By Justin Whitaker
— Last Saturday, Danville and Tri-West swimming and diving teams competed at the Sagamore Conference meet with great individual performances.
The Danville and Tri-West girls finished fourth and fifth with 256.5 and 232 points respectively.
In boys’ action, the Warriors and Bruins finished sixth and seventh with 255.5 and 230.5 points respectively.
But it was Danville’s Grant Callahan, Sydney Kroll, and Isabelle Mitchell and Tri-West’s Madison Jones and Evan Cooper who took home individual victories.
Callahan was named male swimmer of the meet as he was one of two athletes of the event to win two individual events with victories in the 50 free and 100 breast.
His time of 22.1 in the 50 free was .3 away from his county championship time and .4 away from a state qualifying time. The senior’s 1:00.09 in the 100 breast was less than a second from a state qualifying time.
“Grant is my go-to guy,” first-year Danville coach Leah Miller said. “I can put him in any event and he’s going to chase down someone like it’s his job. He doesn’t like to lose and if someone is in front of him, he ‘ll chase them down.”
The Bruins’ sophomore standout, Jones, was the only other winner of two events at the meet. She was first in the 200 free with a 1:59.58 and set a new school record in the 100 fly with a 1:00.51 in her second win.
Jones was named female athlete of the meet for her superb performance.
Tri-West boasted the male athlete of the meet as well for Cooper’s diving performance.
The freshman dominated diving and won with a school-record score of 409.35. The next closest competitor registered a 293.30.
“As a coach, I think I was most proud of both the athlete of the meet awards going to a swimmer and a diver from my team,” Tri-West coach Jeff Sankey said. “Those awards are voted on by the coaches in the conference and are based not only on athletic ability but also good sportsmanship and attitude, so I think that says a lot about how we present ourselves as a team.”
The other two individual winners were Danville sophomores Kroll and Mitchell.
Kroll won the 500 free with a 5:54.27 and added a fifth in the 100 back with a 1:12.43.
Mitchell won the 100 breast with a 1:10.49 and also finished third in the 100 free.
The performances from the girls were a fitting result for their hard work.
“It’s great,” Miller said. “Their faces after their races said it all. I felt extremely satisfied watching them race extremely well and then seeing that hard work pay off.”
There were also a couple of other girls making waves at the conference meet.
Tri-West senior Sydney McCalley contributed both a second-place in the 100 breast with a 1:14.64 and a fifth-place in the 200 IM as well.
Danville freshman Kendall Startzman tied for fifth in the 50 free with a 28.02.
In the both the girls’ 200 medley and 200 free relays, both schools placed in the top four. The Tri-West team of Erin Cox, McCalley, Madison Jones, and Kaelynn Bechinski placed third in the 200 medley relay with a 2:05.16. The Danville squad of Kroll, Mitchell, Anna Eschbach, and Renae Schuldt finished fourth with a 2:05.49.
In the 200 free relay, Eschbach, Mitchell, Startzman, and Carly Kroll placed third with a 1:53.80 for the Warriors. For the Bruins, the team of McCalley, Bechinski, Jones, and Taylor Krieg placed fourth with a 1:53.88.
In the 400 free relay, the Danville team of Carly and Sydney Kroll, Schuldt, and Drew Armfield placed fourth with a 4:20.91.
There were also multiple notable boys’ performances at the conference meet.
Tri-West senior Garhett Cook placed second in the 100 free with a 51.57 and fourth in the 50 free with a 23.21.
Danville’s Matt Neilson notched a second-place in the 500 free with a 5:17.57 and a third-place in the 200 free with a 1:57.02.
Bruins sophomore Jacob Corbett placed fourth in the 200 IM with a 2:15.88.
Warrior sophomore Tanner Austin scored a fifth-place finish in the 100 fly.
Tri-West sophomore Thomas Tintera placed fifth in the 100 back with a 1:05.05.
Danville junior diver Kasey Hedrick placed fourth with a score of 279.35 and sophomore diver Eli Alexander added a sixth-place with a score of 256.95.
The boys’ 200 free relay event had both county teams placing in the top four. Danville’s quartet of Neilson, Austin Stewart, Devin Berg, and Callahan finished second with a 1:37.92. Tri-West’s team of Ryan Richard, Tintera, Conner Sheets and Braden Jones placed fourth with a 1:41.28.
In the boys’ 200 medley relay event, Danville’s Stewart, Austin, Callahan, and Berg placed fourth with a 1:49.82.