Western’s boys and girls swimming and diving teams made a splash Tuesday in their return to action following the winter break, which was extended a week by the recent snowstorm and sub-zero conditions.
The Panthers swept visiting Hamilton Heights, taking a 134-46 win on the boys side and a 140-43 win on the girls side.
“The [extra] week off was a double-edged sword,” Western coach Brad Bennett said, noting it provided a mental break ahead of the season’s stretch drive. “It allowed them to refocus on their priorities and spend time thinking about what they want to accomplish.”
In the boys meet, junior Connor Hill, senior Asa Sheffer, junior Matt Duke and sophomore Glen Brown provided a highlight by winning the 200 freestyle relay in a school-record time of 1:31.81.
“The former record was set in ‘01 and that time was 1:32.21,” Bennett said. “They were within a couple tenths of that once early in the season. They kind of left no doubt in breaking it [Tuesday]. They didn’t shatter it, but it was legitimate.”
Bennett noted Nick Taylor, Chris Groves, Bryce Hughes and Ted Brown Jr. held the former record.
Individually in Tuesday’s meet, Glen Brown won the 200 free (1:47.42) and 100 breaststroke (1:02.95), Sheffer won the 200 IM (2:14.10) and 500 free (5:30.48), Hill won the 100 free (:53.93), Jim Kelly was tops in the 100 backstroke (1:05.30) and Cody Cox won the 1-meter diving program (199.50).
The Panthers opened with a win in the 200 medley relay. Sheffer, Brown, Duke and Carroll won in a time of 1:48.46, setting the stage for their record-breaking performance in the 200 free relay later.
“Our guys swam well. As good as I hoped, better than I expected [following the layoff],” Bennett said. “We had some good, solid swims all around.”
• In the girls meet, Summer Brown and Brittany Lake each won a pair of individual events to lead the Panthers. Brown won the 200 IM (2:11.12) and 500 free (5:08.47) and Lake was tops in the 200 free (2:13.62) and 100 free (1:01.79).