Earlier last week, I announced the Varsity team that will compete in the post-season for Seton where no more exhibition swimming is allowed. Eleven years ago, after having the season for nearly half the team end abruptly at this point, we hatched the idea of a fun, season-ending meet for all of the members of Seton’s Junior Varsity team.
The Junior Varsity Invitational was the result of that plan. We had just started hosting the State Championship meet at that point – how hard could this one be? So we set out on a journey to create an annual event at the beautiful Fitch Warrenton Aquatic and Recreation Facility, which was brand new at the time.
The meet continues to grow. Saturday’s meet was the large JV Invitational yet. We had 225 swimmers from 18 teams that traveled from as far away as Chesapeake, VA for a fun-filled meet where I do all of the announcing personally. Fortunately, there was no overlapping National Catholic meet this year so I didn’t have to do the trip back to Warrenton during the middle of that meet.
The meet got off to a great start when Seton Managers Katie Moore and Marcie Van de Voorde sang the National Anthem in beautiful harmony. They were wonderful!
The scoring for the top teams at the meet ended up very positive for Seton. Our boys won and our girls were a mere 6 points behind Division I powerhouse Norfolk Academy. A closer look at the results shows that one of the many events that made the difference was a disqualification of our Girls “A” 200 Back relay.:
St. Anne’s Belfied 199
Norfolk Academy 181
Fredericksburg Christian 168.5
North Cross 83.5
St. Michael the Archangel 62
Randolph-Macon Academy 53
Peabody School 38
The Carmel School 36
Faith Christian School 31
Norfolk Academy 248
Williamsburg Christian 154
St. Anne’s Belfield 143
North Cross 87
Fredericksburg Christian 66
Blessed Sacrament Huguenot 41
I was very excited for the future of Seton Swimming while I watched so many young swimmers swim so well. The future of Seton Swimming sure does look bright!
Top Scorers for Seton
Saturday’s meet was very fast – we had 7 new meet records, but our strong core of young swimmers were up to the challenge. Here are the swimmers who scored in the top 8 on Saturday:
- Mairead Geiran (8) was Seton’s top scorer by taking a gold, a silver and a bronze in her individual events. She also took silver leading off the 200 Free relay and bronze in the 200 Medley. The highlight of Mairead’s afternoon was the 50 Fly where she had a tremendous race with Norfolk Academy’s top swimmer, Olivia Galiotos – Mairead outtouched her for Gold by .10 seconds after cutting 1.20 seconds from her 50 Fly PR. Mairead’s silver came in 50 Breast and her Bronze came in 100 IM where her 1:06.68 was a 2.16 second PR.
- The Dalymple Brothers were the top scorers for the Seton boys. They teamed up with David Flook, Jack Santschi and Liam Kellogg in various combinations to take silver in the 200 Free Relay and 4th in the 200 Medley Relay. Individually:
- Drew Dalrymple (FR) rocked a very fast 50 Free heat to take a silver medal with a .01 second PR 24.77. It took a meet record to beat Drew, who was just off the meet record himself. Drew also took 7th in 100 Free and 8th in 50 Back. His 50 Back was a 3.81 second PR.
- Jerry Dalrymple (8) has a very fast .90 PR 28.90 in 50 Fly to take 5th. Jerry also took 6th in 100 Free with a 57.73 and 11th in the 100 IM with a very fast 1:07.32
- Caroline Griffin (FR) had a some outstanding swims on Saturday. After taking 4th in 50 Back, she cut .94 seconds in 100 Free to go 1:04.51 and take 7th She also scored in 9th place in 100 IM after a huge 3.81 second PR. Caroline also took bronze in the 200 Medley Relay.
- David Flook (FR) swam PRs in all three of his individual events, which is quite an accomplishment considering that he is taking a hiatus from USA swimming this year. In 50 Back, his .17 second PR took 6th place, in 50 Fly, his .12 second PR took 7th place, and in 100 IM, his .76 second PR took 9th with a very fast 1:05.75. David also took silver in the 200 Free Relay and 4th in the 200 Medley Relay.
- Theresa McGrath (7) showed great power in the water, scoring in all three of her individual events. In 50 Breast, she took 5th place, in 50 Fly, she swam a 3.03 second PR to take 7th place and in 100 IM, she took 8th. Theresa missed large chunks of the season with illness this year, and she still made great progress. I can’t wait to get her back in the water next year. Theresa was also part of the bronze in the 200 Medley Relay and the silver in the 200 Free Relay.
