Swimmers face District 3 competition
An almost complete girls’ team and a significantly reduced boys’ team got a glimpse of their District 3 Championship competition at the Albany Sprint Invitational on January 22.
Teams from Philomath, Sweet Home, Stayton, Cascade, Jefferson, Junction City, Blanchet and Central were represented.
In spite of the tough competition, the Outlaws held their own and achieved some well deserved wins and personal records.
Leading the competition in the 200 yds medley “A” relay was the foursome of Katie Stewart (32.19), Tia Berg (39.29), Michelle Young (28.77) and Samantha Williamson (28.28 PR). Their final time of 2:08.53 was 1.13 seconds faster than their time at Dallas on January 19.
The “B” relay with Jordan Williams, Cierra Tigard, Codie Lagao and Geneieve McKenzie finished 6th but barely 0.72 seconds behind the Stayton “B” team. For the Outlaws “B” team to swim in Championship finals, they will have to drop a second on each leg.
Michelle Young swept the competition in the 100 yds individual medley with a first place in 1:07.56. Tia Berg added a great 3rd place (1:14.24) in the same event. “A projected time of 2:38 in the 200 IM could put Berg into the top three finishers at Districts”, coach Hedemark. Berg added important team points with her 4th place finish in the 50 yds butterfly.
Samantha Williamson was second in the 100 yds freestyle with another PR (1:02.84) just 0.71 seconds behind winner Julie Wallace from Stayton who finished third at Districts last year.
Katie Stewart was third in the 500 yds freestyle (6:10.45). “Stewart, one of the top all-round Outlaw competitors, will have to shave off a bit more than one second each 50 in order to be in the very top at Districts”, coach Hedemark commented.
The 200 yds freestyle “A” relay (1:52.38) finished with a very respectable second place behind the top Stayton team (1:52.24) with seniors Jessie Wallace and Emma Englehart. The Outlaws’ line-up of Katie Stewart (28.73), Codie Lagao (28.71) and Sam Williamson (28.41 PR) were just a touch too far behind to let Michelle Young (26.53 PR), in spite of a heroic effort, catch the Stayton anchor. However, the Outlaw girls have out-touched the Stayton swimmers already twice this season.
Top finish on the boys’ side was a second place in the “A” 200 yds medley relay (2:00.47) with Tyler Baldessari in the backstroke (29.43), Ian Baldessari in the breaststroke (34.93 PR), Jake Miller in the butterfly (29.79) and anchor Tyler Berg in the freestyle (26.32).
The boys added a 4th place in the 200 yds freestyle relay with Tyler Berg (26.52) as starter, followed by freshman Brennan Miller (26.77), Jake Miller (24.40 PR) and anchor Tyler Baldessari (24.70 PR). Their combined time of 1:42.39 is still 2.33 seconds slower than last year’s state qualifying time of 1:40.06.
Tyler Baldessari added a commendable 5th place in the 100 yds individual medley (1:05.29) to the team score. “A projected time of 2:20 for the 200 IM could put Tyler into the top six at Districts”, Hedemark said.
Brennan Miller and Ian Baldessari were top finishers with 5th places in the 50 yds backstroke (31.7 PR) and 50 yds breaststroke (35.28) respectively.
The Outlaws travel back to Albany on Wednesday for the Junction City meet with Stayton and on Friday the team will be in Sweet Home for the last meet before District Championships.