Norwin swim teams find mixed results at WCCAs
By: Karen Kadilak
Friday, February 1, 2019 | 7:48 PM
The Norwin girls swimming team had a lot going against it but still managed to shine under first-year coach Doug Watson at the Westmoreland County Coaches Association championship meet Jan. 26 at Derry.
The Knights placed fifth of 14 Class AAA and Class AA teams. They likely will be faster at the WPIAL Class AAA championship from Feb. 28-March 1 at Pitt.
“I was extremely pleased with a top-five finish,” Watson said. “We had a relay that got second (disqualification), and all the teams in front of us gave diving.
“We had personal-best times, but we haven’t tapered yet. I expect additional time drops at the end of the season and (at) WPIALs.”
Earning silver medals were freshman Berna Zukina in the 50-yard freestyle (24.81 seconds) and sophomore Elizabeth “Lizzie” Smeltzer, 500 freestyle (5:22.98).
The 200 medley relay team of freshman Joey Testa, Smeltzer, senior Courtney Kosanovic and sophomore Jordan Kutchak also was second (1:52.52).
Picking up bronze were Testa in the 100 backstroke (1:02.27) and Zukina in the 100 freestyle (54.85).
Testa enjoyed her first county championship and looks forward to WPIALs.
“I spent my whole life preparing for high school swimming,” she said.
Other medalists included sophomore Sarah Todaro, fifth place, 200 freestyle (2:04.41); freshman Manya Olshanski, sixth, 200 freestyle (2:04.43); Kutchak, fifth, 50 freestyle (25.26); and Testa, sixth, 100 butterfly (1:01.86).
The 400 freestyle relay team of Todaro, junior Allie Plassio, Smeltzer and Zukina was fourth (3:48.31).
On the boys side, the Knights earned no medals and finished 11th of 13.
Junior Austin Livsey in the 100 freestyle (53.71) and the 200 freestyle relay team of freshman Micah Gaydos, sophomore Seth Baiardi, sophomore Jimmy McGrody and Livsey (1:41.43) placed eighth for Norwin’s best finishes.
Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.