November 14, 2008

video

It's on! After a week of wondering if this weekend's meet against Hope and Kalamazoo would be held following 480 students, faculty and staff contracting the novo-virus, competition got underway in one of the nation's most closely-watched Division III meets of the year.

Tonight's meet was in Hope's Dow Center, an L-shaped six-lane pool, rich in history but a little short on deck space. With three teams here our first challenge was finding a way to warm up 24 guys in two lanes. You can see how we did it in the video above.

At day's end we're down 95-53 to the host Dutchmen and squared at 74-74 with Kalamazoo. It's been an interesting meet - a mix of good and bad. We are definitely not at full strength right now so I see this weekend as a defining indicator of the direction this team will go this year. Will we be like the wounded animal - cornered and dangerous or will we be liked the whipped puppy, cowering in the corner?

Some guys aren't dealing with the pool very well - too many waves, tough walls to judge, etc. Excuses that we need to get beyond to get to the next level (though something that won't be an issue tomorrow morning when we swim at the Holland Aquatic Center), other guys are stepping up in unique ways. Here are my quick hits:

  • 200 IM - Doug Schranck - an incredible finish - comes off the last wall with a Phelpsesque finish - kicking 12 yards off the final wall to push ahead of one of Hope's guys.
  • 500 Free - Bryan Pelka offering up his best swim of the season and getting back to form - he and Stephen Schranck teaming to go 1-2 against Hope. Add in Adam Glover's first-ever trip under 5:00 and you get a 1-2-3 finish against Kalamazoo
  • 200 Back - Swim of the night - Bob Pellican goes out fast - where Heyboer can't see him. Heyboer tries to come back - outsplits bob 28.9 to 30.16 but can't beat Bob's 1:59.93. It was reminescent of Reeder's suprise win over Josh Pfau way back in what 2002? Underestimate us, and we'll take advantage. Pat and Kyle Winiecki solid swims - Eric Ross comes back mad as hell after his 500 to go under 2:06.
  • 200 Butterfly - Schranck (the younger one) goes out fast and has just enough in the tank to hold off another Hope guy - this time for the win. Bryan Pelka equals his season best while Alex Van Huis dips under.
  • 200 Free Relay - Bax, Blake, Bob and Rip team for a season-best 1:28.55. Splits were all solid 22.5, 22.1, 22.1, 21.7 - our best relay starts of the year. 'B' group of Winiecki (23.29, Varner (22.95), Rothenbaum (23.01) and big Schranck (22.41) go 1:31.66 for 5th.
Alright, that's all for now. More tomorrow.


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