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Examiner
  • Bronco takes like a fish to water

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    • 2013 Examiner All-Area Boys Swimming & Diving

      FIRST TEAM • 200-yard medley relay: Lee’s Summit North (Thomas Faulkenberry, jr.; Brady Benefiel, soph.; Zach Littell, jr.; Thomas ...

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      2013 Examiner All-Area Boys Swimming & Diving

      FIRST TEAM • 200-yard medley relay: Lee’s Summit North (Thomas Faulkenberry, jr.; Brady Benefiel, soph.; Zach Littell, jr.; Thomas Reilly, soph.) — 17th at state (1:42.36); Suburban Big Six champion (1:40.02). • 200-yard freestyle: Michael Hynes, jr., Lee’s Summit North — Fifth at state (1:43.58); Suburban Big Six champion (1:44.99). • 200-yard individual medley: Ethan Bresette, sr., Lee’s Summit North — State champion (1:51.17); Suburban Big Six champion (1:53.37). • 50-yard freestyle: Connor Gregston, sr., Blue Springs South — Third at state (21.41); third at Suburban Big Six Championships (21.86). • One-meter diving: James Poole, sr., Blue Springs South — Sixth at state (346.25); Suburban Big Six champion (416.25). • 100-yard butterfly: Zach Littell, jr., Lee’s Summit North — 13th at state (54.02); Suburban Big Six champion (52.26). • 100-yard freestyle: Connor Gregston, sr., Blue Springs South — Second at state (46.61): Suburban Big Six champion (47.59). • 500-yard freestyle: Ethan Bresette, sr., Lee’s Summit North — Second at state (4:36.49); Suburban Big Six champion (4:40.93). • 200-yard freestyle relay: Lee’s Summit North (Michael Hynes, jr.; Zach Littell, jr.; James White, sr.; Ethan Bresette, sr.) — Second at state (1:26.71); Suburban Big Six champion (1:26.80). • 100-yard backstroke: Thomas Faulkenberry, jr., Lee’s Summit North — 16th at state (55.13); Suburban Big Six champion (55.65). • 100-yard breaststroke: Jacob Raines, soph., Blue Springs — Eighth at state (1:00.47); Suburban Big Six champion (1:00.53). • 400-yard freestyle relay: Lee’s Summit North (Michael Hynes, jr.; Thomas Reilly, soph.; James White, sr.; Ethan Bresette, sr.) — State champion (3:09.91); Suburban Big Six champion (3:11.92).

      SECOND TEAM • 200-yard medley relay: Blue Springs (Drew Coleman, sr.; Jacob Raines, soph.; Reagan Jett, sr.; Quinn Aylward, jr.). • 200 freestyle: Michael Melichar, jr., Blue Springs • 200 IM: Jack Pluenneke, sr., Blue Springs South • 50 freestyle: Connor Dillon, sr., Blue Springs South • One-meter diving: Eric Horn, sr., Blue Springs South • 100 butterfly: Josh Littell, soph., Lee’s Summit North • 100 freestyle: Michael Hynes, jr., Lee’s Summit North • 500 freestyle: Jack Pluenneke, sr., Blue Springs South • 200 freestyle relay: Blue Springs South (Dominic Baber, jr.; Jack Pluenneke, sr.; Connor Dillon, sr.; Connor Gregston, sr.) • 100 backstroke: Thomas Reilly, soph., Lee’s Summit North • 100 breaststroke: Michael Hynes, jr., Lee’s Summit North • 400 freestyle relay: Blue Springs South (Dominic Baber, jr.; Jack Pluenneke, sr.; Connor Dillon, sr.; Connor Gregston, sr.)

