Bulldogs win second consecutive divisional title

As her competitors were waiting on the blocks for the event to start, senior captain Jenny Erickson was waiting in the water because of her recent ankle surgery, just as eager for the buzzer to go off.

Despite sickness, injuries and snow days, the swim and dive team ended its regular season just as successful as its last; the boys finished undefeated and the girls with a near perfect 5-1 record.
“The team has overcome obstacles by remaining optimistic and determined,” Erickson said. “With the loss of [sophomore] Timothy Buettner and the snow, our team is hurting a little bit, but not giving up.”

Despite the absence of exchange student Buettner, who returned to his native Germany, the Bulldogs earned their second consecutive divisional title Feb. 13 as senior captain Chris Verboncoeur won both the 50 yard freestyle and 100 yard butterfly events. Sophomore Timothy Faerber placed second in the one meter dive to help the cause. Although the team placed first in combined score, the girls fell short, placing second behind girls powerhouse Whitman.

“Everyone had strong performances,” head coach Rodney Van Tassell said. “I am happy that the boys won, but the snow break made us kind of sluggish.”

A week later, the Bulldogs placed second in counties on Feb. 20, where the boys placed third behind Sherwood and Wootton and the girls were second to Whitman again. Junior Michael Pratt and senior captain Alicia Watkins exhibited strong performances.

“We swam well, but we did not swim to our fullest potential,” sophomore Chris Wysocki said.
Metros, the weekend of Feb. 25, will be the last test for the senior-heavy squad to show its ability, as 17 seniors will be leaving for college.

“Our senior class is very strong,” Van Tassell said. “In order to be as strong as we are this year, we need help from incoming freshman and current juniors. It is scary how many points the seniors bring in.”