It was a great meet for Seton Swimming on Saturday night at the Highland New Year’s Invitational at the beautiful Fitch WARF in Warrenton. This was the first major step toward winning the DAC Conference Championship for both the boys and the girls.
We’ll see Fredericksburg Academy on February 1st, and a victory over them in dual meet scoring will seal the deal. It would be the 26th year in a row for our girls and the 24th time for our boys since Seton Swimming began in 1995.
Thank you to Coach Ross Malinow, the long-time coach for Highland School, who was our meet host. With his daughter, Highland swimming star Morgan Malinow, in her Senior year, this is Coach Malinow’s last year coaching at Highland. He has had a big impact on DAC Swimming, so both he and his contribution to the sport will be greatly missed. Thank you Coach Malinow!
Both our Boys and Girls swam against six (6) different teams in a 3+ Dual Meet format. In the end, we won all twelve (12) meets. Here’s how the scores turned out for us yesterday:
Seton Swimming 167 Trinity Christian 109
Seton Swimming 185 Fauquier High School 91
Seton Swimming 192 Wakefield 61
Seton Swimming 192 Highland School 48
Seton Swimming 212 Fresta Valley Christian 40
Seton Swimming 215 Fredericksburg Christian 37
Seton Swimming 166 Fauquier High School 100
Seton Swimming 173 Trinity Christian 97
Seton Swimming 186 Wakefield 68
Seton Swimming 193 Fredericksburg Christian 39
Seton Swimming 202 Fresta Valley Christian 24
Seton Swimming 204 Highland School 16
Our biggest competition this season, as it has been over the past several seasons, was the strong Trinity Christian girls’ team. Congratulations to Trinity Christian School for a great performance. Their day is still yet to come this season, and I’m predicting it could be with Brooke and Annalise at the State Championship – again. We’ll plan to do all we can to make sure it is not at DAC Champs 😉
Looking back at the meet results, it was clear that Seton’s depth was just too much for Trinity Christian, even with the tremendous performances from their top two girls, Brooke Williams and Annalise Cornett. Teresa Klanderman, Jenna Phillips, Caroline Sykes and 8th grader Bella Yaraschak were also huge contributors to their scoring. To make the hurdle even higher for them, they were missing a couple of their scoring swimmers (and up-and-comer Elizabeth Klanderman is still in 7th grade 😉), but even with those girls, I don’t think the result would have been much different.
Our Captains over the past several seasons can justifiably be proud of their contribution to Saturday’s victory. Their job recruiting inside of Seton School, including 30 new swimmers this season, 32 last season, 26 the season before that, and 23 three season’s ago have resulted in a core of swimmers capable of scoring to overcome first place finishes from teams with faster swimmers. Thank you to Coach Dalrymple for her contribution to recruiting also! I can’t wait to see what this huge group of strong middle school swimmers do when they get older.
Impactful Swims for the Girls versus Trinity Christian School
You don’t win a meet like this without some impactful swimming from our Varsity team, particularly our Relays:
- 200 Medley Relay – It’s never happened before, but our Girls “B” Medley Relay of Teresa Bingham (SO), Clare Waldron (SO), Lily Byers (SO) and Kathleen O’Malley (SR) were able to beat the TCS “A” Relay to give us both 1st and 2nd All four splits were PR relay splits and the resulting time qualified the relay for States! Those Christmas practices really seemed to make a difference for all of these girls!
- Our “A” Medley Relay of Caroline Griffin (SR), Mairead Geiran (JR), Emily Flynn (SO) and Mary Pennefather (FR) was also great, taking first place overall by a wide margin. Emily and Mary has particularly strong splits. I have a Seahawks game on as I write. Thinking about Mary’s anchor leg against a strong Wakefield relay, I’m reminded of “Beast Mode”. 60 was a awesome swim for Mary!
- 200 Freestyle – This is an example of a relatively unpopular event where strong swimming wins meets. Anne Konstanty (SR) and Isabelle Luevano (SO) beat both of the top Trinity girls with Isabelle swimming a 3.45 second PR to out-score her seed.
