in the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke. Imhoff will also swim in the 100 back.
Lansing’s qualifiers were Max Walck, Zach Crumpacker, Robert Schafer, Jake Hamilton, Greyson Walker, Collin Kenaga, Brock Martin and Daylan Williams. Walck will swim in the 200 individual medley, 100 breaststroke and two relays. Crumpacker will swim in two relays, the 200 and 500 free. Schafer will do the 100 back and all three relays. Hamilton is in the 200 free and all three relays, Walker is in the 50 and 100 free and two relays. Kenaga is in the 200 free relay. Martin is in the 500 free and a relay and Williams is in a relay.
Practices have had more individualized focus with the state meet approaching where guys are working on various things in practice instead of a lot of group efforts.
Assistant coach David Bresser said the practices have gone well.
“I think overall (preparation) has been really good,” Bresser said. “I think we are focused on what we need to focus on.”
Bresser brought up how the only disappointing thing has been the weather causing school and practices to be canceled and not being able to get into the water, but he said the intensity has been good this week.
Evan Dusselier from Basehor-Linwood said swimming with Lansing has been good.
“This season with Lansing has been really good,” Dusselier said. “It’s really nice to be able to co-op with them and share new friendships. Coach (David) Bresser and coach (Josh) Floetke have been very welcoming to the Basehor guys and it’s been a really good experience.”
Lansing’s Robert Schafer said it also helped push the Lions this year.
“Having Basehor really pushed our team,” Schafer said. “I had Kade (Imhoff) and having him push me in backstroke really helped my time drop and I think it was the same with him.”
“I think it’s just pretty fun to have more guys on the team,” Greyson Walker said.
Although they swam together for much of the season, the conference tournament had the Bobcats swimmers compete separately.
The state tournament will have the two schools swimming separately again, but some swimmers said they will still cheer for each other.
“I guess it was still different,” Schafer said. “But it was about being good teammates. Even though they were a different team, it is still one family.”
Walker said he sometimes forgets that they’re technically on a different team.
“It is weird,” Dusselier said. “But at the same time, it is not. They’ve been our teammates the whole season and they’ve cheered us on and we’ve cheered them on. We race each other at practice so it really isn’t any different than any day at practice. We just try to get the best out of each other.
Basehor-Linwood’s Kade Imhoff said it has been a cool experience with the Lions being teammates and competition.
“I think it’s really cool,” Imhoff said. “I think it’s a really cool aspect because you spend the season and become really good friends with all your teammates. You don’t really feel like we are Basehor and they are Lansing. We feel like one team and it’s really cool when you go and compete against each other.”
When asked what they are most excited for with the tournament, Dusselier said he is excited to race his teammates.
He also said he hopes to improve his times from last year’s state meet. Imhoff is excited for the first relay teams for the Bobcats to compete in the meet.
Walker said he is looking forward to facing the best of the best.
Schafer said it is how close all the relays teams are.
Bresser said being responsible for two teams is his choice.
“I think the thing that I am excited about is having the responsibility of two teams,” Bresser said. “I’m excited that we have all these guys from Basehor joining us this year. It’s been a lot of fun. But I’m going down there to watch relays with two teams in the events. No one else can really say that.”