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Splashing toward state
Sequim’s swimmers still are seeking their berths to Washington state’s big pool party, but two of their diving brethren already have tickets punched.
Senior Ezra Perkins and junior Connor Christianson qualified for the class 2A state meet at last week’s Olympic League meet in Port Angeles and will compete with the state’s top 2A divers in Federal Way on Feb. 18-19.
Though none earned automatic state berths at their league meet on Feb. 1, several Sequim High swimmers and divers inched closer to those marks and got a good warm-up for this weekend’s district meet.
“We … taper this week; it sets them up to have a peak performance,” Sequim coach Linda Moats said.
Sequim’s 200 free relay team of Noe Calderon, Taylor Bonneau, Drew Rickerson and Tommy Moores took first, dropped a second off their best time and are less than 3.5 seconds from a state automatic berth.
“With times for these four swimmers all less than 25.22 per 50, it’s hard to imagine faster swimmers,” Moats said.
Sequim’s 200 medley relay team of Calderon, Bonneau, Rickerson and Kris Petersen topped the league field and touched the wall at 1:55.4, three seconds off their previous best and six seconds from a state berth.
Bonneau, Moores and Rickerson swept the top three spots in the 50 free.
“It was a fun race to watch since they were side by side in the pool,” Moats said. “Good thing P.A. has a nice timing system because it was such a close race.”
Sequim divers Austin Clement racked up 290.3 points and Cameron Harrison tallied 268.2 points to earn district tourney berths.
Jake Sisco, David Vollenweider, Byron Boots, Randy Hogoboom and Joel Stephens posted their best times of the season in the race.
Kiano Stoppani shed nearly five seconds off his top 100 free mark of the season.
“He really worked hard in that race and was so pleased with his achievement,” Moats said. “We are all very proud of him.”
Petersen shed six seconds off his 200 individual medley to qualify for districts while Doug Dunbar set a personal best in the 100 breaststroke by three seconds.
On to districts
Sequim will have 10 swimmers and four divers at the West Central District meet, scheduled for Feb. 10-12 at Hazen High School in Renton.
The top four finishers in each event at districts qualify for the 2A state meet a week later.
Sequim athletes go up against athletes from 15 other teams across the region, including Olympic League foes Kingston, Klahowya, North Kitsap, Olympic and Port Angeles; South Puget Sound League schools Clover Park, Eatonville, Franklin Pierce, Steilacoom, Sumner and Washington; Evergreen, Lindbergh, Renton, and Tyee from the Seamount League; and Interlake, the lone 2A school in District 2.
Moats figures that Interlake, Sumner, Lindbergh, Evergreen and Port Angeles will bring the toughest competition at districts. Interlake finished second in class 2A competition last season, while Port Angeles was 17th and Sumner placed 26th at the class 3A meet in 2010 before dropping down in classification this season.
Sequim placed third (behind Interlake and Steilacoom) at the district meet last season and 15th at the 2A state meet, on the strength of its divers. Christianson placed fifth, Clement was sixth, Zack Springer was ninth and Perkins placed 11th at state.
Reach Michael Dashiell at email@example.com.