      HONORABLE MENTION: Blue Springs: Quinn Aylward, jr., 100 butterfly; Ben Duvall, jr., 200 freestyle and 500 freestyle; Reagan Jett, sr., 100 butterfly; Michael Melichar, jr., 100 freestyle; Jacob Raines, soph., 200 IM; 200 freestyle relay and 400 freestyle relay (Michael Melichar, jr.; Drew Coleman, sr.; Quinn Aylward, jr.; Ben Duvall, jr.). Blue Springs South: Dominic Baber, jr., 50 freestyle; Chris Branch, sr., 500 freestyle; Connor Dillon, sr., 100 freestyle; Garrett Edwards, jr., 100 backstroke; 200 medley relay (Ben Morgan, fresh.; Garrett Edwards, jr.; Jake Workman, fresh.; Stephen Ivey, sr.). Lee’s Summit North: Brady Benefiel, soph., 100 backstroke; Thomas Faulkenberry, jr., 200 freestyle; Josh Littell, soph., 200 IM; Zach Littell, jr., 50 freestyle; Thomas Reilly, soph., 500 freestyle; James White, sr., 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle. Truman: Vincent Glorioso, sr., 50 freestyle; Jack Knipp, soph., 100 backstroke; Derrick Linhardt, soph., 100 butterfly.

  • Football still is one of Ethan Bresette’s favorite sports.
    But his ability to slice quickly through the water, and the innate desire to constantly get faster at it, made giving up that sport easier to stomach for the Lee’s Summit North senior.
    Bresette, who led the Broncos to a third-place finish at the 2013 MSHSAA Boys Swimming and Diving State Championships by winning one event, taking second in another and anchoring first- and second-place relays, is The Examiner’s Boys Swimmer of the Year. He plans to continue his swimming career at Missouri State in Springfield.
    Football and boys swimming being fall sports in Missouri, Bresette had to relinquish one of them, but he said it wasn’t until his sophomore or junior season that he realized how far he could go in swimming.
    “For a long time, like any kid, I was in multiple sports,” Bresette said. “After I decided it was swimming, I put more time into it and progressed.
    “I’ve never had a favorite stroke. My best stroke right now is butterfly, but I’m fairly good at the rest of them, so IM was a good event for me.”
    Good enough to win the 200-yard individual medley state title in November (1 minute, 51.17 seconds) after winning at the Suburban Big Six meet in 1:53.37. In previous trips to state Bresette took second (1:52.88) and 10th (1:56.71) in that event. He also claimed second at state in the 500 freestyle (4:36.49), shaving more than four seconds off his winning Big Six time.
    Bresette anchored the 400 freestyle relay that won state in 3:09.91 after that relay had taken seventh and 10th the last two years at state. In the 200 free relay, the Broncos were runner-up in 1:26.71 after taking seventh each of their past two state appearances.
    Both relays also won at the Big Six meet, as the Broncos captured the team championship. Michael Hynes, Thomas Reilly and James White joined Bresette in the 400 relay, while Hynes, Zach Littell and James White preceded him in the 200.
    Bresette also swam the 100 butterfly at state the previous two seasons, placing eighth as a sophomore and fifth as a junior.
    However, the best, Lee’s Summit North coach Danielle Russell believes, is yet to come.
    “Where he is right now, it’s fantastic, and he’s only going to get better,” Russell said. “He’s tapped in and motivated, because he knows he hasn’t reached his full potential.
    “As far as high school, I don’t think I could’ve asked for more. Every year he exceeded expectations. As a coach he’s a blast to have. He’s so quick to pick up technique and quick to acknowledge when something needs to be fine-tuned. It’s not all talent with him. He’s a naturally gifted athlete, but he was a football player. To transfer football ability to swimming ability, that's not easy.”
    Page 2 of 2 - As much as points accumulated from high finishes, what Russell said will be hard to replace with Bresette is his overall drive and attitude.
    “He’s also a good teammate,” she said. “You don’t find leaders like Ethan every day.”
    Bresette and the Broncos earned plenty of honors in the high school pools, but he also enjoyed the time spent building to that success – which is what he said he'll miss the most.
    “(I’ll miss) being able to collaborate with people who may not take the sport as seriously but want to contribute,” Bresette said. “I wanted to enjoy the sport while it’s fun before going off to college, where it’s more serious.
    “It was always as fun as I imagined it would be. I got to develop leadership skills from it, and I developed friendships.”
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