After starting the conference dual meet season 0-2-1, the HRV girls swim team was looking to turn things around against Centennial on Thursday.
With only seven of ten swimmers present, the team knew it wouldn’t be easy. But as luck would have it, Centennial was also a few gallons short, as HRV swam away with a 81-55 win.
“To win with only seven swimmers was huge for us,” senior Emily Baldwin said. “We know the three meets after Central Catholic will be tough, so it was important for us to build some confidence with a win today.”
Baldwin took second in the 100 free and 100 back, and took part in two winning relay teams — the 400 free and 200 medley. Despite being tied after four events, the HRV girls showed their strength in the meet’s second half with strong individual performances and plenty of one-two finishes.
Kelsey Shortt won the 100 back and 50 free; Caitlyn Shortt won the 100 fly and 100 breast; Joyce Yang won the 100 free and placed second in the 200 free; Kelsey Hale won the 500 free and took third in the 200 IM; and Ladora Mitchell took second in the 200 IM and third in the 100 breast.
The best race of the day was between Caitlyn Shortt and Mt. Hood Swim Team teammate Christine Kim in the 100 fly. The two were neck-and-neck the entire way before Shortt pulled away in the final 15 yards to win by four tenths of a second.
“I swam one of my better races,” she said. “It gives me confidence to beat someone who I train with and who’s a senior.
“This win was also big for our team and I think it will help us the rest of the season.”
The boys team continued to roll and now sits at 4-0 in the conference after blowing Centennial out of the water by a score of 134-27. Oliver and Henry Burton led the way for HRV as the Eagles left Centennial in their wake throughout the afternoon.
Oliver Burton won the 100 free and 50 free — the latter in a time of 22.7, which coach Kass Bergstrom called “really fast” compared to the average high-school swimmer.
Henry Burton won his banner event, the 100 back, as well as the 100 fly — an event he entered at the last minute and ended up out-distancing teammates Cody Macmillan and Daniel Chance.
Macmillan later won the 100 breast, while Chance took second in the 50 free. The Jennings trio also had a strong day, as Sean won the 200 free and placed second in the 100 free; Jess finished second in the 200 free and 100 breast; and Chris won the 500 free by almost two pool lengths.
Erik Hidle showed how much he has progressed this season, winning the 200 IM and placing third in the 100 back, while participating on the victorious 200 free relay team.
Another up-and-comer is freshman Louis DeSitter, who took second in the 500 free and gave Hidle a run for his money in the 200 IM. DeSitter also swam on the second-place 200 free relay team with Joseph Yang, Adam Brown and Jeff Fisher.
HRV will take on Central Catholic next Thursday in Hood River and travel to face league champ David Douglas on Jan. 17.