Deep roster should help keep Fox Chapel swimmers in contention

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Saturday, December 7, 2019 | 10:25 AM


Last season, the Fox Chapel boys and girls swim teams each posted 9-2 overall and 5-1 Section 3-AAA records, finishing second to Franklin Regional.

The girls finished sixth at WPIALs and 15th at PIAAs with the girls 200 medley team taking fourth at WPIALs and 10th at PIAAs. Leia Ross finished sixth at WPIALs in the 100 backstroke.

Coach Dan Taylor’s team lost four swimmers to graduation and and standout sophomore Zoe Skirboll is focusing on training for next year’s U.S. Olympic Team Trials. As a freshman, Skirboll made an immediate impact as she won the WPIAL 100 breaststroke, setting a record in the process. She finished second in the 200 IM.

Key returning swimmers include seniors Grace Gackenback and Ross and sophomores Vivian Shao and Rei Sperry.

Other letterwinners are seniors Angelique Uku, Bryn Gerlach, Gwen Cullen, Lylah Simeone and Maggie Gaddess and sophomores Franny Heidinger, Ariana Pasquella, Julia Stutzman and Lydia Turnquist.

Promising newcomers include Sophie Shao, Edie Brush and Talia Bugel.

On the boys side, senior Jake Sperry and sophomore Nathaniel Ross return.

Other senior letterwinners are Ian Lowe, Evan Gu, Will Wang, Nate Gaggini, Nate Haitema-Serkov, John Klamut, Joe Johnson and Brent Brewster. Juniors are Ben Siri, Ryan Kenyon and Nate Anderson. Sophomore returnees are David Derring, Tim Park and Holden Smith.

“We have good depth on both teams this year,” Taylor said. “There is a lot of experience that will help both teams contend for the section title. On the boys side, we are not returning many WPIAL qualifiers.”

Other Class AAA, Section 3 teams are Franklin Regional, Gateway, Penn Hills, Woodland Hills, Plum and Shaler.

“Franklin Regional looks like the top team in the section for both girls and boys,” Taylor said. “They are the team to beat.”

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