Lady Titan swimmers take third at season opener

A young team trailed behind Tecumseh and Mt. Vernon

The Lady Titans swim team came up short in its first swim meet of the 2021 season. The girls competed at Tecumseh against both Tecumseh and Mt. Vernon. The Lady Titan swimmers came up short against both schools with a 3rd place finish.

In the meet’s 12 events, only junior Ruthie Mercer took a first place finish in the 500 freestyle and also snagged five second place finishes.

“I really just wanted [a] time to start off [with],” Mercer said. She hopes to improve on her initial time this season, getting faster at every meet.

Mercer’s 500 freestyle race was a close one one until the end.

“After a few laps, most of the girls dropped off, and I knew that I could hold them off,” Mercer said.

The girls’ swim coach Kasey Knaebel was excited to see the team come together and compete this season.

“I think the most exciting part about the meet was seeing how our team came together to fill out the events and compete,” Knaebel said. “We have a lot of new faces to try and fill in gaps, and they did such a great job. We also had a lot of good performances from our returners which was very encouraging.”

The girls’ team welcomed a lot of new swimmers this year and is excited to see them get better.

“I was very happy with how everyone performed,” Knaebel said. “The new girls stepped into some big roles and competed. They got us a lot of points and we learned a lot about events that they are going to be really good at.” 

Sophomore Aleks Parmer feels that the team will get better as the season progresses.

“I’d say the program has a bright future due to how young the team is,” she said.

The improvement of the team will not happen overnight.

“Our team has a lot of new freshmen this year, though, so it is going to take some time before we get back into the rhythm of things,” Parmer said.

The excitement of the meet was welcoming, especially since last year no one was allowed to attend competitions. Parents who wanted to watch their kids swim had to rely on choppy live streams that would cut out on wreck internet connections.

“The meet itself was exciting,” Knaebel said. “We got to have fans, and the girls were really cheering their teammates on. It was loud there, which always creates a great atmosphere for competing.”

With no pool, Gibson Southern shares practice time at Tecumseh and considers that its home pool. The team’s regular season lasts until January 18 for the girls and February 7 for the boys.