BREMEN — This year Bremen’s swim teams have shifted their focus a bit in practice.
The Lions are sweating some of the finer details, and the change has already done them some good.
Bremen claimed a pair of wins over visiting Rochester in a boys and girls dual swim meet at home Thursday. The Lions won 98-86, and the Lady Lions were victorious, 97-89.
“We’re focusing more on intensity and endurance this year and a lot more on technique work, and I think it’s paid off for some of them already,” said Bremen head swim coach Meredith Eakins.
“A lot of our swimmers are starting where they left off last year, so I’m very happy with that.”
It was the first win of the young season for the boys’ swim team and the second for the girls. After a pair of tough losses swimming against big programs Northridge and Penn on the road in Middlebury Tuesday, it felt good for the Lions to pick on someone their own size Thursday.
“What I told the team when we swam with Penn at Northridge is we have 450, 490 kids at our school, and we’re also competing to get kids from all the other sports. Those schools get to pick up whatever kids they want, they have year-round feeder teams and everything else,” Eakins said. “I said to go out there and swim your best and take places from them or keep up with them in some races, but… I also said to focus on your times, not on them. Especially for the boys because I didn’t want them to get discouraged their first meet.”
The Lions were led Thursday by Nolan Filchak’s clean sweep of four first places in the butterfly and the backstroke as well as on Bremen’s winning medley and 400 free relay teams. Joe Zeltwanger won the 50 free and was a winner on the medley relay team, and he bounced back from a disappointing false start in the 100 free with a winning turn on the Lion’s winning 400 free relay team. Jack Fanning earned victories in the 100 and 200 free swims and on Bremen’s 200 free relay team, while Krent Hueni won the 500 free and swam legs for his team’s winning medley relay and 400 free relay squads, and Will Serf also notched a trio of wins in the individual medley and on the 200 and 400 free relay teams.
“The boys are strong. We have a strong group of boys, but our numbers are where we hurt,” said Eakins.
“They rise to the challenge, and they always pull it out at the end. It’s good to know you can count on those guys every meet to put in their best effort. They’re dropping time left and right, so I’m very pleased with how they’ve started the season.”
The Lady Lions’ biggest points producers were Katie Lafferty with wins in the 50 and 100 freestyle races and on her team’s winning medley and 200 free relay teams, and Mattie Hershberger, who won the IM, placed second in the breaststroke and helped Bremen to wins in the medley and 200 free relays along with Lafferty.
“Those two girls and a few of the others, I think they’re putting in harder work in practice, and they’re seeing the times come off already, and I think when they get to the end of this year they’re going to see even more come off,” Eakins said. “The same goes with them — they put in their best effort every single meet. They want to win, they’re out there to win, and if they don’t they give it their best effort.”
• BREMEN 98, ROCHESTER 86
200 medley relay: 1. Bremen (Krent Hueni, Stuart Schmeltz, Nolan Filchak, Joe Zeltwanger) 1:46.51, 2. Rochester 1:51.19; 200 free: 1. Jack Fanning (B) 2:04.21, 2. Sawyer Cripe (R) 2:09.92; 200 individual medley: 1. Will Serf (B) 2:17.8, 2. Schmeltz (B) 2:17.86; 50 free: 1. Zeltwanger (B) :23.2, 2. Steven Newton (R) :23.91; Diving: 1. Cameron Bugno (R) 177.35, 2. Tyler Byerline (R) 125.4; 100 fly: 1. Filchak (B) :54.92, 2. Patrick Kays (R) :56.66; 100 free: 1. Fanning (B) :54.3, 2. Jace Bixler (R) :57.95; 500 free: 1. Hueni (B) 5:19.28, 2. Patrick Kays (R) 5:23.56; 200 free relay: 1. Bremen (Fanning, Kris Wickens, Schmeltz, Serf) 1:44.07; 100 backstroke: 1. Filchak (B) :56.93, 2. Newton (R) :57.64; 100 breaststroke: 1. Schmeltz (B) 1:08.85, 2. Cripe (R) 1:15.72; 400 free relay: 1. Bremen (Serf, Hueni, Zeltwanger, Filchak) 3:27.5, 2. Rochester, 3:44.9.
• BREMEN 97, ROCHESTER 89
200 medley relay: 1. Bremen (Bailey Richards, Jess Bollenbacher, Mattie Hershberger, Katie Lafferty) 2:08.06, 2. Rochester, 2:13.14; 200 free: 1. Alison Webb (R) 2:22.27; 2. Kerygan LaVine (B) 2:28.35; 200 individual medley: 1. Hershberger (B) 2:34.37, 2. Anna Bearss (R) 2:42.91; 50 freestyle: 1. Lafferty (B) :25.3, 2. Sammy Ruppert (R) :29.82; Diving: 1. Quinn Bixler (R) 200.8, 2. Traci Burch (R) 116.3; 100 butterfly: 1. Anna Bearss (R) 1:14.35, 2. Kaitlyn Ahlenius (B) 1:21.74; 100 freestyle: 1. Lafferty (B) :55.27, 2. Erica Abbott (R) 1:02.95; 500 free: 1. Ruppert (R) 6:36.91, 2. Lacey Miller (B) 6:44.97; 200 free relay: 1. Bremen (Hershberger, Ahlenius, Amanda Nusbaum, Lafferty) 1:53.51, 2. Rochester, 2:08.58; 100 backstroke: 1. Abbott (R) 1:10.49, 2. Richards (B) 1:12.89; 100 breaststroke: 1. Webb (R) 1:18.37, 2. Hershberger (B) 1:18.63; 400 free relay: 1. Rochester (Bearss, Webb, Ruppert, Abbott) 4:27.64, 2. Bremen 4:33.13.