City-County Swim Meet


Posted: December 29, 2014
Special to The Winchester Star

WINCHESTER — Although all of the coaches were pleased with their teams’ performances, Sherando proved to be the class of the field Saturday at the 2014 City-County Holiday Sprints swim meet.

The Warriors won the combined team competition with a score of 295.99 as well as the boys’ competition with a score of 169.99 in a meet that featured a new format.

“This year we changed the format,” Handley coach Tag Grove said. “I wanted to change it up a little bit, and I talked to the other coaches about it. This is what came out of those conversations. I really think that the kids had a good time today. Everybody was missing some kids due to the holidays.”

Due to the time of year and a number of athletes from each team being away for the holidays the coaches decided to shorten the races by half.

“I think all of the coaches are really happy with the new format,” Warrior coach Joe Knight said. “We changed to a sprint format by reducing the distances by half. It’s a fun meet to have with this format. The kids get a break from their normal routine, and overall I think that it was a tremendous success, and I hope we seriously consider having meets with this format in years to come.”

Millbrook finished second with a combined score of 244 points, followed by James Wood (230), and Handley (227). The Colonels were the top of the field in the girls’ competition with 146 points, followed by Sherando (126) and Handley (101). The Judges were second in the boys’ competition with 126 points followed by Millbrook (101), and Wood (84).

Although the Warriors only took first in three events, Sherando’s depth proved to be the deciding factor in its victory. The Warriors had 20 swimmers finish in the top four, led by David Restrepo — who garnered three second-place finishes and one third-place finish.

“Our boys are having a surprising year,” Knight said. “At the beginning of the year we were really undefined. We only have 14 boys on the team and only seven have any experience in high school competition. To compete this well in an event like this was a lot of fun for them, and they gained a lot of experience in competing in high school meets.”

Sherando’s Ethan Medrano won the boys’ 50 meter free (27.20 seconds) and Jeremy Linaburg won the 50 meter breaststroke (36.86). Laura Ferguson took the 50 meter free (29.78) for the Warriors.

“Millbrook’s girls seemed to be the cream of the crop this year, and they swam exceedingly well today,” Knight said. “James Wood’s girls also swam well today. I really think this year is going to be the year of parity among the girls’ teams. Our girls swam really hard all day, and they also swam clean. We didn’t have single disqualification all day.”

Millbrook had by far the most first-place finishes, led by Abbey Esslinger who won the 50 butterfly (32.09) and the 50 breaststroke (38.24). She also led off the winning 200 free relay (2:04.58) that also included Sarah Jeffries, Lindsay Fairbanks, and Taylor Linder).

“We have a lot of young talent on our team, and they definitely swam their hearts out today,” Millbrook coach Will Sigler said. “We’re missing a few kids because of the holidays. Our girls’ 200 meter free relay almost qualified for state today. We got good swims from Taylor, Lindsay and Sarah today, too. We have only nine boys on the team this year, and we were missing three today, so I’m really impressed with what they were able to do.”

Chris Patton (100 free, 1:03.83), Patrick Northup (50 breast, 36.86), and Millbrook’s 100 free relay (58.10, Hunter Edwards, Curtiss Frederick, Patton, and Zach Hicks) won events.

Beside Esslinger, Millbrook’s Linder won the 100 free (1:07.31), Fairbanks won the 200 free (2:24.07) and nipped Wood’s Erin Jackson (34.48) in the 50 backstroke (34.11), and the Pioneers’ relay team of Jeffries, Emily Jones, Linder, and Abby McClellan won the 100 free relay (1:02.50).

Wood got first-place finishes from Conor Babington in the 100 individual medley (1:04.80), and the 50 butterfly (26.65). Sara Fergus won the 100 I.M. (1:18.83), and the 25 free (14.53) for the Colonels. She was also part of the Colonels’ winning 100 medley relay (1:08.29) that included Jackson, Abby Fergus and Zoe Schopick.

“This meet was just excellent,” Colonel coach Kaitlyn Knott said. “We had a great time today. Having the distances shorten by half really helped. The competitions were really close, and I was really proud of all of the kids. Conor is always strong in his events, and he was again today. Erin had a really great race in the backstroke.”

The Handley boys’ team combined for four first-place finishes.

Judges senior Scott Mikulec won the 25 free (12.12) and senior teammate Cole Stevens won the 50 back (33:11). Handley also won the 100 medley relay (1:01.41, Stevens, William Yuan, Alex Day and Mikulec), and the 200 free relay (1:50.41, Day, Stevens, Yuan and Mikulec).

“I was real pleased with the way our kids swam today,” Grove said. “But I also thought that the kids from the other teams were also swimming real well and had a lot of fun.”



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