I drove home from the meet on Saturday while enjoying my favorite Central American import with a big smile on my face. We’ve only been able to have 10 or 11 practices, but we still managed to swim 88 Personal Records, win the meet against all comers – and most importantly for me right now – hold a meet with enough well executed procedures that we are able to continue our season. Check, check, check – Seton wins on all accounts.
None of this would be possible without the tremendous contributions from so many of you. I have to start with big shout out to Kimberly and Jerry Dalrymple, Managers Wystan Byers and Sofie Harangozo, and Bill Dealey – this would not have happened without them. On Friday night at 10:30 p.m. eastern time, I was still in Corpus Christi, TX celebrating with my son Patrick who got his Wings out of Navy Flight School – a proud papa moment for sure.
It required a 4-hour drive to Houston and a 5:00 a.m. flight to get to the meet right before it started. When I arrived, this group of dedicated volunteers had the pool and scoring systems set-up, the sound system running, meet programs posted, and team areas organized. A little sleep deprivation did not leave me in the best frame of mind for expressions of gratitude, so I’d like to make sure they all know how grateful I was that I could both see my son and be a swim coach.
After scanning the Psych Sheet on the airplane, I got a little worried that our in-conference rival Trinity Christian was going to cause us a big problem with the several new USA swimmers that they picked up this season, but fortunately we were able to prevail in a close meet against the TCS girls. We were able to win the other meets with much more comfort, particularly on the boy’s side:
Seton Swimming 148.0 Trinity Christian 136.0
Seton Swimming 187.5 Oakcrest 88.5
Seton Swimming 216.0 Carmel School 17.0
Seton Swimming 220.0 Immanuel Christian 24.0
Seton Swimming 167.0 Trinity Christian 87.0
Seton Swimming 163.0 Immanuel Christian 77.0
Seton Swimming 195.0 Carmel School 28.0
If you want to better understand how a high school swim meet is scored, check out Coach Koehr’s Blog or click here.
New Swimmers Were Key for the Girls
Trinity Christian picked up some excellent new swimmers, many of whom are young. Teagan Stermer (FR), Reagan Buff (FR), Larkin Fletcher (8) and Selah Bang (SO) have joined Teresa Klanderman (SR), Caroline Sykes (SR), Elizabeth Klanderman (8), Jenna Phillips (SR) and superstar Annalise Cornett (SR) to add a lot of power to their team, particular their relays.
Fortunately for Seton, we also picked up some new talent – and it made all the difference for us.:
- Clara Condon (8) was on a roll Saturday, winning both of her individual events in Personal Record time. In the 200 IM, she beat her previous best by 4.89 seconds and in 100 Fly, she beat her previous best by 1.54 seconds. 2:28.15 in 200 IM and 1:07.59 in 100 Fly are outstanding times for an 8th grader – and neither of those are her best event. Clara is a true four (4) stroke swimmer which is an important part of our philosophy at Seton Swimming. Don’t worry Clara, there’s plenty of time in the season for you to swim plenty of breaststroke.
- Angie Testani (8) is also going to be a superstar for Seton, I can see it already. Like Clara, we are going to spread her talent across all eight (8) individual events rather than pigeon-hole her as a just a great breaststroker. She showed she could do it with an outstanding sub-6:00 swim in the 500 Free that was 33.39 seconds faster than her previous best from her USA team. A sub-6:00 500 Free for an 8th grade girl is superior! She also did not surprise me with her 2.16 second PR in 50 Free that won the event handily over a senior sprinter from TCS.
- Lucy Garvey (JR) has come home to Seton from John Paul the Great. A few years ago, she swam with us when we helped form a small team from Renaissance Montessori, so it is extra gratifying to have her on our team this year. Lucy is already adding to the leadership we have seen from our outstanding class of Junior girls. Not only did Lucy cut 2.93 seconds from her PR in 200 Free and .50 seconds from her PR in 100 Fly, she also got us the lead in the medley relay with a strong 50 Backstroke and kept us even with TCS leading off our 400 Free Relay.
