It continues to be a season of firsts for Eaton’s swimming program.
Kelsey Gregory will be the first female swimmer to visit the C.T. Branin Natatorium in Canton for the Ohio State swim meet.
Gregory qualified for the 200 freestyle at the state meet and she has the chance to improve on that when she swims her preliminaries on Thursday, Feb. 20.
“She is going to be doing more taper to get ready for her swim in Canton and hoping she can take her time even lower with the additional rest,” Coach Dave Montgomery said.
Gregory qualified to district in two events, the 100-meter butterfly with at time of 1 minute, 02.80 seconds; and the 200 freestyle with a time of 2:02.14. She swam her 200-freestyle in a record time of 1:59.42.
“Kelsey was very excited about finally breaking the two minute mark in the 200 freestyle and she said she felt good about the swim,” Montgomery said. “She said her turns felt slow and did not come off the wall like she wanted to and when you swim a 100 you are doing 3 turns and they can really affect your time if you are not hitting them.”
She went on to swim her 100-butterfly, coming in with at time of 1:02.80 and was hoping to break the minute mark in her swim. She went a 1:01.82 in her swim.
On the boys side, Montgomery said they did not have the finish they were hoping for in the individual and relay events.
In the 200-freestyle, consisting of Mason McCargish, Drew Pool, Mickey McCargish and Trey Gregory, they were 15th in the state coming into district with at time of 1:35.57 and they did what they needed to do and took their time down to 1:33.73 but fell short by 1.04 seconds to make a trip to state.
In the 200-medley, the same group of boys came in with a time of 1:45.56 and improved their time to a season low of 1:44.18, but fell short by .26 seconds from making it to state.
The 400-freestyle relay, consisting of Andrew Ferguson, Jacob Liddy, Max Lawson and Blake Clabaugh were disqualified for leaving early.
“We had practice every night for an hour working on relay starts but one thing you cannot plan for is the urge and nerves to leave early to catch your relay backup. One thing good for all these boys is they are underclassman and I expect to see them back next year swimming for a chance to go back to state,” Montgomery said.
In the boys’ individual events, McCargish came in with a time of 59.62 in the 100-butterfly and finished with at time of 57.88, a season best for him.
Trey Gregory came in with a time of 24.04 in the 50-freestyle, and swam a 23.74.
Drew Pool swam two individual events. He came in with a 200-freestyle time of 1:51.74 and swam a 1:52.05, he also swam the 100-freestyle coming in with at time of 51 seconds and he took his time down to 50.25.
“Drew talked about his turns not being good on his 200 swim and felt he they could have been better,” Montgomery said.
McCargish also qualified for two events. He swam the 200-individual medley coming in with a time of 2:08.80 and swam it in a school record time of 2:07.44, he also swam the 100-butterfly coming in with a time of 54.48 and swimming it in a time of 54.82.
“The 200 IM is very close to the 100-butterfly and with very little time between events it does take a lot out of Mason to swim them like that. Mason is a sophomore so we have time to make some adjustments to allow him to swim another event that could take him to state in two events,” Montgomery said.
McCargish also set a new school record with a 50 freestyle swim with at time 22.65.
“All-in-all, the kids really swam well and none of them should feel bad for any swims they did at districts and sectionals. The entire team continued to improve over the season and I am very proud of where everyone ended up. One of my team goals for this team at the beginning of the season was to get at least nine kids to districts and they achieve that through their hard work and steady improvement over the season,” Montgomery said.