Members of the men’s team with coach Shingler and their runner up trophy. This is one of the men’s team’s highest finishes ever. (Photo courtesy of Amanda Ray)
This past Saturday at Triangle Aquatic Center, the Pride’s swim and dive team competed in a competitive eastern regional championship. The men finished second, while the women finished fifth, in a meet that came down to the last relay.
The women, who were the three-time reigning champs, finished in fifth. Plagued by the loss of last year’s strong senior class, they still have some rebuilding to do. Regardless, they qualified all three relays for states, along with two individual qualifiers: Amanda Ray (100 fly and 500 free) and Kate Speershneider (100 breastroke). On the diving side, Ashton Zuburg continued her dominance, winning and remaining undefeated in her high school career. Other states-qualifying divers include Quincey Storie and Lauren Hargnet.
The men’s team, however, finished in second. Coming down to the very last relay, the men surpassed Millbrook by one point to secure their highest finish in recent memory. Narrowly missing a state qualification in the first relay, the boys were off to a rocky start. Their meet began to turn around when Seth Brodnick won the 200 freestyle by 0.15 seconds, achieving a personal best time in the process. He also finished fifth in the 500 freestyle, securing another individual state qualification. “I was very happy with my swims at regionals. Going into it my goal was to place top three in the 200 free, and getting first was a great moment,” said Brodnick, a junior on the team.
The men’s team also had two relays qualify (200 free relay and 400 free relay), as well as many individual qualifiers. The individual qualifiers include Seth Brodnick (200 free and 500 free), Alex Smyre (50 free and 100 fly), Andrew Stepanian (100 free), Connor Blackburn (500 free), and Mason Scott (100 back). In diving, two men qualified for states: Jack Biggs and Luke Yardley.
“I think the boys having much more depth then in years before gave us lots of opportunities at regionals to score, leading to our success,” said Brodnick
With a successful regionals in the books, the Pride swim and dive team is gearing up for states. The divers compete at Koury Natatorium in Chapel Hill, on Thursday, February 6 at 8:00 am. The swimmers compete at Triangle Aquatic Center on Friday, February 7. Prelims start at 9:00 am and finals start at 4:45 pm.