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Fox Chapel's Sterrett takes 11th in 200 IM at PIAA meet

| Friday, March 15, 2013, 11:36 p.m.

LEWISBURG — Fox Chapel's Scott Sterrett had some cautious optimism about his shot at bringing home a medal on the first day of the PIAA Class AAA swimming finals.

After all, he had a solid fourth-place showing in the 200-yard individual medley at the WPIAL Class AAA championships at Pitt's Trees Pool on Feb. 28 that had him seeded sixth in the state heading into the meet at Bucknell University's Kinney Natatorium.

He even could have dropped a couple of spots and still made the final heat.

Only he didn't falter a spot or two. Sterrett finished sixth in his morning preliminary heat and plummeted all the way to 14th place, which sent him into the evening consolation final with no chance of securing a medal.

Only the top eight qualifiers in the four early heats make it into the medal round.

“I felt a little weak,” said Sterrett, who took 11th overall after posting a time of 1:55.56 in the consolation heat. “I wasn't feeling great. I didn't eat as much as I probably should have in the morning, and I just felt a little weak.”

Sterrett came off the blocks, fell behind the pack before the first turn and plodded through the butterfly leg. His 25.02 seconds split time for that 50-yard stretch was only 12th of the 16 swimmers who moved into the consolations and finals.

Though he did make up a bit of ground in the breaststroke leg with a solid 32.88-second split, his 28.02 in the freestyle was 15th of the final 16 finishers.

“I knew the guy in Lane 4 was going to be fast, and the guy to my right went out fast as well,” Sterrett said. “I was trailing the whole race and that doesn't help.”

Sterrett still has an opportunity to bring home a medal. He is the No. 13 seed heading into Saturday's 100 breaststroke final.

He also wasn't the only competitor from Fox Chapel to struggle Friday as the boys 200 medley relay team finished 19th, and the school's divers, Emily Eames and Miranda Simon, were knocked out in the first round of cuts in the Class AAA girls diving competition. Eames finished 26th and Simon 28th out of the 32 finalists.

Kiski Area freshman Paris Krug came in 19th in the 200 freestyle, with a time of 1:55.17, almost nine seconds behind first-place finisher Leah Smith of Oakland Catholic. Plum freshman Hannah Adamski ended up 21st in the 50 freestyle, with a time of 24.61.

Keith Barnes is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at kbarnes@tribweb.com or via Twitter @KBarnes_Trib.

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