- Mary O’Malley (SO) also had a huge 6.37 second PR to come withing .28 seconds of beating one of those top two TCS girls.
- Not to be left out, Theresa Dwane (SR) fought through her shoulder pain to push the third TCS swimmer down to 7th place when she took 6th by only .41 seconds.
- Great swims all the way around.
- 200 IM – Caroline Griffin (SR) took care of business in spite of an ankle injury, and Teresa Bingham followed her up with a PR swim to go 1st and 2nd in the event versus Trinity. Cat Linton (SO) scored in 4th versus Trinity and we missed 5th too because of sickness.
- 50 Free – Mary Pennefather (FR) took 2nd place overall with a dominate swim, and Kathleen O’Malley (SR) was just behind her to score 1st and 2nd versus Trinity. Maggie Gibbons (8) showed up with a .82 second PR to jump ahead of a top TCS freshman to out-score her seed, finishing in 4th versus Trinity. Katie Dealey (SR), fighting through shoulder problems for her senior year, also scored for Seton versus Trinity.
- 100 Fly – Mairead Geiran (JR) just spent 10-days in bed suffering from Influenza B, so her swim in 100 Fly against Trinity’s top swimmer, Brooke Williams, was particularly courageous. The swim that made the biggest difference however was Emily Flynn’s (SO) when she held off a 6.75 second PR by Trinity’s Teresa Klanderman to score just behind Mairead. Teresa Bingham (SO) and Lily Byers (SO) completed the scoring with strong swims that claimed 5th and 6th, respectively.
- 100 Free – Mary Pennefather (FR) was awesome, breaking the 1:00 barrier for the first time with her 2nd place 59.55. That time hit the State cut for 100 Free to the hundredth of a second, so Mary is an individual State qualifier now! When she got back to the team area, she was greeted by a very excited Coach Mulhern – “I kicked, I kicked!” she told him.
- Isabelle Luevano (SO) finished right behind Mary with a PR swim that came within .29 seconds from breaking the 1:00 barrier herself. Just a matter of time, I’m sure.
- Kathleen O’Malley (SR) came to play once again with a .72 second PR to score in 5th place versus Trinity and Theresa Dwane (SR) finished up our scoring in 6th.
- 500 Free – This was the time for Anne Konstanty (SR) to shine – and shine she did. In addition to Annalise Cornett, Trinity had two other strong swimmers in the water. One of those was junior Caroline Sykes who always seems to give Anne strong races over the past few years. Saturday was Anne’s night however, and she also beat the other Trinity girl, a strong new 8th grader that we will see for another four (4) years (I hope).
- Mary O’Malley (SO) dropped 19.46 seconds to far exceed her seed and score in 5th. The race between her and Trinity’s Elizabeth Klanderman (7) was fun to watch.
- Lily Byers (SO) and Cat Linton (SO) finished the scoring by taking 6th and 7th versus Trinity after strong swims.
- 200 Free Relay – In another relay surprise, our Girls “A” Relay of Mairead Geiran (JR), Anne Konstanty (SR), Isabelle Luevano (SO) and Mary Pennefather (FR) beat the best 200 Free Relay that Trinity is capable of putting in the water. Even with Annalise on the front end and Brooke on the backend, our girls were not going to be denied. Isabelle Luevano’s split, the best for her so far this season, was particularly impactful in the total relay also swimming their best time this season so far.
- Our 200 Free “B” Relay of Maggie Gibbons (8), Clare Waldron (SO), Mary O’Malley (SO) and Theresa Dwane (SR) also surprised me with a great swim that beat the TCS “B” Relay, thereby gaining the 3rd place relay points. In spite of the pain in her shoulder, Theresa somehow managed to swim a PR relay split!
- 1st and 3rd in the relay yielded a score for the event versus TCS of 13-5, a big boost for Seton.
- 100 Backstroke – An injured Caroline Griffin (SR) got the job done to claim the 1st place points versus Trinity, and Emily Flynn (SO) finished behind her to take 2nd versus Trinity. Ceili Koehr (SO) scored in 4th just behind Trinity’s fastest entry, and we lost the 5th place points due to sickness.
