Zeph girls return a solid group
When the new swim season commences, the Whitehall girls will have some solid swimmers back in the fold, and that will hopefully serve as springboard for another strong season.
Last year the girls finished 12-4 and qualified seven swimmers for the district tourney. Head coach Pete Rile said that graduation took its toll, so they may be experiencing a bit of a rebuilding year. However, that’s a dilemma that can be mitigated by their numbers, a figure that’s at 25 as they ramp up for the new season.
“That’s good; it gives you a lot to work with,” said Rile.
Returning for the Zephs will be senior Madelyn Kutney, a district qualifier last year. Another returning district participant is junior Lindsay Solderitch. Sophomore Rachel Dolan was also part of that district mix and should be another strong contender to duplicate that feat this season.
Junior Lexi Bartosh was another district qualifier and will be another contender to match last year’s district appearance.
The Zephyrs will also feature junior Emily Thomas, a swimmer with a lot of varsity experience. Senior Ella Holmes is another returning vet who’s a proven point producer in her events.
Also contributing this season are seniors Emily Haggerty, Sabrina Kidulic, Hannah Miller and Kayla Yandrasitz. Juniors who’ll make a splash include Yasir Herrara and Briahan Raub. Sophomores in the mix are Tyana Frasier, Sandra Neameh, Alexandria Prentice and Grace Urick. Freshman contributors this season include Leslie Anglada, Neave Doyle, Aolani Febo-Agosto, Beniel Flores, Leasa Ortiz, Alexis Quach, Nadia Shahda, Brianna Torres and Megan Wallitsch.
Rile characterized them as a good, solid team. He said it’s always possible to have a breakout swimmer who qualifies for states, but as of right now, they’re a team that has a number of swimmers with district potential.
“It’s a good, solid kind of team,” said Rile. “They can do the strokes; we can fill every event.”
Whitehall lost a number of close matches last season, with Freedom a prime example, and Riles believes the swimmers on this year’s roster can use that experience to take it up a notch.
“They’re going to have to do it,” he said.
He said this season’s success hinges on a number of factors, most notably having swimmers stepping up, giving some extra effort, and that should translate into shaving seconds off their times. He said that the potential is there and it’s in their hands.
As it stands now, he would like to get about the same number of district qualifiers as they had last season. He would also like to see them continue to post a winning record, something they’ve been able to do the last 10 years.
“We’re hoping to maintain that,” he said.
After it all shakes out, Rile hopes that they can hold everyone together and become a good team.