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December 16, 2017

CIC swim athletes prepare for Region and State meets

CIC swim athletes prepare for Region and State meets

Eagle River boys and Chugiak girls top contenders

By DAVID MORSE

Published:


Brothers Blaise (left) and Bryce Fox-Icarro have been a tour de force for the Eagle River Wolves boys swim team this season. Senior and sophomore, respectively, the pair have figured into top individual and relay team showings for the Wolves, including last Friday’s sweep over the host Bartlett Bears. Teams have a week ago from competition this week prior the Region Championships, Oct. 30-Nov. 1 at Bartlett.

DAVID MORSE

Eagle River and Chugiak swimming teams saved their best efforts for last with the Wolves sweeping Bartlett and the Mustang girls putting a healthy scare into Dimond, in the regular season finales held Friday.

Chugiak coach Anne Williams said the girls did very well.

“I think this is the closest we’ve been to Dimond,” said the coach of her five-year tenure at Chugiak.

The loss was Chugiak’s only shortfall on the girls’ side this season.

Abby Blackstone and Emmie Jennings were both two-event individual victors, with Blackstone claiming the 200 and 500 freestyle events, both with personal records, and Jennings winning the 100 free and 100 breaststroke.

The Mustangs also won the 200 medley relay.

Things were not close on the boys side however, with Dimond doubling-down on the Mustangs, claiming top finish in each of the eight individual and three relay events.

Eagle River boys and girls teams swept the day against host Bartlett.

Senior Jordyn Bruce was a two-event winner, taking the 100 free and 100 breaststoke. Annika Goozen won the 200 IM, and diver Jami Stone continued her dominance in the region on the one-meter springboard.

Wolves coach Grant Gamblin said he has been very pleased with his team and feels that his boys team may be one to be reckoned with both at regions, in two weeks, and at state the following week.

Gamblin said that a good nucleus of the Wolves team is also on the KNIK Aquatics Club team he coaches outside the high school season.

The five-member core of Bryce Carpenter, Brandon Fast, Nigel Floyd, along with brothers Blaise and Bryce Fox-Icarro provide Gamblin with some freedom to move athletes around among their individual events, and still provide strong relay showings.

Gamblin admitted that areawide coaches would be working hard to put their best athletes into those events that will help teams succeed the most by advancing members to state.

In order to qualify for state, 16 will be chosen in individual events, with the two requirements being a finisher in the region finals and among the top 16 times statewide.

Gamblin hopes to take the school’s greatest number of swimmer to state.

“In my mind, I have a place where I would like them to swim. But we try to take their preferences into mind as well,” he said.

The Eagle River coach said he sees the boys faring well at regions and contending with South and Service among the second tier of schools, behind Dimond, West Valley and Kodiak in the top flight.

Gamblin said he sees the Chugiak girls contenting with Dimond and Kodiak for the girls state title.

Of course, a large part of that will be decided with swimmers qualifying for the big show during the regional meet, to be held Oct. 30-Nov. 1 at Bartlett High School.

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CIC swim athletes prepare for Region and State meets