- 100 Breaststroke – Mairead Geiran (JR) overcame her lengthy illness to beat Trinity’s top Breaststroker comfortably. The fun came with the remaining entries for Seton.
- Clare Waldron (SO) was having the meet of her life, and it continued her with her .91 second PR that jumped her up to 3rd place versus Trinity.
- Then Sophia Zadnik (SO) and Maggie Gibbons (8) both had nice PR swims, by 1.49 seconds and .94 seconds, respectively, to claim the 5th and 6th place points versus Trinity.
- 400 Free Relay – At this point in the meet, the fact that Trinity had loaded up their 400 Free Relay was mute, although it is always fun for me to watch great swimmers swim. Our “A” and “B” Relay took the 2nd and 3rd place points to stay close in the event with an event score of 10-8.
- Our 400 Free “B” Relay of Teresa Bingham (SO), Mary O’Malley (SO), Kathleen O’Malley (SR), and Lily Byers (SO) were the ones to shine with a great swim that got them the State cut and complete the work of getting all six (6) girls “A” and “B” Relays qualified for States.
Was I the only one to notice how many Sophomore girls seemed to have a big impact on this meet?
Impactful Swims for the Boys Too!
I know, I know. I’m always talking about the girls. But that’s because I’ve been more worried about the girls. The way our boys have been swimming this season, I’m not the least bit worried about them!
Here are some of the great swims that I saw from the Boys on Saturday:
- Our Boys 200 Medley “A” Relay of Shane Koehr (SR), Jacob Alsup (SR), Jerry Dalrymple (JR) and Drew Dalrymple (SR) had their best swim of the season, beating their previous best time by more than a second and taking first place overall. Everyone on the relay swam well, particularly our anchor, Drew Dalrymple, who split a lifetime best 23.81!
- Our Boys 200 Medley Relay will be the team to beat at DAC Champs.
- Joey Arnold (SR) had a great split anchoring our “B” Medley Relay. How about a 25.39!
- And Justin Fioramonti (SR) rocked his Butterfly leg with a lifetime best split of 30.79, almost 2 full seconds faster than his previous best!
- Nathan Luevano (FR) and Jacob Alsup (SR) had a great head-to-head race in the 200 IM with Nathan finally prevailing in a very close finish. Both swimmers had PRs by 4.44 seconds and 2.78 seconds, respectively. They were the fastest two DAC finishers in the meet on Saturday.
- Christian Ceol (SR) was a beast in 50 Free jumping from the 6th seed to 3rd place overall with a .88 second PR 24.48! Wow!
- Joe Wilson (FR) made a run at the State cut in 100 Fly after a 4.17 second PR 1:02.70. That was good enough for 2nd place overall behind Wakefield’s top senior swimmer. That means that it could be possible for Joe to earn All-Conference honors at DAC Champs in February. Let’s break a minute Joe!
- Shane Koehr (SR) established himself as the top 100 Freestyler on the team right now after a .85 second PR that got him down to 54.76. That swim too 1st place overall in the meet by 2.01 seconds. Shane was All-Conference last year in 100 Back. Can he do it in 100 Free too?
- The Boys 500 Free was a great race to watch. Seton swimmers Nathan Luevano (FR), Christian Ceol (SR), Evan Wilson (JR) and Mick Fioramonti (8) finished 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th, respectively, behind two of the top swimmers in any event in the DAC. Nathan was particularly strong, beating his previous PR by 7.72 seconds!
- We qualified a Boys 200 Free “B” Relay on Saturday. We now have a total of 9 swimmers who have swum on a 200 Free Relay when it hit the cut. Lots of fast splits have these 9 boys between 23.81 and 25.42 with four of them between 24.31 and 24.60. Once again Joey Arnold (SR) was the biggest surprise with his 25.17 split!
- I don’t know how impactful Dominic Olszewski’s 50 Free leading off an exhibition relay was, but it sure was fun to watch. Many of you know Dominic as one of the stars of Seton’s Varsity Basketball team, but how many of us knew he could jump in with no training and swim a 50 Free in 26.67? I wish he could have swum for us during his time at Seton. You coulda been a contenda Dominic!
