BEND — For the past few weeks, the HRV swim team has been living in the past, competing against teams from their old conference, the Mt. Hood.
But, last Saturday, the swimmers made the most of their first meeting against their new conference, the Intermountain.
HRV won five of six dual meets against Summit, Mountain View and Bend, and also made a distinctive statement to the IMC — “we’re comin’ to get ya’!”
“They even exceeded my expectations,” coach Jane Nichols said. “These guys were so pumped up, and I couldn’t be more pleased with the effort I saw.”
The boys won all three of their meets (100-86 over Summit; 125-72 over Mountain View; and 109-65 over Bend), while the girls won two out of three (109-65 over Bend; 88-82 over Mountain View). The girls’ only loss was to Summit by a score of 141-52.
Leading the way for the girls team were freshmen Nicole Shames and Aerial MacMillan, sophomore Kelsey Hale, and senior team captain Joyce Yang.
For the boys, the top finishes were turned in by the usual suspects — junior Henry Burton and seniors Erik Hidle, Sean Jennings and Cody MacMillan. But they also got a lift from sophomores Jess Jennings, Chris Jennings, Louis DeSitter and Adam Brown.
“Everyone on the team contributed to the end result,” Nichols said. “This meet really boosted our confidence, and should give us plenty to build on after the new year.”
HRV’s next two meets are at Parkrose (Jan. 9) and David Douglas (Jan. 16). The Eagles then swim in Hood River on Jan. 25 for the annual The Dalles Invitational, and host Pendleton and Hermiston on Feb. 4. The Dalles Invite and the Pendleton/Hermiston dual meet are sandwiched by a road meet at Centennial on Jan. 30.
But, regardless of who the opponent is, the swimmers know that whatever work they put in now will help them drown the competition at the Feb. 14 district meet.
“I think we’ll be pretty good once the season gets going,” senior team captain Sean Jennings said at the team’s first meet on Dec. 5. “But we’re really young, especially on the girls team.”
Jennings will likely join Hidle, Burton and MacMillan on the “A” medley relay team at district, as they try to reach state for the second straight year.
“It should be a pretty good year,” MacMillan said. “We have a really fun group of guys and we’re all really driven this year.”
Individually, MacMillan will try to reach state in the 200 IM, while Jennings looks to go in the 100 breast, Hidle in the 50 and 100 free, and Burton in the 100 fly and 100 back.