A stroke towards success

Wildcats swim circles around Gretna

Freshman Ryleigh Brooking takes 2nd place in the 500 Freestyle at the Gretna Dual meet. Brooking broke her previous season best with a time of 6:17.49.

Photo by Jeff Wilber

Freshman Ryleigh Brooking takes 2nd place in the 500 Freestyle at the Gretna Dual meet. Brooking broke her previous season best with a time of 6:17.49.

Miguel Paredes Reyes, Sports Director

On Saturday, January 16, the varsity swim team went up against Gretna in an in-person dual meet. 

Due to the lingering pandemic, the Millard North Invite, which was supposed to take place on that day, had been cancelled. That did not stop these swimmeres from competing although it was still a big meet.

The meet started with the girls placing 2nd and 4th in the 200 Free Relay. The best of the two relays, which consisted of seniors Emily Benjamin and Sydney Rangeloff, as well freshmen Thea Kutash and Brooklyn Bischoff, ended with a time of 2:09.18. The girls regained the advantage in the 200 Freestyle with senior Isabelle Berlin and junior Aliah Rhoades going one and two in the event. Rangeloff and Benjamin come back to take the top two spots in the 200 IM to extend the point total for the girls and senior Mia Olson finishing first in the 50 Freestyle to extend their lead going into the break. 

“I felt really great,” Olson said. “Not only about my own swimming but the team as a whole. I’m really excited for the rest of the season knowing we’re racing the best we can and everyone is happy to be here.” 

Rangeloff finds herself in first place in back to back events, winning the 100 Butterfly with a time of 1:08.69. The girls continued to outshine Gretna and by taking all three top spots in the 100 freestyle led by Olson, senior Aubri Hukill and Rhoades. In the 500 Freestyle, senior Valentina Quintana takes first, freshman Ryleigh Brooking takes second and junior Emily Gilbert takes third. The girls team fails to disappoint in the 200 free relay winning once again with the B relay taking third. Berlin absolutely annailates the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:01.32. Gretna manages to sneak the top two spots in the 100 breaststroke and the girls finish in one and two in the 400 free relay. 

 The boys started off much better taking first in the relay with a time of 1:44.20 with seniors Dylan Fucik, Seth Witkowski, Tanner Klahn and Andrew Kenny leading the charge. The boys continue to dominate as freshman Quentin Nelson, sophomore Noah Wilber and junior Samuel Kirchner take up all top three spots in the 200 freestyle. Klahn and junior Miguel Paredes Reyes took second and third place in the 200 IM and Fucik took the top spot again in the 50 freestyle.

“Everyone did their best,” Klahn said. “We all went all out, many of us got best times whether they were personal bests or season bests. I think overall our relays were the best.”

After the break Klahn, Paredes Reyes and senior Idell Wostoupal took first, second and third in the 100 butterfly. Their domination continued as seniors Colby Frazier and Seth Witkowski go two and three in the 100 Freestyle and freshman JJ Robson and Wilber also take second and third in the 500 freestyle. The 200 freestyle relay manages to slightly out touch Gretna to win the event by 0.78 seconds. In the last three events, Fucik, Frazier and freshman Zach Butzyack took the top three sports in the 100 back. The meet ended with Witkowski and sophomore Brigham Lau taking second and third in the 100 breaststroke and all three top spots in the 400 free relay taken up by Millard West.

“We just need to keep improving,” head coach Jamie Bowcott said. “This meet was a great step forward for this team and a good measuring point to where we are nearing the end of the season.”

The girls ended the meet with a huge victory 107- 58, and the boys also won 115-46. These Wildcats have just one meet left before the Metro Conference Championship.