- Shane Koehr (SR) finally got the State cut in 100 Backstroke with his 1:02.81 to take 2nd place overall.
- Jacob Alsup (SR) took first place overall in 100 Breaststroke after a .03 second PR with a sore knew. Can he be All-Conference?
- Our Boys 400 Free Relay qualified another four (4) swimmers for States so we can now enter both an “A” and a “B” relay. Congratulations to Joe Wilson, Christian Ceol, Evan Wilson and Nathan Luevano.
- But watch out for Liam Kellogg Jeremy Kleb, John McGrath, Joey Arnold and Justin Fioramonti!
We are loaded with talent on the boys side this year. I’m really enjoying the healthy competition between all of them for relay slots. It’s a great example of Meekness where they are all making each other better. Great work men!
The Unbelievable Personal Records Just Keep Coming
It doesn’t surprise me that we keep seeing so many PRs, even after Christmas break, but the magnitude of some of them at this point in the season really is amazing:
- Shannon O’Malley (7) was a shining star among the middle schoolers on Saturday. I was so excited to see her drop nearly half a minute (26.45 seconds to be exact) in 200 Free. Her resulting time was excellent for a 7th Shannon also dropped another 1.00 second in 100 Breaststroke.
- Mary Clare Waldron (SO) has been mentioned a few times before for her impact on the final result of the meet, but an amazing swim that I haven’t mentioned yet is her 8.73 second PR in 100 Free! It’s amazing what happens when you kick straight, eh Clare?
- Lucy Cunningham (7) showed some amazing improvement this past weekend. In the 500 Free, she cut 70.27 seconds! And believe it or not, I know she can go faster than her already fast 7:37.73. The same is true with her amazing 21.77 second PR in 200 Free. Flip turns Lucy!
- JJ Brox (FR) had a tremendous swim in 200 Free, beating his previous best time by a whopping 28.28 seconds! He also had a massive 7.68 second PR in 100 Back and a .78 second PR in 50 Free leading off a relay. Now that was a very good night for JJ!
- Peter Konstanty (8) was stellar in the 200 Free, beating his previous PR by 16.81 seconds.
- Joey Arnold (SR) has been mentioned a few times so far, but how about his 8.04 second PR in 100 Breaststroke?
- Elodie Brox (7) continues to get faster. Her 9.23 second PR was a huge win for her on Saturday.
- Jo Hartung (8) is figuring out Breaststroke, and it showed in her massive 40.05 second PR.
- Michael McGrath (8) had a huge 11.58 second drop in 100 Back, a 3.48 second drop in 50 Back leading off a medley, and a 2.37 second drop in 50 Free. That was an outstanding night’s work for Michael!
- Max Wilson (7) didn’t hit any PRs, but that’s only because I didn’t have a previous time on him for the 200 IM and 500 Free. The times I saw for him after his first attempts at the events were very, very good for a swimmer his age. 2:49 in the 200 IM and 6:56 in the 500 Free are both outstanding!
68 Total Personal Records on Saturday
There were loads of other Personal Records on Saturday also. I always say that “if we swim Personal Records, the winning takes care of itself”. That continues to be another of the keys to Seton’s success in the water:
- Chris Arnold (7) had a big drop in 100 Breast, beating his previous PR by 1.49 seconds.
- Julia Atkinson (8) looked long and fast during her 50 Free, and it showed with her .84 second PR.
- Teresa Bingham (SO) has been mentioned a few times already for her impact on Saturday’s victory, but I have yet mentioned her .32 second PR in 50 Back leading off a medley relay and her .11 second PR in 200 IM.
- Emma Catabui (SO) took another .35 seconds off of her PR in 50 Free
- Jack Champney (8) showed some great improvement in 100 Back, beating his previous best by 5.43 seconds. Jack also cut 1.99 seconds from his 50 Free PR.
- Lauren Curley (SR) seems to get better every time she hits the water. This time, she dropped 11.44 seconds in 100 Free and 2.10 seconds in 50 Free.
- Joey Dealey (FR) cut 2.74 seconds from his 100 Back PR.
