ROCKY RIVER, Ohio – News and notes from Rocky River Boys’ and Girls’ Swimming & Diving: the first edition of “Lane Lines” for the 2018-19 season …
The swashbuckling, splash-and-dash Pirates opened their season with twin wins over Westlake on Nov. 28. The Rocky River boys’ squad defeated the Demons, 110-73, while the girls’ team prevailed by a final of 98-82. The opening-night meet was held at Rocky River Pool. Three nights later, on Dec. 1, the two Pirate teams nearly pulled off a sweep at the Bay Village High School-hosted Rocket Relays. The girls’ team finished first in a field of nine; the River boys’ placed second, a mere point behind champion Mayfield.
Senior Tristan Abood jump-started his season with fine performances in both meets. Abood won the boys’ 100-yard freestyle and 100-yard breaststroke races and figured in two winning relays (200 free, 400 free) against Westlake. In the Rocket Relays, the 2018 district qualifier (100 breast) was a member of all three Pirate quartets earning gold on the night (200 free, 200 breast, 400 free).
On the girls’ side, Morgan Schuld picked up where her 2018 state-qualifier (100 backstroke) season left off. On Wednesday against Westlake, Schuld won the 100 free and the 100 back while figuring as part of two winning Pirate relays (200 medley, 400 free). In Saturday’s relay meet, she was a part of two first-place finishes (200 medley, 500 free). As captains, Schuld, her sister Mackenzie, Katherine Burgess, Peyton Spearry and Anna Skapoulas were credited by coaches in having the Pirates motivated and ready to perform in week No. 1.
MEDAL COUNT: In the Westlake meet, the River boys’ team took first place in 11-of-12 events. The boys won 3-of-8 events in the nine-team relay meet hosted by Bay. … On the girls’ side, Rocky River took gold in 9-of-12 vs. the Demons. In the Rocket Relays, the Pirates bested the field in 4-of-8 races.
NOTABLE: Against Westlake, the freestyle sprints were a fountain of youth-ful production for Head Coach Mark Harris and the Pirates. Freshman Braden Devorace clocked in with third- and second-place finishes in the 50- and 100-yard freestyle events. The Devorace performance in those two races netted seven points for Rocky River. … Another newcomer, sophomore Nathan Claypoole has shaved time in all his events since preseason time trials. … Dylan Smith and Igle Sulce logged personal bests on Wednesday.
QUOTABLE: “Overall, the guys and girls really came together as a team this week. We started a few new traditions that have help the group understand that our goal not so much the wins but to make them better people.” – Boys’ Head Coach Mark Harris
FAST FROSH: Newcomers Hannah Burgess and Ella Russell have been early contributors on the girls’ side. Against Westlake, Russell took first in the 100 fly with a time of 1:03.36, some 10-1/2 seconds ahead of the nearest pursuer. Both freshman swimmers were involved in gold-winning relays on Saturday.
SWASHBUCKLING EFFORT: Sophomore Alex Stevovich placed sixth in the girls’ 100 free in Wednesday’s meet. Stevovich hit the wire with a time of 1:14.13, dropping 14 seconds from her previous best in the event.
ON DECK: The Pirates will open Great Lakes Conference action with a Tuesday-evening home meet against the Normandy Invaders. On Saturday, Rocky River will compete in the Cleveland State University-hosted Viking Invitational.
# # # river # # #