Team leaders were hoping to improve upon last year’s 3-5 season under second-year head coach George News, and they are well on their way.
News and Assistant Coach Rachel Giammarelle were thrilled with the head-to-head dual meet victories over Mosby Park and Chattanooga Golf and Country Club.
“It is nice to start the season with a win. We have never beaten the Waterdawgs,” said News. “Our swimmers have displayed a winning ttitude and that carried over into the meet.”
“This was one of those meets that you love to be a part of,” said ‘Cudas parent and media relations spokesperson Jack Foley. “It rained most of the night, and everyone was huddled up under tents and umbrellas, but it never really fazed the kids.”
In the opening match, the teams exchanged the lead throughout the night, and the win was not determined until the freestyle relays at the very end.
Leading the ‘Cudas to their win over Mosby Park was Lattie Reddock with 14 points, followed by seven year old Micah Klingbeil with twelve. Zach Beeler, Kailey Klingbeil, Maddox Parrott, Krystal Funes, Grace Jones, Lindsey Driggers, and Tommy Swink all contributed ten or more points to the team’s win. In all, 44 of the team’s swimmers helped earn the season’s first victory.
The second win came just three nights later against Chattanooga Golf and Country Club.
The Wavemakers ventured down to the Calhoun Recreation Department pool for the first time as part of new Divison II realignment.
“They didn’t have enough kids to fill all the heats, which was a disadvantage to them, but they have some really fast and dynamic swimmers,” said News of the visiting team.
Led by the Nease family, the ‘Cudas beat CGCC by a final tally of 411 -281.
Brothers Justin and Joseph Nease tied for a team high 19 points each and sister Adison added six more.
Justin took home five first-place ribbons. He placed first in the boys 9-10 100IM, breaststroke, butterfly and two relays. In two of the three individual events, he took off more than six seconds from his previous times. More impressively, he improved his best time in the butterfly by more than twelve seconds.
“Several of the kids were amazing in how they bettered their times,” said News. “Allie Workman, Julina Caito, Lillie Lewis, George Russell, Joanna Foley, Anthony Wilkinson, Adison and Bryant Mathis all had times in individual events that were at least eight seconds faster than their previous times.”
Micah Klingbeil and Grace Jones lead all eight-and-under swimmers with 13 and 12 points respectively.
Behind Nease, Bailey Mitchum and Jacob Baker racked up points for the 9-10 year old bracket, which tallied the most points of any age group with 107.
The 11-12 year old swimmers had five Barracudas in double digits with Geanna Funes and Joshua Gallman adding 13 each.
Lindsey Driggers dominated the girls 13-14 year olds with victories in all three of her individual events, ending the night with 18 points.
The team’s senior swimmers were lead by Tommy Swink and Marah McEntyre.
“We have 77 swimmers and every one of them is doing his best to learn and improve, and that ultimately helps the team win, and we really like winning,” said News. “It feels pretty good to be undefeated.”