Ericson, McCarter pace Riptides
Leavenworth-based swim team finishes regular season with splash
The Leavenworth Riptides swim club held its own in the league championships Friday at Turner High School in Kansas City, Kan.
The team, which is composed of local elementary, middle and high school students, finished fourth out of six different teams in the area including Lake Quivira, Lake Forest, Turner, Piper and Bonner Springs.
Nobody made a bigger splash than 16-year-old Andy Ericson of Lansing, who placed first in the 18-and-under boys freestyle, butterfly and individual medley. Ericson was awarded top swimmer in his age group and also anchored the Riptides' 18-and-under co-ed medley relay to a fourth-place finish.
Alissa McCarter was the Riptides' other top swimmer recipient for her age group. She finished first in the 6-and-under girls freestyle and third in the 6-and-under girls back stroke.
Other first-place finishers were Lauren Jaqua in the 14-and-under girls freestyle, Kassidi Livingston in the 18-and-under girls butterfly and the relay team of Mackenzie O'Donnell, Madison O'Donnell, Mekayla DePaolis and Haven Stutz, who won the 8-and-under girls medley relay.
12-year-old Jimmy Bormolini, who had not lost an individual event all season was on vacation Friday and did not participate.
Coach John Denney said he was proud of the Riptides' efforts all season, going up against lots of swimmers that compete year round.
"We're really, truly a recreational team," Denney said. "But a lot of swimmers made some big strides this summer."
He said lots of kids dropped four or five seconds off the times they began the season with.
"Even Andy (Ericson) shed one second off his butterfly," Denney said. "For him to shave a second off, that's a lot."