BARRINGTON – Local swimmers age 18 and younger competed at the Illinois Swimming Winter Regional Championships on Friday through Sunday at Barrington High School for a chance to qualify for the state meet.
Swimmers qualified during the season to meet the regional time standards and have one last opportunity to make the state standards. Most swimmers who already had state cuts did not compete at regionals.
The state meet will be March 13 through 16 at the University of Illinois-Chicago.
Woodstock Dolphins coach Mike Kavanaugh said the regional was a good opportunity for swimmers to try to make state cuts or just be able to compete in a big meet.
"For swimmers who don't have state times, this is their championship meet," Kavanaugh said.
Kavanaugh said the Dolphins are building their program on some simple principals – hard work, willingness to always do your best and a commitment to go above and beyond what you think you are capable of. It started during the summer season with coach George Keenan and continued during the winter to create a unified approach.
"We're building on the success we had over the summer," Kavanaugh said. "George and I share very similar values and philosophies."
Qualifying for state at regionals for Woodstock was Kacper Cebula in the 100-yard breaststroke.
Sage YMCA Piranhas coach Ed Richardson said his team used the regional meet as a benchmark for how well they were swimming. As a Y team they will not compete at the Illinois Swimming state meet but will compete in the YMCA state meet at the end of the month.
"I told our kids we wanted to come here and compete," RIchardson said. "I want you competing [at Barrington] so we can see what we have."
Richardson said his team was not tapered for regionals but still had some good times.
"We've had a bunch of lifetime best times," Richardson said. "It really surprised me because I know how I've been working them."
Making the state time standard for Sage were Cole Seeger (200 breaststroke) and Ashlynn Baker (500 freestyle).
The Piranhas are eagerly awaiting the opening of their new pool in Crystal Lake. The facility will be an eight-lane, 25-yard competition pool with elevated spectator seating for up to 350. Richardson said the old pool will remain, which will provide a great warm-up pool when hosting meets.
Other area swimmers making state cuts at Barrington are:
Dundee Dolphins: Atzi Gomez (500 free); Makaylin Monasterio (200 backstroke)
McHenry Marlins: Carly Wolf (200 breaststroke, 50 freestyle, 100 breaststroke, 200 IM); Megan Frost (200 backstroke); Kaitlyn Fogo (100 breaststroke); Trey Schopen (50 freestyle, 200 backstroke); Mitch Robek (200 backstroke)
Other area swimmers: Bryan Haage (50 freestyle); Rachel Skoog (100 breaststroke)
Sunday's afternoon session results were not available Sunday evening.
• Rob Smith is a sports writer for the Northwest Herald. Write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org