Monday, January 30th, 2017
Bulldog swimmers sweep WBL crowns
Minster girls win Cavalier Invitational
By Gary R. Rasberry
Amanda Slechter was a key contributor for the Celina girls swimming team capturi. . .
Compiled by Gary R. Rasberry
Saturday was a memorable day for the Celina swimming and diving program at the Western Buckeye League championships in Defiance.
The greatest moment came as the Bulldog girls' 400-yard freestyle relay capped off a big meet with a victory to give Celina its first ever girls' league championships in the 20th season of league action.
Minutes later, the Celina boys' 400 free relay finished second to clinch for the Bulldogs their ninth league title in school history and first since 2014, allowing Celina to sweep the team championships for the first time ever.
All-in-all, it was an amazing day for the team and head coach Matt May, who swept the Coach of the Year honors in the league with the championships.
"Pretty good feeling, especially for the seniors," May said. "We have a pretty big crowd of senior boys this year. They won it as freshmen and to finish off their senior year and win it again was a special event.
"For the girls, it was years in waiting. We've come within a couple of points of being champions (over the years). They finally pulled it off. An emotional time for the girls. That 400 relay with Paige Sutter, the only senior swimmer, was icing on the cake."
After Sawyer Weitzel won her third straight league diving title on Tuesday, Kenzie Conn continued the success for the girls on Saturday in winning the 100 freestyle. Several events later, Conn turned around, literally, and swam the 100 backstroke to victory. The final win for the ladies came in the 400 freestyle as Conn, Zoe Rolfes, Paige Sutter and Amanda Slechter cruised to victory.
Added to the mix were multiple high finishes. Danielle Slechter and Sutter finished second and third in both the 200 and 500 freestyles. Amanda Slechter was second in both the Individual Medley and 100 butterfly and McKenna Black was second in the 50 free.
The Celina boys broke two league records among their victories. Freshman Justin Fleagle set a new record in the 100 backstroke with a time of 52.33 seconds. Earlier in the meet, Fleagle teamed with Garrett Weininger, Keaton McMurray and Mason Baker to break the 200 freestyle relay record with a time of 1:28.60.
Fleagle also picked up a win in the 200 freestyle and McMurray won the 500 freestyle.
St. Marys placed eighth in the girls' team standings and ninth in the boys' standings.
Celina has a final home meet this Saturday with Sidney before getting ready for the postseason.
The Minster girls and Versailles boys claimed MAC bragging rights in the unofficial conference meet hosted by Coldwater at Jay County High School.
Minster edged New Bremen 157-112 for the girls' team title with Fort Recovery third with 100 points. Versailles (70), Coldwater (57), St. Henry (13) and Marion Local (9) rounded out the scoring.
The Wildcat girls were led by Kaitlynn Albers, who won the 200 and 500 freestyles, and Claire Borgerding, who won the 100 freestyle. Minster also took first place in the 400-medley relay. Fort Recovery captured the most event wins as Alexis Bubp won the Individual Medley and 100 butterfly, Cassy Martin won the 50 free and 100 backstroke and Sophie Timmerman won the 100 breaststroke. Fort Recovery also won the 200 freestyle and 200-medley relays.
The Tiger boys tallied 130 points to capture the team title over Fort Recovery, which scored 91 to edge New Bremen's 90 points. Marion Local (78), Coldwater (52), Minster (39) and St. Henry (6) completed the standings.
New Bremen had a strong day. Ezra Ferguson won the Individual Medley and 100 breaststroke, Sam Rutschilling took first in the 200 freestyle and Noah Parlett won the 500 freestyle. Coldwater's Jack Bills won the 100 backstroke and Fort Recovery won the 200 medley and freestyle relays.
Versailles was led by Cole Condon winning the 50 free and 100 butterfly and teammate Clint Morgan won the 100 free. Versailles also won the 400 free relay.