East Valley Preps Swimming Preview - East Valley Tribune: VarsityXtra

East Valley Preps Swimming Preview

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Posted: Wednesday, August 30, 2006 1:14 am | Updated: 4:35 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

TEAMS TO WATCH: Brophy boys: The Broncos begin a new era, as Pat O’Neill takes over as coach for Bill Kopas. In addition to winning 26 of the past 27 state titles, O’Neill believes he’s walking into Phoenix Brophy’s most talented team in years.

Swimming World named the Broncos the 2004 national champions, and it is this team’s goal with 17 of 21 state tournament swimmers returning.

Dobson boys:

Six state qualifiers return from the 2005 team which took third at the 5A-I state meet and second in the region. Among the state meet returnees are three All-Americans (Alex Lundeen, Nolan Ruane and Brae Lezcono) who won a combined 10 state medals.

Desert Mountain girls:

Since they’re now in 5A-II, the Wolves sidestepped 5A-I power Phoenix Xavier and won all 11 swimming events to capture the Division II girls crown. Once again, the Wolves are loaded with state meet winners: Emily Barton (200 IM, 100 breaststroke), Angela Duckworth (200 freestyle, 500 freestyle) and Whitney Lopus (100 freestyle, 200 freestyle).

4A girls:

2005 Swimmer of the Year Danielle Milligan returns for Phoenix Pinnacle; Phoenix Arcadia and Scottsdale Chaparral are perennially state title contenders, and there’s plenty of championships between Milligan, D’Arcy Schmidt (Arcadia), Kelly Forrester and Tamara Lelli (Chaparral), and Rachel Ripley (Tempe McClintock).

KEY DATES

Sept. 12: Arcadia at Chaparral (boys/girls)

Sept. 16: Brophy Invitational/ Thunder Wolf Classic

Sept. 30: Chandler Invitational

Oct. 27-28: 4A state championship meet

Nov. 3-4: 5A state championship meet

DID YOU KNOW?

New at Brophy:

Pat O’Neill is the new coach at Brophy, replacing longtime coach Bill Kopas, who left the area for another job. The popular O’Neill led Mesa Mountain View to six second-place finishes (behind Brophy) in nine seasons with the Toros. Ellisha Romo takes over both programs at Tempe Corona del Sol.

Firebirds return:

The Chaparral boys finished third in the 4A state meet last fall, remarkable considering they swam without their two top swimmers — including the graduated Kyle Newman — and the team’s highest finish was third place in the 200 medley relay. Will the Firebirds have enough horses for another photo finish?

Dynasty:

Xavier won its seventh consecutive girls state title. Cimone Miner, Nicole Lynch and Delia Cronin return from the 200 medley relay team which broke the national private school record.

Fast events:

Six girls posted All-American times in the 50 freestyle at the 5A state meet. Five swimmers did it in the 100 butterfly and 100 freestyle.

THINGS TO WATCH

Chandler’s pool:

The school’s new pool made quite a splash last season. At the school’s Thunderwolf Classic, 13 of 20 events became new invitational records, and enough good swimmers are competing to push that number higher. TOP

SWIMMERS TO WATCH

Buddy Turner:

How much more can one person do? At Scottsdale Horizon, Turner has four state titles and is the Tribune’s two-time Swimmer of the Year. He broke a junior championships meet record in the 100-meter freestyle in California this summer, and hasn’t lost a high school race since his freshman year.

Caleb Percevecz:

2005 was a good year for Desert Mountain. While the boys and girls teams won 5A-II titles, Percevecz won his third consecutive diving crown. The goal is a four-peat this year to end his high school career.

Austin Fowler:

The Brophy senior All-American is coming off two state titles (200 IM and 100 freestyle). Two more individual titles could be the tip of the iceberg for a deep Broncos team.

Katherine Pickard:

The Arcadia senior led the Titans to a second-place finish behind Phoenix Sunnyslope in the 4A-II state meet. Pickard won four titles: 200 freestyle, 100 butterfly, and was part of both the 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams.

Christine Olson:

Not a bad season at Gilbert Mesquite: She set a 5A-I state meet record in the 100 backstroke (dating back to 1993) and won the 200 IM.

OTHER SWIMMERS TO WATCH

Boys

Michael Zoldos, Jr., Arcadia

Robert Gonzales, Sr., Brophy

Jim O’Hara, Sr., Brophy

Rob Wood, Jr., Chaparral

Alex Lundeen, Sr., Dobson

Adam Small, Jr., Corona del Sol

Ryan Blumenfurth, Sr., Desert Mtn.

Jerome Walker, Sr., Desert Ridge

Josh Schifferer, Sr., Dobson

Nolan Ruane, Sr., Dobson

Brae Lezcano, Sr., Dobson

Mark Celoya, Sr., Hamilton

Carl Mickelson, So., Hamilton

Zac Hojnacki, So., Hamilton

Brian McCalley, Sr., Highland

Austin Lovell, Sr., Highland

Travis Hyden, Jr., Mountain Pointe

Ian McGinnity, Sr., Mountain View

Ben Hogan, Sr., Mountain View

Fili Seanez, Jr., Notre Dame

Girls

Katherine Pickard, Sr., Arcadia

Alyssa Sakurai, So., Arcadia

Lindsey Stevens, Jr., Arcadia

Staci Fellows, Jr., Basha

Chloe Hedden, Jr., Cactus Shadows

Jackie Pushak, Sr., Cactus Shadows

Sarah Cox, Jr., Chaparral

Erin Campbell, Sr., Corona del Sol

Samantha Maxwell, Sr., Corona del Sol

Nicole McAndrew, Sr., Desert Vista

Tori Blusiewicz, Jr., Dobson

Tracie Swartz, Fr., Dobson

Christine Conrad, Sr., Gilbert

Katherine Smith, Sr., Hamilton

Rachel Wilt, So, Hamilton

Kelsey Maddy, So., Mesquite

Samantha Caldwell, Sr., Mtn. Pointe

Aleesha Miller, Jr., Mtn. View

Lauren Walker, Sr., Mtn. View

Abby Zepeda, Sr., Pinnacle

Kelsey Diener, Jr., Red Mountain

Delia Cronin, Sr., Xavier

Mychala Lynch, Sr., Xavier

Jessica Davis, Sr., Westwood

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