Simpson picks up second WPIAL medal
Day two of the WPIAL swimming championships at Pitt's Trees Pool is in the books, and local swimmers picked up where they left off.
Senior Luke Simpson, the lone swimmer on Charleroi's swim team, performed solidly for the second straight day.
After winning a silver medal in the boys' 50-yard freestyle Thursday, he collected a bronze medal in the 100-yard backstroke Friday with a time of 54.17 seconds.
“I dropped two seconds off of my best time and six seconds from my seed time,” said Simpson, who was seeded 14th in the 100 backstroke.
EF senior Andrew Ferrington took fourth in the race with a time of 54.78.
Simpson said he thoroughly enjoyed the WPIAL experience this year.
“This was awesome and I am so excited,” Simpson said. “It means a lot to represent Charleroi and it makes me feel really good knowing that my hard work is paying off.”
Simpson is preparing for the PIAA championships March 13-16 at Bucknell University.
“I am going to train really hard for the state meet and I would like to win the 50,” Simpson said. “Today was unexpected and I would like to place in the backstroke.”
The lone champion on day two was Elizaeth Forward senior Braelyn Tracy in the girls' 500-yard freestyle. She won the gold with a time of 5:16.37.
EF's Ferrington and fellow senior Josh Kreig, junior Kameron Faychak, and sophomore Tyler Wachs took the bronze in the boys' 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:20.11.
Faychak and Kreig weren't finished, as Faychak finished third in the boys' 100-yard breaststroke at 1:01.61 and Kreig was fifth in the boys' 100-yard freestyle at 49.10 seconds.
Yough freshman Jessica Cochran finished fourth in the girls' 100-yard backstroke in 59.65.
EF senior Josh Vasko placed fourth in the boys' 1-meter diving competition.
The EF boys finished sixth in the team standings with 56 points; Charleroi finished 18th with 17 points, Ringgold was 24th with 12 points and Belle Vernon Area was 29th with four points.
On the girls' side, EF finished in 12th place with 33 points.
Bill Hughes is a freelance writer.