- Jack Santschi (8) is so big and strong that I most often forget that he is only in 8th grade – and I could never tell he was that young by watching him swim! On Saturday, Jack cut another .02 seconds in 50 Free to score in 5th He also scored in 8th place in 100 Free and in 10th place in 50 Fly. His Fly time was a 1.66 second flat start PR. Jack was also a part of the gold medal 200 Backstroke Relay and the silver medal 200 Free Relay.
- Katharine Rowzie (FR) has had a breakout season this year, so it was fun to watch her compete with kids her own age for a change. She made the most of it in 100 Free especially where she dropped 1.43 seconds to go 1:04.19 and score in 6th Katharine also took 10th in 50 Back and 15th in 100 IM. Katharine was also a part of the silver medal 200 Free Relay.
- Emily Flynn (7) used her greatly improved underwaters to propel herself to a .79 second PR in 50 Fly, good enough to score in 7th Emily also scored in 9th place for 100 Free and 11th place for 100 IM.
- Isabelle Luevano (7) was very impressive on Saturday. Her technically outstanding freestyle propelled her to 7th place in the 50. Her beautiful strokes also helped her score in 10th place for the 100 IM and 12th place in the 50 Back. Isabelle was also a part of the bronze medal 200 Medley Relay and the silver medal 200 Free Relay
- Elizabeth Caron (8) had a great swim in 50 Back where she scored in 8th Elizabeth also took 19th in both the 50 Fly and 100 IM with times right on her Personal Records.
48 New Personal Records for only 32 Swimmers!
In a meet where many swimmers were swimming events for the very first time at a high school meet (therefore no PR is possible), it was great to see that we have a total of 48 Personal Records for the meet. It’s even more amazing when you consider that we only had 32 swimmers in the water – that’s an incredible 1.5 PRs per swimmer! Here are the PRs that I haven’t already mentioned:
- Meghan Curley (SR) made me so proud. She had never swum competitively before this season, and the amount of improvement I’ve seen from her has been phenomenal – and it continued on Saturday. How about a 5.70 second PR in 100 Free and a 5.13 second PR in 50 Free!
- Lauren Volk (FR) was just incredible on Saturday. I watched her swim freestyle from the announcer’s table, and I just marveled at her level of improvement this year. Even though it was her first year, she looked like a veteran. In 50 Free, she somehow cut another 1.63 seconds and in 100 Free, she somehow cut another 1.31 seconds. On Saturday, her 100 Free time was 1:15.90. Compare that with her time at Time Trials – 2:17.00. Wow!
- Anne Konstanty (FR) definitely had a breakout season this year, and it continued on Saturday. Anne somehow cut 5.79 seconds in 50 Breaststroke, 2.89 seconds in 100 Free and .53 seconds in 50 Free. Anne was also a part of the silver medal 200 Backstroke Relay.
- Maria Tozzi (8) has really swum well this season, and I continued to be impressed with her swimming on Saturday afternoon. In 50 Breaststroke leading off a relay, she cut 2.69 seconds from her PR. She also had a .46 second PR in 50 Back and a .71 second PR in 100 IM.
- Shane Koehr (FR) showed that he is going to be a big part of the future of our team with his 3.70 second PR in 100 IM and 3.20 second PR in 50 Breast leading off the gold medal 200 Breaststroke Relay. Shane was also the lead-off for the gold medal 200 Backstroke Relay.
- Liam Kellogg (8) showed me how good he can be next season with some great swimming on Saturday. He cut 1.19 seconds in 100 Free to 1:07.42 and he cut .86 seconds in 50 Free to break the :30 second barrier for the first time. Leam was also a part of the gold medal 200 Breaststroke Relay and the 4th place 200 Medley Relay.That was a great way to close out your season Liam!
- Jeremy Kleb (FR) rocked his 50 Fly and 50 Free on Saturday. In Fly, he cut .88 seconds and in Free, he cut .07 seconds to go 27.99.
- Ryan Hall (JR) concluded his season with some big smiles and some big PRs. I was so pleased to see him cut another .25 seconds 50 Fly and 1.59 seconds in 100 IM.
- Kathleen O’Malley (FR) had some great swims, particularly in the 20 Free where she cut .55 seconds and broke :30 seconds for the first time. She also swam a .01 second PR in 50 Fly.
