Bears girls swim well in final tuneup

Posted: Tuesday, October 12, 2010

In their final tuneup before the Region V swim meet in Petersburg, the Crimson Bears wanted to build some experience for some of their younger swimmers over the weekend.

Juneau-Douglas sent five swimmers from the boys' team and 10 from the girls' squad to compete in Sitka on Friday and Saturday before many of the Bears give their bodies a little extra rest time.

The Crimson Bears girls' team finished in second place on both days with scores of 72 and 83 points, respectively. The boys' squad, which only featured five swimmers over the weekend, finished with 28 points Friday and 21 on Saturday, good enough for sixth and fifth place, respectively.

The Thunder Mountain boys' team made nice strides over the weekend, finishing in fourth place on Friday after scoring 40 points. Freshman Calvin Walsh finished first overall in the boys' 200-yard freestyle on Friday with a time of 1:58.31, and Kymberly Tuner grabbed second for the Falcons' girls' team, leading them to a fifth-place finish with 29 points on Friday and 26 on Saturday. The boys' team finished sixth on Saturday with 19 points.

"The meet went pretty well," JDHS coach Kathrin Millhorn said in an e-mail. "The athletes are tired and looking forward to our last week of hard work before we begin our rest cycle."

The Juneau-Douglas girls had several strong performances over the weekend, including a first- and second-place finish by their two relay teams in Saturday's girls' 200 medley relay. The Bears A team, including freshmen Haley Mertz, Addie Gonwa-Ramonda and Savannah Cayce, as well as senior Gabi Muzilli, finished in first with a time of 2:01.02, and the B team - sophomore Julianna Lukshin, junior Kerry Barto and seniors Elsa Robinson and Anna Gonwa-Ramonda - finished eight seconds off the lead in second place.

Mertz also finished in first place in Saturday's girls' 100 backstroke with a time of 1:05.16, and Robinson won the girls' 100 breaststroke in 1:16.54.

Crimson Bears senior Peter Bellagh won the 1-meter diving competition on Friday with a score of 181.90, but there was no diving competition on Saturday due to concern over the safety of the diving board. But the divers did enter other events during the meet Saturday.

Though the Region V meet is approaching quickly, Millhorn said this meet was valuable to her younger swimmers.

"(It) was a good learning experience for our freshman athletes," she said. "It was their only travel meet this season, and combined with the home meet, they now have a taste of what the high school meet format is like."

Now both schools have set their sights on what's ahead, and there is sure to be plenty of preparation before heading to Petersburg Oct. 29-30.

"We will be deciding on our Region V traveling team this week and starting to work toward our final few weeks," Millhorn said. "The excitement is building and we are looking forward to great things."

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