Following the loss of AllAmerican Staci Schrecongost, the women’s swim team will look to both returners and newcomers to make an impact on the team this season.
Head coach Chris Rhodes said that seniors Charlotte Drozda and Cheyenne Kressley, as well as the juniors on the team, are going to be essential in squad leadership.
“We brought in some really good girls that have state high school experience,” Rhodes said.
The team’s youth has the head coach excited for both present and future. Rhodes stated between the returners and the people they brought, everyone knows what big meets are about.
“We are preparing very well. If we continue to do that then we are going to swim well,” Rhodes said.
Rhodes also looks forward to the changing of programs from the newcomers, whether it’s from high school or club, because there has been a lot of success with it in the past.
A Ukranian transfer named Anastasiia Semkiv is expected to have an immediate impact on the team this season.
Other incoming freshman that Rhodes thinks will have an impact and have lots of potential to improve are Kelsey Albrecht and Casey Tokarski.
Rhodes said he sees no reason why everyone — all the way from the fastest person on the team to the slowest person on the team — can’t improve.
“If each individual can step up, then the team is going to step up,” he stated.
Without hesitation Rhodes said this team can improve upon last season’s seventh place finish at the conference meet. Rhodes will look towards his returners who have been consistent and swam and placed well at the conference meet to lead the team to a better finish.
Rhodes noted most of the team has come into the season in pretty good shape and they are training without much rest in between sets right now.
He looks to the mid-season meet at Wooster as an indicator for where the team is amongst the conference and how they will have responded to the training at that point.
This year Rhodes said that his challenges as a coach will to be keep everyone focused on their goals as individuals as well as the team goals.
“The great thing about my job is I am surrounded by great people and when you’re surrounded by great people, great things happen.”
The women open up their season in the McComb Fieldhouse natatorium on Oct. 16 against Indiana (Pa.) at 6 p.m.
Michael McLaughlin is a Staff Writer for The Spectator.