Juneau-Douglas High School junior swimmer Julie DiCostanzo took second in the 100-yard backstroke Saturday and won two races on Friday as the Crimson Bears opened the swimming and diving season in Sitka.
The Crimson Bears' girls team won Friday with a score of 102.5 as Sitka placed second and Ketchikan took third. On Saturday, Ketchikan won the meet with Sitka and JDHS finishing second and third.
"The girls, I thought they swam real well," JDHS coach John Wray said. "We had a number of kids do personal bests. We only brought eight girls total."
DiCostanzo won the 50- and 100-yard freestyle races on Friday to pace the Bears.
"Her times were very similar to what she was swimming last year," Wray said. "She also ran some great relay legs today. She swam two relays and they were outstanding."
Another JDHS girl who boasted a solid weekend was sophomore Amber Kelly.
Kelly won the 100-yard butterfly on Saturday and posted three personal record times over the weekend.
On the boys side, Wray brought just four swimmers to the meet and said he thought they swam well.
Juneau-Douglas swimmers Aaron Rausch, Travis Blair, Jon Wendel and Japanese exchange student Yuichi Soto managed 33 points on Friday, finishing third to second-place Ketchikan (69 points) and first-place Sitka (150 points).
On Saturday, Sitka won with 159 points, Ketchikan was second with 75 points and Juneau had 30 points.
"For the boys we brought I thought they swam well," Wray said. "We brought one exchange student who just started swimming and three boys who did not swim year-round. They've been in the water for three weeks and a couple of them had personal bests. They were well ahead of where they were last year."
While the Bears' foursome performed well, the Wolves made a statement that they might be the boys' team to beat in Southeast Alaska.
"Sitka is definitely the strongest power, just quantity and quality wise, in the region this year," Wray said. "They're probably a favorite for the state championships."
Look in Monday's edition for complete results from over the weekend.
Tim Nichols, sports editor, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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