Redfield's Replays: January 31


Michael Zhou

Blue Valley North’s three senior swimming captains aren’t just good swimmers, they're also good students.

The three have an average ACT score of 35 (36 is a perfect score) between them.

In alphabetical order, the students are Cole Bakalar, Andrew Rohleder and Michael Zhou.

Bakalar placed fifth in the 100-yard butterfly and sixth in the 100-yard breaststroke at the 2013 Class 6A state meet.

He had an ACT score of 34.

“Balancing sports and academics is no easy task,” he says. “Dedicating 24 hours a week to your sport while also receiving good grades in four AP (advanced placement) classes is easier said than done.

“It takes a lot of self-control to spend my rare spare time out outside of swimming, doing homework, and also maintaining a healthy social life.”

Andrew Rohleder

Bakalar will not continue swimming in college.

“I plan on either attending Alabama or Arkansas next year,” he says. “They have given me very respectable academic scholarship offers, so I do not plan on continuing my swimming career.”

Rohleder had a 35 ACT score and is a sprint freestyler for the swimming team.

“Swimming is the hardest and most demanding high school sport, and with the 27 hours a week we spend in the pool, it has been a constant learning process in order to find a balance between the time spent on my academics.

“Fortunately, I’m surrounded by a supportive group of teammates, and we all help each other when in need, and overcome the difficulties together.”

The senior is not planning on continuing his swimming career in college.

“I hope to be able to attend Auburn University and pursue a major in chemical engineering,” he says.

Zhou had a perfect score of 36 on the ACT.

He placed fourth in the 100-yard freestyle and 10th in the 50-yard freestyle at the 2013 Class 6A state meet. He was a member of the fifth-place 200 freestyle relay and sixth-place 400 freestyle relay teams.

How difficult is it balancing swimming and academics?

“It really depends on the course load of the athlete in question,” he says. “I take academically rigorous classes, thus it’s somewhat difficult to balance both, although I manage.”

Zhou doesn’t plan to continue swimming and has not decided on a college yet.

“I plan to major in biomedical engineering,” he says.

All three, along with the rest of the BV North team, will be hosting the East Kansas League meet Feb. 6-7.



Blue Valley Northwest beat Wichita Southeast 75-56 in the championship game of the Valley Center boys basketball tournament on Saturday.

This is the fourth consecutive year that the Huskies have won this tournament.

Seniors Ben Richardson and Clay Custer were named to the all-tournament team. Senior David Salach won the dunk contest.



The Kansas All-American boys and girls nominees for the April 3 game in Chicago have been announced.

And the entire starting lineup from defending 6A state champion Blue Valley Northwest boys basketball team have been nominated. They are seniors Clay Custer, Vince Fritz, Kyle Harrison, Ben Richardson and David Salach.

Two area girls’ players made the nomination list.

They are Olathe Northwest’s Shea Shipman and Tia Weledji of St. Thomas Aquinas.