The Wauseon swimming and diving team is poised for a successful season with many returning letter winners from a team that went to state last season.
Their boys team placed 11th at state while the girls placed 13th.
“We are set to have big improvements across the board,” said coach Tony Schuette of both teams. “We anticipate all athletes returning to both the district and state meets, in addition to adding some new athletes to that list.”
Back for the boys are Lucas Blanchong, Cam Sauber, Nick Dilworth (state qualifier), Lukas Dominique (district qualifier), Austin Schuette (state qualifier), Kyle Vernot (district qualifier), Mac Warncke (state qualifier), Chanller Aguilar, Michael Cheezan, Justin Freestone, Ryan Scherer (state qualifier), Branden Arredondo (state qualifier), J.T. Hutchinson (district qualifier), Andon Raker and Trent Sauber.
Tony Schweinhagen is a returning diver who qualified for state a season ago.
“A total of 21 gentlemen in the water allows for both diversity among events and adds depth to the program,” said Schuette. “All six athletes that competed in the 2017 State Championship are returning. We also have a strong senior led distance group with all four athletes returning from either district or state competition last year. All of our returning athletes combined with the multiple new athletes in the water, set the stage for a competitive season.”
They will have to replace departed letter winners Aaron Beck, Zach Fink, Seth Hutchison and Christian Laging-Suarez. Looking to help fill that void are newcomers Caden Case, Maddux Chamberlain, Braden Vernot, Jonah Figgins and Jameson Gray.
“We have many new swimmers and it can be difficult to determine race specialties for each new athlete,” said Schuette of his team’s potential weaknesses. “With so many boys on the squad, it will be difficult to find events for everyone to swim at each meet.”
The girls team has a lot of positives heading into the season as well.
“A total of 20 ladies in the water allows for both diversity among events and has added depth to the program that has been lacking the last couple of seasons,” said Schuette. “The ladies team returned several state qualifiers from the 2017 season, with each having the ability to make big drops in time in all of their events. We also have several ladies who did not make the district meet last year, but have put in a lot of time developing skills in the off-season. We expect some of these athletes to make the district and state teams. All of our returning athletes combined with the multiple new athletes in the water, set the stage for a competitive season.”
Returning for the girls are Sydney Darnell (state qualifier), Jaydelin Vasvery, McKenzie Darnell (state qualifier), Hannah Richer, Alyssa Russell, Maggie Roelfsema, Brooke Schuette (state qualifier), Megan Carroll, Daisy Giguere, Kiki Gorsuch and Marin Miller.
Kennedy Nation is a returning diver who competed at the district meet last season.
The Indians will have to replace departed letter winners Alexis Meyer, Alexys Carteaux, Kate Precht, Patience Bachman and Audry Lane. However, they add newcomers Bailey McGuire (diver), Avery Giguere, Amanda Baker (diver), Elena Pratt (diver), Ashtyn Falor, Morgan Plotner, Sarayna Russell and Chaney Sigg.
“Developing returning athletes to be more competitive at the district and state levels,” Schuette said on the weaknesses for the girls.
Wauseon opens the season at Ayersville Tuesday, Nov. 28 at 5:30 p.m.