FEDERAL WAY — Swimmers and divers from Wenatchee and Eastmont are set to compete on Friday at the State 4A Meet at the King County Aquatics Center. Wenatchee has 16 girls competing including four adaptive swimmers, while Eastmont has 11 girls competing including one from Cashmere.
Wenatchee Head Coach James Elwyn said things are looking good for the Panthers.
“We should have one of the strongest teams we’ve had. Once we got (freshman) Violet Madson in the 500, it made it so we had someone in every event, which his pretty cool. We’ve had that before in the past couple years, but prior to this current run, we haven’t had it. It’s cool to have someone in every event,” Elwyn said.
The more swimmers in more events mean more points.
“On paper, we should finish fourth or fifth. I think we have enough entries, we can score a few more points and make a push for the top three,” Elwyn said.
Wenatchee is rated fifth in the 200-yard medley relay, sixth in the 200-yard freestyle relay and fifth in the 400-yard freestyle relay. The relays are the most important because they score double points.
Senior Rae Ann Dressel is third in the 50-yard freestyle and sixth in the 100-yard breaststroke. Junior Haily Payne is sixth in the 100-yard backstroke and fourth in the 100-yard butterfly. Junior Brooklyn Dressel is ninth in the 200-yard freestyle and eighth in the 100-yard freestyle.
Elwyn said those girls are important because they are scoring in multiple events.
“Brooklyn being on the edge of being in the top eight is one that needs to be in that top grid for us, for sure. Kathryn Gyde is not in the points in either of her events, so she has a chance to move up and score in both. That’s pretty big,” Elwyn said. “Sophie Black is 16 and Abbey Mott is 14 in the 100 breaststroke. The 100 breaststroke is really close so they are close to being in the top eight. If one or both steps up, that would be huge for us.”
In diving, sophomore Kelsey McKay is sixth while senior Emily Brault is 11th.
“Our two divers are seeded pretty well, but diving seeding is questionable because everyone is scored by different judges at their own district meet. If both can be top eight, that is big as well,” he said.
Eastmont is competing in the 200 medley relay and 400 freestyle relay. Wildcat Head Coach Darcy Bruggman said she would like to see her relays in the top 15. The one to watch for Eastmont is junior Emma Knott.
She is seeded fifth in the 50-yard freestyle and ninth in the 100-yard freestyle.
“Emma has a great shot and breaking two school records for 50 free and 100 free. We’ll put a little more on her plate. The record board is down now for remodeling, so we want to set those two records so it’s there when we put it back up,” Bruggman said. “It will be good to see her swim and get in that top eight. She is seeded really well.”
Eastmont has two freshmen divers, Kieumy Huber, rated 18 and Valerie McCray, rated 19.
“It’s pretty cool to have those freshmen step right in and step right up,” Bruggman said. “Our goal is to get into the finals and sprint fast. Then, take that next step on Saturday. Friday’s goal is to get to the finals.”
Elwyn said he’s expecting his swimmers to lay down some good times.
“It’s a different kind of environment. It’s more electric. There is more hype. It’s easy to get up for it. Historically, our girls have gotten up for it. If we do well on Friday, that will tell us where we will end up on Saturday,” he said.
The State 4A Swim and Dive Meet is Friday and Saturday at the King Country Aquatics Center in Federal Way.