By Steven Kochersperger
It might not have been the path to a sectional crown that coach Larry Zoller wanted but in the end its the results that matter. Mount Vernon’s girls swim team struggled to gain the momentum and cushion in the points they hoped for Saturday, but a lot of that had to do with the great performance of the Castle swim team. Castle set five new school record in the sectional swim meet but it was Mount Vernon that found themselves 19 points ahead in the end giving the Wet Cats yet another sectional crown.
“Castle had a good meet,” coach Zoller said. “We couldn’t get the momentum we wanted going but we had enough points at the end to win and that’s what counts. We ended up qualifying in every event but one for the state meet and have set ourselves up pretty good for the state swim championships next week.”
One strategy that worked for the Wildcats was to stack their relay teams with their best swimmers. This helped gain very important points with wins by the relay teams on Saturday and gave other swimmers time to focus on their specific races.
The Sectional meet opened with an impressive showing in the 200 yard medley relay. The Wildcat team of Samantha Gowdy, Claudia Crawford, Kelsey Turner, and Clara Baggett won the race with a time of 1:45.31. This time set a pool and sectional record that the Cats set just last year with a time of 1:46.47. In the 400 Relay Samantha Gowdy, Kelsey Turner, Clara Baggett, and Drew Glover won in impressive style with a time of 3:33.86 giving them the points to be crowned sectional champs.
Sophomore Clara Baggett seemed to enjoy the sectional meet winning four races to help the Wet Cats as a team. Not only did she help the relay teams in the 200 and 400 relay races, but she also posted wins in the 50 freestyle race and the 100 free. And even though she seemed to have a big sectional performance, her focus after the meet was on the Seniors. “It’s our awesome seniors who got us here,” Baggett said.
Those seniors, Kelsey Turner and Taylor Cullman also were thankful and reflective after the sectional win.”It’s amazing to be apart of it,” Turner said. “Swimming for Mount Vernon is such a big deal and we put so much time into it. Its been really rewarding to come here and do what we have done.” Turner put up great times in the relay races Saturday and finished second in the 100
butterfly as well.
Cullman helped the cats with her great performance in the 200 freestyle relay race that came up just short to the Castle team. It was not easy for her to hold back the emotions Saturday as she knows her high school swim career is on the back end with just the state meet left. “It’s really sad because this is my last meet in this area,’
Cullman said.”I’ve had a lot of fun swimming in the last six or seven years and its been a great ride.”
In diving Katie McDonald finished second after nailing some pretty great dives. Entering the finals McDonald found herself in 5th place and when the finals were over she ended in second place. McDonald will now move on to dive in the Regional Diving competitions this week.
Mount Vernon finished the Sectionals with 508 points while Castle finished in second with 489. Memorial was third with 326, Mater Dei fourth with 194, and Reitz fifth with 164. The rest of the field was as follows: Central 126,Bosse 99, North 87, Gibson Southern 87, Boonville 79, Harrison 43, Day School 11.
The girls team now travels to Indianapolis this Saturday to compete in the State Championships. Good luck Wet Cats!
By Steven Kochersperger
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