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Swimmers confident as postseason edges closer
A week ahead of the beginning of the postseason for swimming, the Mercer Island girls swim and dive team is feeling and looking confident. The team is currently undefeated under first-year head coach Chauntelle Johnson and spent yesterday afternoon swimming against Bainbridge, the final regular meet of the year.
“I’m feeling really, really good,” said Johnson of where the team is so far this season. “I think the girls feel good, too, and that’s translating into how they are doing in the pool.”
She said most of the swimmers are further along than where she expected at this point in the season, posting fast times early on.
“It’s really great to see them hit those times early and to know they are only going to get faster in the next couple weeks,” said Johnson. The coach attributed the team’s success all season to players’ hard work, especially with their mentality of focusing not just on the next meet, but where they want to go in the long-term.
Next week, the team starts off the postseason with KingCo swim and dive championships at Mary Wayte Pool on Oct. 29.
“I feel very confident, and I think the girls feel confident, about next week,” said Johnson.
Last week, the team finished its home season with a win over Bellevue. The final score was 108-78.
The Grace Wold, Danielle Deiparine, Masami Cookson and Jennifer Pak 200-yard medley relay team took the top time and qualified for state, with a time of 1 minute and 55 seconds. Wold also posted a first-place finish in the 200-yard individual medley race, again qualifying for state. Her time was 2:10.92. Pak won the 50-yard freestyle event, streaking to a 24.99 state time shortly before Wold qualified again in the 100-yard butterfly with a 58.72 finish. Pak finished first in the 100-yard freestyle event at 54.10 to again qualify for the state meet, before teammate Deiparine took the title in the 100-yard breaststroke event at 1:12.14. In the 400-yard freestyle relay event, Stephanie Hammond, Madeleine Chandless, Pak and Wold won the race with a time of 3:47.38.
In the girls’ 1-meter dive event, Islander Meggie Lindsey notched the highest score with a finish of 160.90, while her teammate Vanessa Gaffney finished second at 149.25. Maddison Crothamel was fourth in a field of five with a score of 110.05.
Over the weekend both Lindsey and Gaffney qualified for the KingCo league diving competition. Lindsey placed third overall with a score of 267.15 in a field of divers from both 3A and 4A schools. Divers from Juanita and Liberty placed in the top two spots. Gaffney finished fourth with a score of 237.45.