There are a couple interesting implications with the addition of these new swimmers:
One implication is for our Team Record in 100 Breaststroke. The current record of 1:07.70 was set by Cat Rogers at States in 2012. Clara has been 1:09.69 and Angie has been 1:10.12. Cat was a junior before she swam times like that. I’m getting the ladder ready.
Interestingly enough, the DAC Conference record is probably also in jeopardy since it is also a 1:07 (1:07.06), set last year by Annika Luce of Fredericksburg Academy. Annika was only a sophomore last year, so that target is likely to get lower. I hope she swims in DAC Champs this year.
The other big implication is for our relays during the upcoming championship season. We have a strong group of returning girls, some who are out for the time being (like Isabelle Luevano and Clare Waldron). You are going to see me really mix up the relay line-ups over the next few meets until I find the best combination that will score the most points in the Conference, Division II, and the virtual State Championship meets.
If we can put together a couple relays that can beat Trinity Christian and Williamsburg Christian, we would be in a good position to win another State Championship this season. Given that both Clara and Angie are most competitive in Breaststroke at the State-level, that is probably going to have to be the 200 Medley Relay and the 200 Free Relay (the 400 Free Relay is immediately after 100 Breaststroke).
Our girls won four (4) VISAA Division II State Championships in a row from 2008 to 2011. Can we have another run for our girls from 2021 to 2025?
Top Scorers from Saturday
As has become our modus operandi, we won on Saturday with solid swimming from our leading swimmers and loads of additional points from our depth.
Here were the top scorers from our very strong boy’s team – notice how many of them are young swimmers:
- Jack Santschi (SR) took a year off, but he is back with a vengeance this season. His trademark “long and strong” freestyle won the 50 Free by nearly 3 seconds and scored in 2nd place in the 200 Free. It’s great to have our leading sprinter back!
- Evan Wilson (SR) showed his versatility with a big win in 100 Breaststroke and a 2nd place in the 200 IM. The last 25 yards of his 100 Breaststroke was particularly impressive, especially considering the limited training we’ve done so far this year.
I highlighted this earlier in the week, but I’ll add another mention here: Congratulations to Jack and Evan who I made Team Captains. They have shown me a great work ethic and attitude this season, so the honor is well deserved.
- Liam Kellogg (SR) has come back strong, scoring in 2nd place overall in 100 Free and 4th place overall in 100 Breaststroke. With more conditioning, I can see Liam as one of our top scorers all season long.
- Joe Wilson (SO) is looking very strong early in the season. Joe scored in 3rd place twice, once with a 1.19 second PR in 200 Free and once in 100 Back. Joe is a great four stroke swimmer who gives us coaches a lot of scoring options.
- Jerry Dalrymple (SR) did not disappoint, scoring in 4th place overall in both 200 Free and 100 Fly. I also loved his 50 Fly in our medley relay where he put us in the lead for good. We’ve used a lot of our limited time on stroke technique, so I know that, once we get some more cardio work under our belt, Jerry will shine even more.
- David Hudson (FR) had a great meet. His .21 second PR in 100 Back scored in 4th Once he gets in better shape with more practice, I can’t wait to see what he can do in that event. David would have scored in 3rd place overall in 100 Free, but somehow his coach accidently marked his entry as exhibition. Sorry, David – I know you really got 3rd!
- Connor Koehr (8) is going to score a lot of points for Seton over the next five (5) years. Not only is Connor Seton’s leading male diver, he also won the 500 Free after dropping 9.05 seconds, finishing just barely above 7:00, he took 6th place in 200 IM with a 12.24 second PR, and he led off the 400 Free Relay with a .15 second PR in 100 Free. All of those PRs in the most difficult events are made more amazing by the limited conditioning we have done so far this year.
- Max Wilson (8) has a lot of heart, and it is going to get him a long way on this team. He placed 2nd in the 500 Free, and he would have scored in 100 Fly if not for a DQ.
