Britten points to her senior class as a strength of her squad.
“We have five seniors who are all returning letter winners — Kristina Arslain, Cassi Closson, Elise Cobb, Karla Martinson and Mollee Mygrant. They are providing great leadership,” she said.
The Tigers’ junior class is led by Addie Roth and Karly Sprouse, but both are on the mend from illnesses.
Britten noted she has 17 sophomores. The talented class includes diver Rachel Johns, who was runner-up in the MIC meet and seventh in the Carmel Sectional last season.
“She has been doing great things on the board and working really hard. I’m anxious to get her into some competition,” Britten said.
The sophomore class also includes Savannah Gamester and Ashton Martin. In the MIC meet, Gamester won the 100 backstroke and Gamester and Martin helped the Tigers win the 200 medley relay. Roth also was on that relay team.
Charlotte Ahls, who excelled in middle school swimming at Northwestern, is back at the school and part of the big sophomore class.
Britten noted Roth, Gamester, Martin and Ahls are strong all-around swimmers.
The Tiger skipper likes her squad’s options.
“We have a lot of depth,” she said. “I can’t mention all 33 of the kids, but everyone of them is an integral piece to the puzzle. We win as a team, we lose as a team. It’s going to take all of us to have a great season.”
Northwestern opens today, at home against Carroll.
Bennett has a nice mix of veterans and newcomers.
“We’re looking pretty solid. I have my powerhouses coming back from last year, Summer Brown and Katie Brown and a couple solid divers in Maddie Trueblood and Christina Wyant, and we have a nice core of freshman girls,” he said. “The whole team has hit it hard this first couple weeks. I’m really excited to see what they can produce.”
Bennett credits Katie Brown and the other seniors for helping their younger teammates understand what is needed on a daily basis.
“They set a good practice example,” he said.
Katie Brown swims the individual medley and backstroke, and Bennett may ask her to contribute in sprints this season.
Summer Brown can pretty much tackle any event.
“In our area, there is not anybody who can touch her,” Bennett said. “It’s not by accident — she is very good for a reason. She works hard all the time.”
Bennett also likes what he has seen from seniors Jennifer Hendershot and Hannah Marley, junior Kelsey Quinn, sophomore Aly Purvis and freshmen Danielle Pate, Anna Constable and Kenzie Quinn. Bennett noted Pate “is working at a higher level than I’d expect from a freshman. She is solid at everything — just a great all-around swimmer.”
Trueblood and Wyant are part of a deep diving roster that also includes junior Sarah Blume, who is putting her gymnastics skills to use on the springboard.
Western opens today at Kokomo.