- Teresa Bingham (7) was all smiles, and I could certainly see why. She cut a huge 1.02 seconds from her 50 Free PR during the individual event and repeated the PR leading off a 200 Free Relay when she cut .45 seconds. Teresa also had great swims in 100 IM and 50 Back.
- Caroline Pechie (7) had a great first season on the team, and wrapped it up in style. I was so pleased to see her 1.24 second PR in 50 Fly.
- Joseph Rowzie (7) was tremendous this season, constantly impressing me with his power in the water versus his size out of the water. On Saturday, Joseph swam 50 Free in 31.89, a time that was .65 seconds faster than ever before. He also had great first time swims in 50 Back and 50 Breast.
- Katie Dealey (FR) looked great in the water on Saturday, and it showed in her times. She somehow cut 3.22 seconds in 50 Fly – that’s huge! She also cut .46 seconds in 50 Back.
- Mary O’Malley (7) was awesome in the 50 Free, dropping a huge 1.32 seconds. Mary also had a great first time swims in 50 Back and 50 Breast.
- Maddie Given (7) wrapped up her season with some great swims. Not only did she cut .13 seconds from her 50 Free PR, she had great first-time swims in 50 Back and 50 Breast.
- Joey Dealey (6) was so excited to be a part of the meet, and I was so excited to have him as a part of the meet. Fortunately, he had a chance to swim with us at Time Trials so that we could fully appreciate his 2.75 second PR in 50 Free and his 1.53 second PR in 50 Fly.
- Brian Geiran (6) was also excited to be a part of the meet. He rewarded us all with some great swimming. How about a 1.72 second PR in 50 Free? He also had great times in 50 Back and 50 Breast, which he swam for the first time. Can’t wait to get Brian on the team next season!
- Timmy Kelly (8) missed Time Trials after his heart surgery, so we don’t know how much he improved for sure. I can tell you with great confidence though that Timmy has gotten a lot faster. I was particularly impressed with his 50 Back and 50 Breast on Saturday. Timmy was also a part of the gold medal 200 Breaststroke Relay.
- Sophia Zadnik (7) had great swims in her first attempts at 50 Back and 50 Breast. In spite of that, the highlight of her season for me was when she completed the CF Swim-a-thon. I can’t wait to get Sophia back next season.
- Patrick Murray (JR) closed out his season with a very strong swim in the 100 IM. He has never swum it before so I couldn’t tell how much he improved in the event – at least by time – but I could tell by sight. Patrick has made amazing improvement this season!
Samantha Wong of Renaissance Montessori Competes in 100 Free!
In so many of our lives, we have people almost literally lined up to tell us that we cannot do something – and many of us seem to insist on jumping to the head of that line. Too often, the person we most have to convince that we are capable of achieving something – great or small – is ourselves.
I was so pleased to watch Samantha Wong step out of line and take the risk that comes with competitive swimming at a public meet. On Saturday, Sam competed in an event that I imagine she thought she could never do – the 100 Freestyle. Last weekend, she also competed in 100 Back at Central Park.
I knew she could do it. Coach Zadnik and Coach Dalrymple knew she could do it. Her friends on the team knew she could do it.
Now she knows she can do it. Congratulations Sam!
The Remainder of the Championship Season
This National Catholic High School Championship was the first of four (4) championship meets for us this season. The remaining three (3) meets are over the next three (3) weekends, including:
- The VISAA Division II Invitational Championship – Saturday, February 4th at the Freedom Center.
- The DAC Conference Championship – Saturday, February 11th at the Fitch WARF
- The VISAA State Swimming and Diving Championship – Friday and Saturday, February 17-18th at the Christiansburg Aquatic Center near Virginia Tech.
Entries and information are posted for the Division II Invitational on Monday. The meet will be scored as a championship meet, but we will re-score it as a series of dual meets and use those scores between teams that have not yet met to determine the conference winner. Basically, I think if we beat Fredericksburg Academy in the dual meet scoring, we will win the conference championship.
All Varsity swimmers should be on deck ready to stretch by 12:39 p.m. at Freedom. Non-varsity swimmers are of course welcomed to join the team on deck – but wear your uniform. (I must say that it is getting a little old asking people to wear their uniform).
We are really pushing hard in practice during the month of January – do everything you can not to miss practice so we can all be ready for the last three (3) championship meets starting with our VISAA Division II Invitational this Saturday.
See you at practice!
Coach Jim Koehr