- Seth Kellogg (8) is showing a lot of improvement already this season by dropping a whopping 4.13 seconds in 50 Free (5th place) and 27.00 seconds in 500 Free (4th place). This is Seth’s first year eligible to score, and he is taking full advantage of it.
- Mick Fioramonti (FR) cut 15.27 seconds in 200 IM to score in 5th place overall, and he cut 1.59 seconds from his 100 Free to score in 6th place overall. He’s also diving for Seton, so he is developing into a multi-dimensional scoring threat.
- Michael Brox (8) is going to be one to watch. I was so pleased when I saw him in the water looking so good. I was even more pleased with his 40.01 second PR that scored 3rd in the 500 Free and his first attempt at 200 IM in only 2:50.98 that scored in 4th place overall. I’m getting very excited about Michael’s future on our team.
- Nicholas Nagurny (FR) has already shown what a great addition he’s been to our team this year. He scored in 7th place overall in 100 Free with a .17 second PR in 100 Free. Nicholas also scored in 6th place overall in 100 Back.
- Ben Osilka (SO) is also new to the team this year and is already having an impact. How about his 3.76 second PR in 50 Free and his .29 second PR in 100 Free! In the 50 Free, Ben scored in 6th place overall.
And here were the top scorers from our girl’s team that I have not previously mentioned:
- Mary Pennefather (SO) was, well, Mary Pennefather on Saturday. It started in the first event, the 200 Medley Relay, where she started two (2) body-lengths behind and ended up pulling out the event handily for Seton. She has an incredibly strong relay start, so that alone made up one of the body-lengths. Individually, Mary scored in 2nd place twice – once in 100 Free and once in 100 Breaststroke, the later with a .32 second PR. Believe it or not, Mary also is on the Diving team making her what has to be the only Seton athlete to compete is three (3) sports in the same season.
- Maggie Gibbons (FR) scored big with her 3rd place finish in 50 Free and her 6th place finish in 100 Free. Her 100 Free was a 1.58 second PR – very encouraging this early in the season.
- Mary O’Malley (JR) had a great meet, including a .72 second PR in 50 Free that scored 4th and a 5th place finish in 200 Free. Mary’s 100 Free lead-off leg for our 400 Free Relay was also strong, surprisingly close to her PR for this point in her training.
- Sophia Zadnik (JR) scored a lot of points on Saturday, finishing 4th in 100 Breaststroke and 8th in 100 Fly. Sophia just quietly works hard at practice and has been doing that for several years now. It is great to see her get some of the pay-off.
- Teresa Bingham (JR) was super on Saturday, spreading her trademark joy everywhere she went. Teresa scored in 5th place for the 500 Free and 6th place for the 200 Free. It is great to know that I can use Teresa in literally any of the eight (8) individual events with the expectation that she will score.
- Lily Byers (JR) showed a lot of early promise with her .80 second PR in 200 IM (6th place) and her 7th place finish in 100 Free. Like Teresa, Lily is another swimmer that I can use anywhere.
- Emily Flynn (JR) scored in 6th place overall for both 100 Fly and 100 Back. Emily also had a strong Fly leg on our 1st place 200 Medley Relay and a strong lead off leg for our 200 Free Relay.
- Ava Hudson (FR) has emerged this year as one of our leading scorers. Only a freshman, it was great to see her score in 5th place for 200 IM and 7th place for 100 Back. She also had a great 50 Back swim leading off a medley relay – it was a 2.02 second PR that makes her one of our top backstrokers now.
Making the Coach Proud
A big part of the influx of swimmers to our team this year have been swimmers that are new or relatively new to swimming as a competitive sport. It is already really fun for me to watch swimmers like this learn the joy of this great sport.
I could call out 15 or 20 of them easily, but let me highlight a few who really made me proud to watch them on Saturday:
- Theresa Byers (JR) is completely new to swimming and swims with me on Wednesday and Friday mornings. She is really trying hard to improve – and boy is she getting better! How about a 9.25 second drop in 50 Free and a 12.69 second drop in 100 Free! That was huge! She’s really doing a nice job of getting on her side and gliding. And her start was also a massively improved.
