GISA State Championships Report
Despite the absence of yet another conference championship opportunity, the 2021-2022 swim season was one for the history books as the Cougars have made their presence known around GISA. While other AAC schools found themselves struggling to make sports happen, TCS not only found a way to put together a swim team, but arguably the best team the school has ever had; boasting 12 state qualifiers in 40 different events! While not all 12 were able to attend this weekend’s events, the group that was able to make it had an absolute blast diving in head first and swimming into school history.
Varsity: Representing the High School this weekend was Senior Alex Hogg making his final trip to state flanked by the freshman duo of Sarell Tutt and AJ Hormel. Although all three competed admirably, the young guns stole the show this year. Competing in his best event, the 100 meter backstroke, AJ’s more than two second improvement got him a 19th place finish after being seeded 23rd going into the meet. While those of you reading these meet recaps all season have become aware of the talents by Sarell Tutt, her name has now made its way throughout the GISA community as her three top ten finishes helped propel the team to a 12th place girls finish as well as a 13th place overall team finish for the first time in school history. Sarell took 10th in her 50 freestyle, 8th in her 100 backstroke, and 3rd in her 100 breaststroke, dropping time in all three proving that this is only the beginning for her!
Junior Varsity: This year’s championship was off to a great start as the middle school boasted 9 qualifiers which was the largest JV team we have ever taken to the event. Unfortunately, two of those members were forced to scratch leaving us with seven. Despite not having two of our top swimmers, and being outnumbered by a lot of good schools, the Cougars rose to the challenge and gave their all dropping time in almost every event that they swam! Next to the two girls relay teams which finished 13th in the medley relay and 15th in the freestyle relay, the biggest performances came from seventh graders Skylar Brown and Charlotte Morgan. Skylar seemed to have taken offense to her 40th place seed time in her 50 meter backstroke as she swam like a woman on a mission both winning her heat and earning a 21st place finish out of over 70 competitors! While the rest of the team and crowd were still celebrating the amazing accomplishment that Skylar managed, Charlotte decided that it was her turn to show her mettle in her best event, the 50 meter breaststroke. Already being seeded high, 13th, Charlotte gave everything she had to try and break into the top ten. Although she came just shy of her goal by finishing 11th she was able to drop more time off and set herself up for a top 10 finish next year!
This Team: A lot of focus of this issue has been around the accomplishments of certain individuals. While those are remarkable and deserve all of the recognition that they get, not enough can be said of the spirit and camaraderie of these kids. While they were not swimming themselves, they were always cheering on their teammates and congratulating other teams on their success.
Up Next: The team looks to follow up this dominant performance with another in the 2022-2023 season. As one JV student put it, now it is time for us to take it up a notch like the Varsity. I love this competitive environment these youngsters have and I cannot wait to see what next year holds for our team.