ANDERSON — There was good news and bad news for the Anderson Indians’ boys and girls swim teams Thursday night as they hosted the Pendleton Heights Arabians.
The bad news was the final result, but the good news was both teams showed marked improvement and pleased both coaches with their competitiveness.
The Lady Arabians swimmers came away with a 122-58 win while the boys team defeated the Indians 113-73. “I’m really happy with the way we swam,” Anderson boys coach Jeff Eddy said. “We had a lot of season’s best times.”
Eddy was pleased with two swimmers in particular, Hamilton Smith and Cody Gray. Smith finished second to Pendleton’s Landis Hollingsworth in the 200-yard individual medley and second to Pendleton’s Aric Fredericks in the 100-yard butterfly.
“Hamilton did a real nice job for us,” said Eddy. “He swam well, especially in the butterfly.” Gray finished second in the 100-yard breaststroke to Pendleton’s Ethan Blake. The Arabians won each relay and individual race but Anderson had a second place in nine of the 11 events.
“I was happy with the way we competed tonight,” Pendleton coach Jeff Maydak said. “We had great placings on Tuesday (against Liberty Christian) but our times weren’t good. I’m very happy we had a good set of times tonight.”
Hollingsworth won the 200-yard individual medley and the 100-yard backstroke, and Tyler Brand won the 200 freestyle and the 500 freestyle to help pace the Arabians. Both teams will go on a holiday break from competition, but there won’t a break in preparation.
“If you talk to any high school or college coach, this is the time when hard work starts and it really is focused for conference and sectional,” Maydak said. “We know what we have to do, and we have to make sure we keep our focus on the long-term goals and not get too enamored with taking it easy over break.” The 3-3 Arabians boys will be back in action Jan. 9 against Delta.
The Lady Arabians’ squad was just as dominant, but there were several competitive events against the young Anderson team. The 200-yard medley relay team of Rebekah Monnier, Madison Kordes, Micalah Booher and Breanna Oaldon led off the night with a nearly 2-second win over Anderson’s Aspen Bond, Hannah Boerner, Alexa Bramwell and Ashley Lashbrook.
Pendleton had an individual winner in all 11 events but Anderson had a second place in 10 of them. “We swam very well, it’s the first meet this year we did not look afraid when we were behind,” said Anderson girls coach Dave Renz. “I told them before the meet, I don’t care what the score is, I expect you to fight and compete, drop time and go after it and I thought they did that for the most part. I was pleased with the competitiveness.”
Maydak was just as happy with his squad, especially after being a little disappointed in times from Tuesday’s meet with Liberty Christian. “This is our last meet before heading into winter break,” said Maydak. “I warned them that tonight’s results will have a reflection in how hard practices will be during the break. I think they responded well, I was really happy with our times tonight, we had a lot of personal bests.”
Individually, Maydak praised Madison Brand and Madison Kordes. “Both Brand and Kordes swam out of their minds tonight,” Maydak said. Kordes won the 200 freestyle by 7 seconds and bested Boerner by three ticks in the 100 breaststroke, while Brand won both the 50 and 500 freestyle events.
In the girls diving competition, PH’s Taylor Fiew finished with 234.55 points while teammate Kylee Lloyd scored 172. On the boys side, Pendleton’s Dylan McCammon scored 308.4 points with several impressive dives. Mats Klink had 161.65 points and Anderson’s Bryant Swinford had 155.20 to place third.
Pendleton is now 8-1 and will face Delta on Jan. 9. Anderson is 2-3 and will be in action again on Jan. 11 in the North Central Conference meet.