- Anthony Morales (7) has come soooo far already this season, and it showed on Saturday after he dropped 5.07 seconds in 50 Free and 16.14 seconds in 100 Free. It is fun to watch him be so methodical with his rapidly improving stroke technique.
- Rebekah DeWolf (JR) is another junior who is new to swimming and improving really fast. Her great desire to improve led to a 4.24 second PR in 50 Free and what would have been a 6.93 second PR in 100 Free had she touched that last wall. We’ll do that one again Rebekah and it will be even faster!
- Jacinta Gonzalez (JR) has made amazing levels of improvement in her first time swimming competitively. I was really pleased to watch her dive on the blocks for the first time and then cut 3.78 seconds in 50 Free and .58 seconds in 100 Free.
- Christian Ghering (8) had what may have been the biggest drops of the day with his 27.94 second PR in 100 Free and his 10.41 second PR in 50 Free. If he keeps working and listening to his coaches, I’d expect similar drops again over the next few weeks.
- Lucy Cunningham (8) has shown so much improvement in her stroke technique that I wanted to see what she could do in the 500 Free. She didn’t let me down – she had a great swim. We are going to have to get her a lap counter who can count, however, since they told her to stop after on 18 lengths. 😉
- Josh Fioramonti (7) is following in the Fioramonti tradition of hard work and loads of determination, and the results are showing – in both swimming and diving. In swimming, Josh cut 1.80 seconds from his 50 Free PR and 1.78 seconds from his 100 Free PR.
- Greg Bauer (7) is going to be a good swimmer. He’s improved so much already that I had to look down at my meet program to see who was swimming in his lane. I was so pleased to see him drop 6.11 seconds in 100 Free and 3.38 seconds in 50 Free.
- Max Gonzalez (8) is making tremendous progress. On Saturday, he cut 11.81 seconds in 100 Free and 4.68 seconds in 50 Free. I can clearly see that Max can be a pretty good swimmer if he keeps working at it like he has been so far.
- Teresa Mosimann (SR) is not new to the sport of swimming, but I want to mention her here because she is a senior swimming on the team for the first time. What a great addition to the team she is! Had I not entered her as an exhibition swimmer, she would have gotten 8th overall in 50 Free after a huge 2.51 second PR!
- Anastasia Garvey (7) is not new to the sport of swimming, but let me mention her here because she is going to be one to watch when she is eligible to score next season. Her times are already more than fast enough to make a major contribution to Seton’s competitiveness – and they are getting even faster. She cut 5.27 seconds from her 100 Free PR and 2.82 seconds from her 50 Free PR.
For those of you who have been around Seton Swimming for a while, you know that the most important thing to me is that we are getting better. In our GEMS, the “E” stands for Excellence, about which I say “It is not about good, it is about better”.
I’ve learned over the past 20 years that, if we all get better, the winning takes care of itself. Our metric for this is Personal Records or “PRs”, a term you’ve seen me use repeatedly so far in this blog. We had 88 of them on Saturday.
Here are the rest of our PRs that have not been previously mentioned:
- Julia Atkinson (FR) has been one of my key demonstrators during drills in practice, so I was very pleased to see her cut .60 seconds from her 50 Free PR.
- Molly Bauer (8) is giving Teresa Bingham and Mary O’Malley a run for their money for the “Most Joyful Swimmer” Award. It is so much fun to watch her when she does well – like I got to see when she cut .76 seconds from her 50 Free PR on Saturday.
- Meg Blanchette (8) had two PRs, one in 50 Free by .07 seconds and one in 100 Free by 2.79 seconds.
- Nora Blanchette (7) brings great joy to our Wednesday/Friday Group 5 practices, so it was fun for me to watch her drop 4.74 seconds in 50 Free and 2.68 seconds in 100 Free.
