Hampton girls swim team showing growth

Thursday, January 16, 2020 | 7:43 PM

The Hampton girls swim team may not be sending a lot of individuals to WPIALs this year, but the training and hard work have paid off.

The team is continually showing growth by posting best times, in addition to qualifying for the WPIAL championships in the 200 medley and 400 freestyle relays.

“Overall, I’m really happy with the team,” said coach Morgan Zweygardt. “They’re going for best times. It may not be WPIAL qualifying times, but I’m happy for how they’re personally doing for themselves.”

“I’m getting to the point now where I’ve been the coach, I’ve coached some of them four years. To see them progress through high school, it’s been fun for me to watch.”

Senior captain Rosy Oh thinks both relay teams stand to improve from last year’s times at WPIALs.

“Usually we don’t qualify this early,” she said. “I’d say having qualified with only five meets under our belt is awesome. Both of those relays were well under the required time, so I think this season is looking really great. I think at WPIALs we’re just looking to do better than we did last year.”

One individual who could make states with such a performance is junior Catie Kress, who is working hard on improving in both the 200 individual medley and 500 freestyle.

“She’s ahead of where she was in the 200 IM,” said Zweygardt. “She’s putting in the work and doing what she needs to do. It’s just going to come down to that day and seeing how she feels.”

Oh, fellow senior captain Emily Berkebile and the rest of the seniors are doing their part to instill a sense of community, including student sleepovers, installing a big and little sister system, Christmas decorations and Secret Santa.

“It seems natural because of what I’ve seen the other seniors do,” said Oh. “They set such a great example. I feel like this year we’re not only trying to replicate that, but add onto it.”

Plenty of young talent abounds, as Oh has been impressed with sophomore Belle Donato.

“Her commitment is so contagious and the atmosphere she brings is amazing,” she said. “I know she’s going to continue fostering that as she gets older.”

Freshmen Emma An and Julia Adamczyk are part of the 400 freestyle relay team that qualified for WPIALs. Adamczyk also qualified in the 100 backstroke. Zweygardt is impressed with An as a younger freshman who just turned 14.

“Just seeing her make the change, seeing how well she’s handing the new training schedule, she’s an absolute workhorse,” she said.


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