Returning to the Upper Perk girls' swim team will be front left to right, Becca Rose, Daniele Marino and Sara Good, back row, Kristen Kilroy, Christina Williams, Felicia Sloyer and Krysta Rehrig.
After watching her swimmers set two school records at States last March, Upper Perk swim coach Missy Peart was already looking ahead to 2011-2012.
“The boys saw the times that they need to come back next year, and they already have them on their individual plates ready to start next year and devour as the season progresses,” she said at the time.
Let the feeding frenzy begin.
Led by Mason Cassel, all of last year’s top swimmers, more seasoned, experienced and developed, are ready to kick off what should be a spectacular season.
Cassel, now a junior, set the school record in the butterfly at States in 53.56. He also joined with Kyle Himmelwright, Zak Kibler and Blade Umstead to establish the school record in the medley relay (1:41.63). Himmelwright is a junior, Kibler and Umstead seniors.
Success last year seems to have bred a desire to attain even greater heights.
Peart has noted an “awesome work ethic and dedication to team. The athletes are at practice ready to work hard keeping our goals in mind for season: top 3 finish in Pac-10 and going for District championship.”
Other veteran swimmers returning include seniors Collin Junk, Matt Rose and Jody Peart; juniors Jason Mercando, Quinn Perlstein, Kendrick Bowman and Bryon Scholl. They will be joined by newcomer Brandon Umstead.
“This is the year for the boys team,” said Peart who is in her second year as the head coach after seven years as an assistant. “A couple of boys have been swimming since last season and staying strong in the water and others have been committed to other sports and dedicated to strong dry land training. The boys are focused for huge successes this year.”
An early season showdown with Boyertown (January 3) is already prominent on the team’s radar.
“Boyertown is really strong with freshmen but hopefully we can swim over them,” said Peart who sees the Bears as the Indians’ main obstacle to Pac-10 supremacy.
The meet will be at home, as will eight others, another reason for high optimism in the Tribe’s camp.
The girls team, led by seniors Felicia Sloyer and Lindsey Brust, is bolstered by the arrival of first timers Jackie Hammil, Megan Koder, Maggie Frank, Marielle Kuhns, Chelsea Dieroff, Shantel Rios and Danielle Krempasky.
Other returnees include Sara Good, Becca Rose, Christina Williams, Danielle Marino, Krysta Rehrig and Kristin Kilroy.
Peart noted that the female swimmers came to the pre-season in great shape determined to improve on last year’s two win total. She is “excited for new swimmers and their talents.”
The swim team is welcoming a new assistant coach to the staff this year, Jessica Crawfort, who is also the new school psychologist at Marlborough Elementary.
“If I can glean anything from the experience of watching these current athletes prepare for another season,” said Peart, “it is that they can physically prepare for their races as any other swimmer but swimming is 90 percent mental when it comes to the big races. Jessica will be a great asset with her background to prepare the kids to believe they are ready for those races.”
There will be no diving team this year. That was eliminated from the budget as a cost cutting measure last spring.