- Emma Catabui (JR) is participating on the team five (5) days per week now – three days as a swimmer and three days as a captain of the Diving Team. On Saturday, she competed in both swimming and diving, and she even swam a 2.95 second PR in 100 Free.
- Kyle Da Re (SR) dropped 3.70 seconds in 50 Back leading off a medley relay and .17 seconds in 50 Free. I was very pleased with that backstroke in particular.
- Elizabeth Francis (8) cut .76 seconds from her 50 Free PR. I’m really liking what I see from her in practice.
- Orla Haggerty (8) had two PRs including a 2.45 second drop in 50 Free and a 4.22 second drop in 100 Free.
- Daniel Hurley (7) showed big improvement on Saturday with his 8.41 second PR in 50 Free and his 5.79 second PR in 100 Free.
- Teresa Kerlek (SR) has had to miss a lot of practice due to illness, but that didn’t stop her from swimming a 2.69 second PR in 50 Back leading off a medley relay.
- Colette Kramer (7) lowered her 50 Free PR by 8.35 seconds and her 100 Free by 6.82 seconds in 100 Free. I love the joy that Colette brings to practice.
- Chris Lynch (FR) cut 2.33 seconds from his 100 Breaststroke PR and 2.85 seconds from his 50 Free PR.
- Dominic Miller (FR) would have cut more than seven (7) seconds from his 100 Back PR had he not rolled over on his stomach. We’ll do that one again Dominic!
- Joey Munsell (FR) had two (2) PRs: 50 Free by 2.47 seconds and 100 Free by 2.04 seconds. That swim in 50 Free scored in 7th place overall.
- Mary Catherine Munsell (7) seems to be enjoying her first year on the team, and it showed in her results. How about her 2.40 second PR in 50 Free and her .47 second PR in 100 Free!
- Kevin Norton (7) is starting to get pretty good after his 4.03 second PR in 50 Free and his 6.57 second PR in 100 Free.
- Jenna Novecosky (SO) is both new to Seton Swimming and new to Seton School, so I’m very pleased to see her join the swim team and showing so much improvement already. She cut 3.72 seconds in 100 Free and who knows how much in 50 Free since I didn’t have a previous time on her. Whatever it was, I’m quite sure it was a lot – I can see it in the water.
- Shannon O’Malley (8) is a strong part of the 8th grade girls class we have on the team this year, and here 2.54 second PR in 100 Free and her 1.11 second PR in 50 Free will make her even stronger.
- Mary Claire Osilka (7) lowered her 50 Free PR by 2.66 seconds and her 100 Free PR by .22 seconds.
- Jacqueline Oswald (SO) has been another great addition to the team this season. Her 2.20 second PR in 50 Free has gotten her down to a pretty competitive time already. In fact, had she not been entered as an exhibition swimmer, she would have scored in 7th
- Lucy Pennefather (8) is definitely going to be a good one if she keeps improving at the rate she improved on Saturday. I was pumped to watch her 200 Free where she dropped 40.47 seconds!
- Jojo Vander Woude (8) is really taking to this new sport for her family. It was great to see her drop 2.47 seconds in 50 Free.
- Madelyn Zadnik (FR) had two very good swims on Saturday night, lowering her 200 Free PR by 2.44 seconds and her 100 Breast PR by 1.23 seconds.
I’d like to start with a shout-out here to Ceili Koehr and Jerry Dalrymple for stepping in to score the meet. And thank you to Will Waldron for stepping in to be the Announcer in my absence. Great work to all of you!
Here is what Coach Seamus Koehr had to say about Saturday’s Diving Meet:
Saturdays meet went smoothly. Our divers seem to be conducive to the competitive environment. Almost every diver performed noticeably better once the meet started. We are happy the swimmers finally got to see the diving team perform. Most all our divers had a good meet.
Saturdays meet went smoothly. Our divers seem to perform well under competitive conditions. Almost every diver performed noticeably better once the meet started. We are happy the swimmers finally got to see the diving team perform. Most all our divers had a good meet.
