READY TO DIVE BACK IN — The S-GI boys swim team is coming off a 9 – 4 season with several starters returning to the water. Pictured, top row, from left: Hunter Louth, Trevor Cooper, Ryan O’Hara Sam Sheppard and Elliott Tessmer. Middle row: Bradley Zifra, Jake Gorski, Kyle Schultz, Garrett olrogg, Mitchell Bunic, Donald Piatek, Paul Frank and Jonathan Arriaga. Front row: Greyson Louth, Kurt Uschold, Nolan West, Christian Krasnek, Trey Aebley, Jonathan Boberg and Levi VonIderstein. Not pictured: Dominic Hartenstein.
SPRINGVILLE — The Springville-Griffith Institute boys swimming and diving team finished last season 9 – 4. That finish was the best record in six years, for that program. The Griffs lost one senior from last year’s squad in Dylan Boberg. Boberg went to sectionals, last season, and finished 23rd in the 100-backstroke. He was also part of the 400-relay that finished 24th.The loss of Boberg will leave Coach Katie Shelley with some lineup shifting to do.
“[I’m] not sure who will be put in the relays and individual events,” said Shelley. “As I tell all my athletes, no one is a ‘lock’ on any one, particular race. Many things will be decided, based on practice and work ethic. I am a lucky coach to have such great athletes. They work hard at practice and are always looking for a challenge and a more difficult workout. That makes it exciting, as a coach, to try and push them to their limits and see what their potential can be.”
Shelley also said that she was holding “practice time trials,” in which every athlete is timed in every event, to give her an idea of who will be swimming which event. Returning from last year’s team will be junior captain Elliott Tessmer and sophomore captain Don Piatek.
“I actually let the team vote for their own captains,” Shelley said. “These two athletes were also chosen as captains, last swim season, too. They did a great job, last season, and the team obviously thinks so, too.”
Sophomore Mitchell Bunic is coming off a cross country season, in which he finished 31st at sectionals, out of 143 runners. He will take to the pool once again, to defend his Erie County Interscholastic Conference 500-freestyle title, from last season. Bunic took first place in that event. Competing against 30 other swimmers, many of who were juniors and seniors, Bunic took more than eight seconds off his own, personal record. He then went on to finish 12th at sectionals, which qualified him to come back, the next day, for the Section VI finals.
The swimmer also went to sectionals in the 100-breaststroke and finished 20th. Other returning team members who competed in the class meet, last year, are Piatek, Ryan O’Hara, Trevor Cooper, Trey Aebly and Tessmer. Piatek, Bunic and O’Hara were part of the 200-medley relay that finished seventh overall at the class meet.
“I expect the team to place even better, this year, in our division league,” Shelley said.
“We have basically had everyone return, from last year, and gained some new members, as well. I can say that a great portion of the team will qualify to swim and/or dive at the ECIC Championships, as well as qualify for the section VI competition. I have high hopes that more school records will be broken, this year, too.”
The boys will kick off their season with a home meet against St. Francis High School on Friday, Nov. 30. That match will begin at 4:30 p.m.