Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

November 27, 2013

Boys' swimmers, divers hit the water

Brent Glasgow
Hendricks County Flyer

— While the girls’ season commenced a few weeks ago, boys’ swimming and diving gets underway this week. Here’s a preview of this year’s county squads:

Avon

The Orioles had a great 2012-13 season, capped by a ninth-place finish at state, and coach Jon Karr is excited for what lies ahead for this year’s group.

“We have a very solid team this year,” Karr said. “We have more veteran swimmers and more new swimmers than we have ever had. It is a good mix that seems to mesh together pretty well. Hopefully we can put the pieces all together and be pretty successful.”

Top returnees include seniors Christian Lorenz and Greg Sprout, and juniors Grant Lewis and Parks Jones. Sophomore Chandler Bray is expected to be an impact newcomer.

“Hopefully, there will be several others who put themselves in the state picture, too,” Karr said. “We have many kids who are just on the cusp of being superstars.”

Brownsburg

After a memorable 2012-13 campaign, the Bulldogs want more this year.

“We had a breakthrough season last year in a lot of ways,” Brownsburg coach Josh Saylor said. “This year we’re looking to capitalize on that experience we gained and turn it into big things, namely a sectional championship and top-25 finish at the state meet.”

Brownsburg has several very experienced swimmers. Joe Ancel, Kyle Baney, Bradley Green and Vince Partlow all broke school records and swam at state last season. Jared Krug, Donnie Spencer, Jimmy Breedlove, Chad Hale, Diego La Torre and Adam Moll are all key returnees. Transfer Cameron Howard and freshman Frank Schoemer look to have an impact in their first season with the Bulldogs.

Plainfield

The Quakers have plenty of optimism as their 2013-14 campaign gets underway.

“We are always excited to get the season going to see where we are at the start and how we finish in February,” Plainfield coach Chris Cavanaugh said.

Dakota Rhodes and Luke Bridge are seniors who are leaders in the pool, on the deck and in the classroom. Rhodes is the Quakers’ best returning swimmer who should have a good year despite not yet knowing exactly which events he’ll compete in. Diver Aaron Lux nearly qualified for state last season and is focused on getting there this year.

Freshmen Chase Rhodes and Ryan Lennox will contribute, along with a Brandon Lewis, a junior transfer from Decatur Central.

Danville

Numbers are up for the Warriors, whose roster is twice what it was last season.

“I will be able to do much more with meet lineups this season than last,” Danville coach Leah Miller said. “I also have some great leadership returning to show all my newcomers the ropes.”

Returning varsity swimmers are Matt Neilson and Devon Berg, and divers Kasey Hedrick and Eli Alexander are back as well. Neilson is skilled in all freestyle events and looks to elevate his finishes this year. Hedrick and Alexander are both going after school records and top spots in meets.

Wesley Lefler and Mitch Power should be key newcomers. Lefler didn’t swim last season, while Power missed most of his freshman campaign with a broken collarbone.

Tri-West

The Bruins have nine swimmers out, five of them freshmen.

“With only nine boys on your roster, every meet turns into a challenge regardless of the actual opponent, because you can only do so much with that small amount of depth,” Tri-West coach Jeff Sankey said. “Not to mention the fact big meets like conference and sectionals can be very intimidating if it’s the first time you are competing at that level, so that is definitely going to be a big hurdle for us this year.”

Tri-West returns a small but solid core in senior Ryan Richard and juniors Jacob Corbett, Conner Sheets, and Thomas Tintera. Richard expects to do well in the 50 and 100 freestyle, and relishes his new leadership role as the lone senior. Corbett and Sheets have impressed with their work since the summer.

Cascade

The Cadets also start the season with nine swimmers, the smallest team there in some time. Still, Cascade coach Paul Williams said all nine are capable of winning events and will bring their top effort to each meet.

“The final box scores will not fully reflect the talent of this group of guys,” Williams said. “They know that numbers win swim meets, but they also know that being respected by the competition is just as important as a win.”

Cole Dugan, Alex VanWinkle and Griffin Crum will lead the Cadets, and Williams expects both school records and podium finishes at county and sectionals from each. Alexander Mahan is back after taking a year off, and Warren Miller, Spencer Berlin and Alex Cecil also return. Talented freshmen Tim Obrien and Johnny Dunscum will contribute right away.

— Follow Hendricks County Flyer sports writer Brent Glasgow on Twitter @BGlasgow37.