- Connor Koehr (8th) – Scored First place in Saturdays meet scoring a total of 123.08. Unsurprisingly, Connor had a great meet. His 101C is still very smooth and straight. He received 6’s.
- Anthony Hudson (Sr) – Scored Second place in Saturdays meet scoring a total of 122.1. This was Tony’s first meet of the season. Tony learned a 302C for the very first time in warmups and competed it scoring a 5.5 and a 4.5.
- Mick Fioramonti (Fr) – Scored Third place, scoring a total of 112.05. That is a 13.83PR. Mick is generally improving in all categories of diving and did a 5122D for the first time during this meet scoring a 4.5 and 5.
- Evan Wilson (Sr) – This was Evan’s first meet of the season and he scored 111.15. Evan is learning quickly and is a very promising member of the team. We can’t wait to see what his enthusiasm will take him.
- Josh Fioramonti (7th) – Scored a 100.58. Josh’s highlight of this meet was his 202A for which he received a 6.
- Joseph Wilson (So)– Improved astronomically over this past week. Scoring a 72.68, he got a 31.73-point PR. Joe learned three new dives during competition. 401C, 102C, and 5121D. He is willing to try new things even if he has never done them before and that is a quality we want in our divers.
- Max Wilson (8th) – Scored a 78.9. This is a 1.57-point PR. Max impressed us by learning a reverse dive for the first time during warm ups and scoring a 3 during the meet.
- Dominic Miller (Fr) – Scored 69.45. Dominic has improved in his entries a noticeable amount. Dominic’s highlight was his 401C, a dive he has had trouble with in the past, for which he received a 5.0
- Mary Pennefather (So) – Scored First place for the girls this meet. She scored a 70.95 which is a 13.5-point PR.
- Emma Catabui (Jr) – This was Emma’s first meet. She completed 4 dives this meet. Emma is one of our captains and takes the sport seriously. We look forward to her future on this team.
- Delaney Farmer (So) – Delany completed 3 dives this meet. Delany’s highlight this meet was in warmups when she helped a fellow diver learn a 401 for the first time.
- I have been very pleased with the leadership I have been seeing from our Captains.
- We’ve been missing some of them on and off for reasons outside their control, so it has been doubly important for the ones who have been able to be there to step up.
- Warm-up Lanes at Swim Meets
- One thing that seems to be confusing all of you is how I have our Meet warm-ups scheduled. You sit in the stands by grade (so you can be with your friends), but we warm-up based on practice group so we can keep swimmers of the similar ability together.
- The practice groups are published with the Team Roster (scroll down), but here are the groups again:
- Group 1 – Coaches Pat Mulhern and Ross Palazzo
- Group 2 – Coaches DD Ross and Heidi Santschi
- Group 3 – Coaches John Halisky and Patrick Dealey
- Group 4 – Coaches Jerry Zadnik and Linda Byers
- Group 5 – the Wednesday/Friday practice group with me, Coach Zadnik, Virginia Hartung and Madelyn Zadnik
- Thanks for volunteering to coach Virginia and Madelyn!
- And remember that we start in the water with two (2) swimmers on the end of each lane.
- Snow Policy
- The forecast is calling for snow on Wednesday so we need a plan.
- Normally, we just follow Prince William County Public Schools, but since that won’t work this season, I’ll make the call personally by 4:45 a.m. in the morning.
- Check your e-mail and the Home Page of setonswimming.org for any announcement of a practice cancellation.
- I’ll try to put up an announcement either way, but if you don’t see one, then assume we have practice.
- I want to reiterate the role that prudence will play in allowing us to continue our season. If you are sick or if you know you have been closely exposed to someone who is sick, please don’t come to practice.
- Pushing through or ignoring sickness could jeopardize the season for the whole team – please don’t do that.
See you at practice on Monday morning at 6:19 a.m.
Coach Jim Koehr