SYRACUSE – There wasn’t any big ceremony or hoopla surrounding opening day in the Wawasee Natatorium for the Wawasee girls swim team. Just business as usual.
Coming off one of the finest seasons in program history, Wawasee kept its approach simple in a 149-29 dismantling of DeKalb Saturday morning.
Wawasee swept 10 of the 11 swim events and had the only two divers active in a total overwhelming of DeKalb. Wawasee had eight swimmers take part in at least one win, six of which won an individual event.
Kayla Hershberger, Paige Miller and Bre Robinson all were part of four wins. Hershberger took the 100 free (58.83) and the backstroke (1:08.71), Robinson the individual medley (2:11.70) and the butterfly (1:00.17), Paige Miller the 200 free (2:01.50) and the 500 free (5:20.79).
Kendra Miller grabbed the win in the 50 free (26.87) and Shelby Adams the breaststroke (1:14.89). Hershberger, Adams, Robinson and Kendra Miller won the medley relay (2:01.31), Hershberger, Adams, Robinson and Paige Miller took the 400 free relay (3:50.51) and Kendra Miller, Paige Miller, Anna Park and Mikala Mawhorter claimed the 200 free relay at 1:47.63.
Hannah Rhoades and Riley Kunkle were the two lone divers working Saturday, with Rhoades at 153.50, over 50 points higher than her first-day total a season ago, and Kunkle a career-best 130.75.
“My divers did phenomenal, I was really proud of how well they did,” said Wawasee head coach Julie Robinson. “They came out and did much better than I had expected for the first meet.
“We just had a lot of kids step up and see what they could do. Today was more about having fun and seeing where everyone was at.”
Robinson noted the meet wasn’t about much more than getting back into the swing of things for a lot of her swimmers, and trying to work out some bugs. She noted swimmers like freshman Lizzy Brugh and sophomore Meghan Fretz had good first meets, Fretz missing most of her freshman year to injury.
Brugh swam a 29-second leg of the 200 free relay and Fretz’s 29.23 in the 50 free both stuck out to the head coach. Even with DeKalb’s Nicole Gillespie sneaking past Fretz for third in the 50 free at 28.72, Robinson wasn’t too worried about the standing results.
“We were looking to see what some of the kids who may not have a lot of meet experience could do,” Robinson said. “Some of the kids we weren’t really worried about times, but more of the technical side with strokes and turns.”
Wawasee (1-0) will next swim in a girls only meet Nov. 25 at East Noble. The boys and girls will then host Warsaw Nov. 29 to not only open the boys season, but the Northern Lakes Conference schedule as well.