Wolverines diving into another swim season | SierraSun.com

Wolverines diving into another swim season

Photo by Sylas Wright/Sierra SunTruckee sophomore swimmer Cierra Auldridge leaps off the starting block at practice last week.

The Truckee High swim team has added a group of newcomers this year, and all its members are pumped to dive in the pool.

“This is the most enthusiastic group I’ve ever had, which is good,” said sixth-year swim coach Carey Parlette. “There are a lot of new swimmers, a lot who are completely new to swimming.”

And while the ratio of boys to girls is 12 to 22, that’s a large squad of boys compared to teams of the past.

“There’s definitely more boys, that’s for sure,” Hayley Howell, a fourth-year senior and co-team captain (along with Lora Lashbrook), said of this year’s group. “We’ve had a shortage of boys. (This year) it’s a well-rounded group of people.”

Returning sophomore Arek O’Connell, who Parlette says has a good chance to place among the top eight swimmers in league at the end of the season and is likely the fastest Wolverine, likes the makeup of the 2006 team.

“There’s a lot more enthusiasm than last year,” said O’Connell, who also plays football in the fall. “Already everybody is excited to get back in the pool. And there are a lot more guys, which is a big improvement from last year.”

Another improvement, according Parlette, is the addition of two assistant coaches, Brian Bellowitch and Aaron Browning.

“This is the first time I’ve had two assistant coaches,” she said. And with only 13 returning swimmers from last year, the work ethic of this year’s team is also welcome.

“It’s exciting that so many kids who aren’t experienced are willing to work this hard and compete and are brave enough to come out ” because they’re swimming close to about a mile a day. The good guys are doing close to three miles,” Parlette said, adding that she has also been holding optional workouts starting at 6 a.m.

While other Truckee spring sports teams struggle to find practice space, the swim team ” with its heated indoor facility at the high school ” doesn’t have to worry about lingering winters.

“It’s a little weird thinking you’re half naked swimming in water when there’s snow outside,” O’Connell said on the subject of early-season practices.

As far as goals this year: “I hope we have a good season and everybody stays enthusiastic,” O’Connell said.

Howell would like to see the team match the success it has had in previous years.

“Hopefully we’ll get first in league,” she said. “That’s our goal. We have the past three years, so hopefully we’ll keep that up.”

Truckee had its first meet against Damont Ranch on March 10.

The girls won easily ” because Damonte Ranch had only a few swimmers ” while the boys out-swam Damonte’s squad of eight by 10 points.

Parlette said she was impressed with the early-season relay splits by Bradley Cabral (29.8 seconds in the 50 Freestyle) and Teague Mason (27.7 seconds in the 50 Freestyle).

Arek O’Connell pulled his weight by swimming both the 500 Freestyle and the 200 Individual Medley ” the toughest individual events ” as well as two relays. He qualified for zones in both individual events.

Parlette said she was also impressed with the results of Mary Silvas (5:15:8 in the 500 Free) and Jen Bohleman, who posted a personal best in 100 breaststroke in 1:35.6.

“Overall, the team made a great effort for only having been in the water for two weeks,” Parlette said. “I’m looking forward to a great season.”

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