- Elizabeth Dwane (SO) had a big .84 second drop in 50 Free and another .11 second drop in 100 Back.
- Justin Fioramonti (SR) had a great swim in the 200 IM, cutting 2.49 seconds from his PR.
- Mick Fioramonti (8) had a nice drop in 200 Free, lowering his PR by 3.09 seconds. He also cut 2.00 seconds from his 50 Back PR leading off a medley relay.
- Clare Flynn (8) continues to improve. On Saturday, she lowered her 50 Free PR by 1.16 seconds and her 100 Free PR by .96 seconds.
- Amelia Geary (8) had a nice swim in 100 Back, cutting 2.51 seconds from her previous best.
- Maggie Gibbons (8) has already been mentioned for the impact she had on Saturday’s score, but I didn’t want to miss the chance to point out her .94 second PR in 100 Breast and her .82 second PR in 50 Free.
- Patrick Hartung (FR) figured out how to take better advantage of his length with his 3.36 second PR in 100 Back. He also cut .07 seconds in 50 Back leading off a medley relay.
- Liam Kellogg (JR) has been sick, but it didn’t seem to impact his 50 Free lead-off on a 200 Free Relay. How about a flat start 24.81? Not only was that a .21 second PR, it is now the 4th fastest flat start 50 Free on the team so far this year.
- Ceili Koehr (SO) found that elusive Personal Record in 100 Free, by .02 seconds.
- Chris Lynch (8) had a great medley relay lead-off, cutting 10.32 seconds from his 50 Back PR.
- John McGrath (JR) had a great swim in 100 Breaststroke, lowering his PR by 6.53 seconds. Had he stayed on his back during the backstroke leg, he would have also had a pretty good time in 200 IM.
- Elena Morano (SR) cut another 1.18 seconds from her 50 Free PR. She also had a great swim in her first attempt in 100 Backstroke.
- Lucy Pennefather (7) looked really fast in her freestyle Saturday, and it showed with her .21 second PR in 50 Free and her .09 second PR in 100 Free.
- Cate Waldron (SO) had a nice drop in 100 Back, by 2.03 seconds, and in 50 Free, by .66 seconds.
- Rose Waldron (7) used her smooth underwaters to drop another 1.25 seconds in 50 Free. I can’t wait to see what she can do underwater as she grows taller!
- Madelyn Zadnik (8) had a great swim in 100 Free, beating her previous best by 4.76 seconds.
- Sophia Zadnik (SO) had her best meet of the season with three nice PRs. How about a 4.81 second PR in 100 Free, a 2.32 second PR in 50 Back leading off a medley relay, and a 1.49 second PR in 100 Breast?
State and National Catholic Qualification
I don’t recall a season since I’ve been coaching where the number of swimmers who have a shot at swimming on a State Relay was so high. As a result, I’m tracking it more closely than ever.
Because it has gotten so complex, I’ve started a separate blog each week dedicated to State and National Catholic qualifications alone. Google Analytics tells me that my new blog is already very popular 😉
Cystic Fibrosis Swim-a-Thon
If you look at the link in the Announcements section of the Home Page, you can see the results from the New Year’s Eve Cystic Fibrosis Swim-a-thon. I’m very pleased to see we are up to $6,638, the 2nd highest total in our many years holding this event.
We’re keeping the fundraising page open until January 15th so we still have time to hit our $10,000 goal. To accomplish that, it would require each Team Captain to raise an average of $1,250. Congratulations to Team Shane, who’s $2,083 total is the highest among our team captains.
One Opportunity to Improve
It was a great night for our team on Saturday, so it left me a little disappointed to see so many people outside the team area at the start of the 400 Free Relay.
Imagine you are swimming in the last event of the meet and all of your friends are up in the stands with their backpacks on talking to their parents and friends? We’re a team. Let’s cheer each other to the very end.
We have two meets left in the regular season followed by our annual Junior Varsity Invitational meet at the WARF on January 25th. That will be the last meet of the season for all non-Varsity swimmers. After that, there will be no more exhibition swimming since we will be entering the Championship season.
Let’s get the most out of the last three (3) weeks of practice!
See you at practice,
Coach Jim Koehr