The WaterNeers had the most successful season the team has had in the last four years. Getting 1 relay, 1 individual swimmer, and a diver making it to the state meet. The Girls 200 Medley consisting of Kayla Fisher, Emma Logan, Brooke Farren, and Alex Knodel placed 19 at the state meet. Alex Knodel placed 22 in the 500 freestyle individually. Freshman Diver Augusta Ness also placed 23 individually.
With less swimmers moving on in the postseason (due to Covid) it was harder for the team to advance. The season started off like every other year, the dual at Upper Arlington.
The Pioneers won less than five total events on the night. After that the season was underway, and the Pioneers were hoping for no Covid-19 related pauses to the season. Over winter break, the Pioneers dueled with Olentangy and Berlin. Both the boys and the girls beat Berlin. Then on Senior night vs Olentangy, the boys team won, but the girls lost. Then in a duel against Westerville South at the Westerville Aquatics Center, both teams also beat South. The last two regular season meets were against New Albany and Dublin Coffman. The team lost both of those. Due to the Pandemic, there were no OCC’s this year. But the tournament was still on. Sectionals were held at the Delaware YMCA, and all four Olentangy high schools joined together for a quad meet. Orange had multiple swimmers qualify for Districts at Bowling Green next weekend. The Girls relay in the 200 medley, 200 freestyle, and 400 freestyle all qualified. Individually on the girls side, Emma Logan qualified in the 200 freestyle and 100 breaststroke, Kayla Fisher 50 freestyle and 100 backstroke, Brooke Farren 100 butterfly, Alex Knodel 500 freestyle and 100 breaststroke. On the boys side, 200 medley and 200 freestyle qualified, Tuckor Lambert 100 Freestyle and 100 backstroke, and Graham Weidenhammer in the 100 breaststroke. This year only the top 16 swimmers made it to districts compared to the regular 30. At Bowling Green for districts, The 200 medley relay, Alex Knodel, Brooke Farren, Emma Logan, and Kayla Fisher will go. Individually Alex Knodel in the 500 both move on to next weekend in Canton. On the diving side freshman Augusta Ness made it to the state meet as well. Alex Knodel finished 22 in the state in the girls 500 freestyle at the state meet. The girls 200 medley finished 19, consisting of Knodel, Farren, Logan, and Fisher. Freshman diver Augusta Ness finished 23 in the state.
The MVPs of the season for the team were determined by who scored the most individual points for the team. For the girls it was Alex Knodel and for the boys Tuckor Lambert secured this spot.
The Pioneers will be losing quite a few with the Class of ‘21 graduating. Regan Readnour, Jake Rankin, Sam Evers, Ian Sheets, Joanna Ross, Brooke Farren, Emma Logan, Graham Weidenhammer, Ben Resusser, Lauren Muffley, Ethan Knecht, and Tannor Lambert are leaving the program, all of them four year swimmers. The graduating divers include Paige Kadar and Carissa Long.
“This season’s outcome was very impressive, with the first ever girls relay from Orange qualifying for states, a lot of team records were broken as well. Also considering the pandemic causing quarantines, changes in practice, and team events the team did outstanding,” said four year Varsity swimmer and senior Emma Logan, who was a part of the relay that went to states.
“I liked how we came together to create positive energy at meets even though it was far from being a normal season. I loved my last year on the relay with Tanny, Tucky, and Brady,” said four year Varsity swimmer and Senior Graham Weidenhamer.
I myself had a great four years as a WaterNeer and I enjoyed all of it. I wanna thank Coach JR for everything he’s done for the Orange Swim program and for always having a smile on his face. He is one of the best coaches around and does a fantastic job. To the rest of the WaterNeers thanks for a great senior season!
‘Neers On Three!
By: Tannor Lambert