FORT WAYNE – Both the Homestead and Carroll girls swimming coaches know they have young teams, but age did not seem to be a major factor for either team during Saturday’s sectional meet at South Side.
We graduated a large senior class last year, and we have a lot of young swimmers, said Homestead coach Chad Englehart, who has won 10 sectional titles in as many years. Based on how we swam today, next year’s sectionals should be even better.
Homestead finished first with 542 points followed by Carroll (455) and Snider (399).
The Spartans recorded 10 qualifying times for the state championships, including a repeat of seniors Reagan Cook and Caroline Weigand’s 1-2 finish in the 200 IM from last year’s sectionals, with both swimmers earning state-cut times.
We started the day with a win, took two of the three relays and finished with a record, Englehart said. There were some we felt could have qualified, but it just didn’t happen today.
All three relay teams for Homestead and Carroll hit state-cut times. Homestead had three swimmers qualify in the 100 butterfly (Cook, Kaitlyn Ducker and Katie Krivacs), Skylar Duggins in the 100 backstroke and Weigand also qualified in the 100 breaststroke.
The Chargers had eight qualifying times for the state meet, including sophomore Courtney Kresl who set sectional records in the 50- and 100-yard freestyle in times of 23.36 seconds and 51.49 seconds.
It was just unreal, Kresl said of her records. It’s been a long season. I swam really well at conference, and I’m glad I swam really well today. I just hope I can make it last until next weekend.
Carroll head coach John Gibson was pleased with the performances of his young swimmers.
We have two seniors and a lot of freshmen and even sophomores who just joined the team, he said. Some were still pretty tired and not completely rested, but I’m proud of how they swam today.
Both of Carroll’s seniors qualified with a relay team, and individually: Sarah Pushis in the 100 backstroke and Ciana Heaston in the 100 breaststroke. Freshman Abigail Johnson qualified in the 100 butterfly.
Snider senior Hannah Miller finished first in the 200 and 500 freestyle, and Georgia Baldus finished second in the 200 and fifth in the 200 butterfly earning state-cut times. Erica Evans of Bishop Dwenger finished second in the 50 freestyle, also earning a state-cut time.
The state preliminaries are scheduled for Friday and the finals Saturday at the IU Natatorium in Indianapolis.