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Cambridge Swimmers Come in 5th at Spartan Relay Invitational Sat. Feb. 1st

Cambridge Swimmers Come in 5th at Spartan Relay Invitational Sat. Feb. 1st

After being snowed out of team practice for the last three days of the season, the Bears came together on Saturday Feb. 1st to travel to Marietta to compete in the Spartan Relay Invitational. All events were relay events, so without individual events the team felt significantly less pressure and enjoyed the opportunity to have fun in their last whole-team meet. Out of 11 teams present, the Bears took fifth place with their girls' team score, boys' team score and combined team score.

The meet was set up with the traditional relays, which included the 200-medley relay (backstroke, breast stroke, butterfly, and freestyle), the 200-freestyle relay, and the 400-freestyle relay, but the meet also included non-traditional relays. Among those non-traditional relays were the 200-backstroke relay, 200-breaststroke relay, 200-butterfly relay, and even the 200-freestyle relay with each leg as only 25-yards so the relay team was made up of eight swimmers instead of four. There was even an event with each member of the team swimming a different length (25-50-75-100). With the unusual events set up, many swimmers participated in relays for strokes they don't normally swim. It was a great way to end the season with so many no-pressure swims.
 

While the day was fun for all, there were still some very impressive swims by the Bears. The boys' A-team in the 400-freestyle relay (Austin Daniel, Ethan Nalwasky, Jake Todd, Matt Hogan) beat their season-best time by three seconds to improve their seed-time going into the state meet next week. The four boys, with their impressive splits, solidified their place to compete in that event on Friday at Georgia Tech.

For the boys' 200-freestyle relay, a couple of swimmers stood out. Alex Mahler had an impressive split of 24.93, Matt Hogan with 24.8, and Bryce Jewell with 24.57. Sean McGinty, previously on the roster as an alternate for the state meet, proved himself on Saturday as a true contender for the Bears with his split of 24.95. He will join the previously mentioned three boys at state meet prelims in the relay. Teammates Jake Todd and Austin Daniel will be alternates for the event so they can rest up for their individual events in the 500-freestyle and 100-backstroke.
 

Another impressive swim was by the girls' team in the same event. The A-team (Angela Ho, Ashley Dale Henslee, Katie Durden, Sydney Swenton) had solid swims by all, but Durden and Swenton in particular stood out. Durden swam a season-best split of 1:00.84 and will be the anchor to this relay on Friday at Georgia Tech. Swenton, previously an alternate for the relay, took the place of Lauren Holliday, who is suffering from a shoulder injury. Swenton stepped up and swam an impressive 1:02.62, a best-time split for the season. The same four girls will compete for the Bears in the 200-freestyle relay. The four girls will train next week to recover from the days off due to snow to get ready for state. Joining them will be Emma Gustafsson as an alternate in both events.

The most memorable event of the day was the senior relay at the end of the meet. Dressed in crazy costumes and with random props, seniors from all of the participating teams took to the pool in a relay. The Bears, only having two seniors (Maggie McGinty and Bryce Jewell) decided to do the relay on their own as they ran back and forth across the pool deck so they could hand off the relay to one another. With a graceful belly-flop by McGinty and cannonball by Jewell, the seniors went out in style. The team will certainly miss these two very important figures on the team.
 

The Bears have had a decorated season. There was not a single person on the team that didn't experience growth and improvement. Nothing reflects the growth of this team more than the school records. As of this past weekend, only three school records from last year remain. With each year, the program and team is getting stronger and that is a reflection of every member of the team. School records and state cuts are not made simply by those that swam the event. The victory is shared by all members of the team who stood at the end of the lane and cheered on their teammates and those that motivated and encouraged their teammates in practice to train harder and swim faster. The team will share in the success of those moving on to Georgia Tech next weekend.

Below are the events the Bears will compete in next weekend at Georgia Tech with their state meet seeding:

Girls' 200-Medley Relay (Seeded 23rd out of 53 entries)
Girls' 200-Freestyle Relay (Seeded 37th out of 57)
Girls' 400-Freestyle Relay (Seeded 31st out of 41)
Girls' 100-Breaststroke – Maggie McGinty (Seeded 21st)

Boys' 200-Freestyle Relay (Seeded 55th out of 64)
Boys' 400-Freestyle Relay (Seeded 27th out of 46)
Boys' 500-Freestyle – Jake Todd (Seeded 28th), Ethan Nalwasky (Seeded 39th), Austin Daniel (Seeded 46th)
Boys' 100-Backstroke – Jake Todd (Seeded 41st), Erek Humm (Seeded 48th), Austin Daniel (Seeded 52nd)

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