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Eagle swimming shines at home invitational

January 25, 2006

The Hood River Aquatic Center felt, from the inside, like a crowded can of sardines on Saturday. In all, 223 girls and 175 boys — from 14 teams across the state — packed into the pool for the 2006 The Dalles-Wahtonka High School Invitational Swim Meet.

With the pool surrounded on all sides by coaches, officials, fans, parents, lifeguards, photographers and hundreds of high school swimmers, from schools as far west as Scappoose and as far east as Baker, the Hood River Valley High School girls’ team swam to a third place overall finish and the boys to a fourth place finish.

Sherwood and La Grande high schools took first and second place in both divisions.

“Our kids are just amazing,” coach Jane Nichols said about the Eagles. “The girls had 23 best times out of 43 swims and the boys had 30 best times out of 69 swims, which is just awesome. They are finally learning how to swim distance races, which you have to learn how to finish with nothing left. Our swimmers are thinking, and that’s great.”

With all the action, interaction and distraction at a meet of that scale, swimmers have to learn how to focus and concentrate on their events no matter what their surroundings.

“The kids seem to be getting the idea of what it is they are really doing out there,” Nichols said. “The kids have to know how to get ready for the races. They have to have the right physical and mental tools.”

The team will take to the pool this week to prepare for Saturday’s Hood River Invitational, which will bring another barrage of teams, including several from the Intermountain Conference, to the Aquatic Center for another all-day event.

Meet results:

Overall team —

Girls: 3rd of 11

Boys: 4th of 11

Individual highlights:

200 medley —

Mackenzie Baxter 6th

Sara DeSitter 14th

Peter Debbaut 3rd

200 freestyle —

Erin Jones 1st

Nichole Shames 8th

Sarah Lee 10th

Jordan Phillips 10th

Kory Harding 11th

Kyle Donahue 12th

Matt Hale 16th

200 IM —

Ariel MacMillan 6th

Sara DeSitter 13th

Peter Debbaut 3rd

50 freestyle —

Kari Hidle 4th

Fatima Valle 8th

Ellery Yount 21st

Zed Debbaut 2nd

Kory Harding 12th

100 butterfly —

Megan Flem 11th

Daniela Huizar 21st

Peter Debbaut 4th

100 freestyle —

Fatima Valle 8th

Kari Hidle 11th

Nichole Shames 14th

Alyssa Johnisee 14th

Cory Coxen 6th

Henry Hunt 14th

Matt Winkel 23rd

500 freestyle —

Erin Jones 1st

Sarah Lee 10th

Devon Beveridge 15th

Jordan Phillips 5th

Matt Hale 7th

200 freestyle relay —

Girls 3rd

Boys 5th

100 backstroke —

Kendra Mohar 19th

Ellery Young 20th

Matt Winkle 12th

100 breaststroke —

Cory Coxen 5th

Zak Flaming 18th

400 freestyle relay —

Girls 3rd

Boys 4th

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