The Juneau-Douglas High School swim team continued its strong start to the season this weekend in Ketchikan with top-three performances from both the girls' and boys' teams.
The Crimson Bears boys finished in first place in Saturday's meet, one day after a disqualification in Friday's 200-yard medley relay left JDHS in third place overall behind Petersburg and Ketchikan, respectively.
"The boys had a little difficulty Friday and came in third place because they had a relay that was disqualified for a false start," Crimson Bears coach Kathrin Millhorn said. "But (Saturday) the boys won by a few points and there are some boys from Petersburg that are going to provide a little competition for us this year."
Millhorn said the boys' team was not at full strength after a few swimmers did not travel with the squad for the meet.
"The boys that we did have did a fantastic job," Millhorn said.
Crimson Bears boys winners from the weekend include Nathan Messing and Cody Schick, as well as the 400-yard freestyle relay team of Messing, Schick, Tatsu Monkman and Calder Otsea.
The Juneau-Douglas boys finished Friday in third place with a team score of 74 points, while Petersburg and Ketchikan placed first and second overall with 92 and 76 points, respectively. But on Saturday the Bears boys avoided anymore wrongdoings and took first place in the second meet of the weekend with a team score of 89 points. Petersburg's 82 points were good enough for second place overall while Ketchikan came in third with a team score of 62 points.
On the girls' side, the Bears had a difficult time with the homestanding Ketchikan Kings, who grabbed first place on both days while Juneau-Douglas finished in second place just ahead of Sitka on both Friday and Saturday.
"The girls did great both days. They had some great swims and got some best times, but the Ketchikan team won by a lot because they have numbers," Millhorn said.
The Juneau-Douglas girls' team finished with an overall score of 64 and 72 points on Friday and Saturday, respectively, but the Ketchikan girls dominated with scores of 146 and 123, respectively.
Gabriella Muzilli won the girls' 500-yard freestyle both days for the Crimson Bears, and the Juneau-Douglas girls' 200-yard medley relay team of Muzilli, Anna Gonwa-Ramonda, Elsa Robinson and Cassie Anderson won the event on Saturday.
"Gabby had a great 500 swim two days in a row, and she went two seconds faster (Saturday) than she did on Friday," Millhorn said. "And Claressa (Ullmayer) had a good 500 swim today, although I think she can go even faster.
"Evan Norman looked pretty good and looks like he's coming along, and some of the other kids swam some events that were definitely not strong points for them, but they all looked fantastic."
The weekend's meet also marked the first time the Juneau-Douglas dive team entered competition this season.
Samantha Sharp grabbed first place in the girls' 1-meter dive on both days with scores of 194.55 and 170.45, respectively, while twin sister Emily Sharp took third place on Friday and second on Saturday. Peter Bellagh took second place both days in the boys' 1-meter dive.
"Our divers did good today - Peter is looking good on the board and the girls looked great," Millhorn said. "I'm hoping what will happen is they'll get more precise with a little more practice since it was their first meet of the season."
Competitors had six dives each on both days but will have 11 dives in the next meet, the same number they'll have later in the season during the regional and, potentially, state meets.
The Thunder Mountain Falcons girls' team finished fifth overall on both days with 24 and 18 points, respectively, while the boys' team scored 10 points Friday and 17 Saturday, good enough for sixth place ahead of Metlakatla.
Notable swimmers for the Falcons included Calvin Walsh, who finished fourth in Saturday's boys' 200 IM and 100 free, as well as Anna Bullock, who had a fourth-place finish in the girls' 50 free on Saturday. Thunder Mountain coaches were not available for comment.
Both schools' dive teams will be in action next weekend at Petersburg before Juneau hosts a meet Sept. 24-25.