Gators sweep Allderdice in return from holiday break
The Gateway varsity boys and girls swimming and diving teams have turned the page in practices and competitions from December to January, and head coach Jason Kunkle said he hopes several more big swims awaits as the clock winds towards February's WPIAL championships.
The Gators are hoping to build on high-quality swims in the three December meets and last week's sweep against Allderdice.
The six relay teams and several individuals already have qualified for WPIALs, set for Pitt's Trees Pool in late February.
The next 12 days will be busy for the Gateway swimmers with four meets, including a section meet Thursday at 6 p.m. at Fox Chapel and a nonsection meet on Monday at 6 p.m. against Greensburg-Salem at the Furrie Sports Complex Natatorium.
Gateway returns to section competition on Jan. 17 at home against Pittsburgh Central Catholic and Oakland Catholic, and the teams will host Mt. Pleasant in a nonsection meet on Jan. 21.
Kunkle said he liked what he saw from the December meets against Hempfield, Penn-Trafford and Franklin Regional, and the Gators had no problems winning their section openers against Allderdice after several longer and more intense practices over the Christmas break.
The boys won, 84-72, while the girls took care of business, 91.5-80.5.
The veteran Gators swimmers continued to be consistent in the water, while new varsity swimmers gain more experience and confidence with victorious swims.
The Gateway girls won all three relays against Allderdice and took seven events overall.
The 200 medley relay of sophomore Sarah Sheldon, junior Cayti Neff, sophomore Erin Rozeck and sophomore Sydney Mandella won, as did Mandella individually in the 50 and 100 frees, Rozeck in the 100 fly and Sheldon in the 100 back.
Sheldon, Rozeck, Mandella and junior Abbey Kimicata took first in the 400 free relay, while juniors Kylie Hagerich and Val Pascoe, sophomore Bethany Lewis and senior Alyssa Grieco did the same as part of the 200 free relay.
Junior Alison Perry also helped the cause with a first-place finish in the diving competition.
On the boys side, sophomore Alex Coutsoumbis, seniors Kenny Stevens and Ray Doerfler, and junior Alex Caprara won the 200 medley relay, while Doerfler, senior Drew Nosbisch, sophomore Brad Vitt and junior Sean O'Donnell took first in the 200 free relay.
Nosbisch, Caprara, O'Donnell and Stevens capped off the relay sweep with a win in the 400 free relay.
The Gateway boys also took six individual events, as freshman Bryan Patrick Farren won the 100 back.
Also winning individually were Nosbisch in the 50 and 100 frees, Caprara in the 200 IM and the 100 breast, and O'Donnell in the 100 fly.
Nosbisch (50 and 100 free), Caprara (200 IM) and Alex Bolen (200 free) all posted WPIAL-qualifying times against Allderdice.
Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5825 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.