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By LARRY GOFFINET
TELL CITY—Tell City’s boys swim team has some quality swimmers but lacks quantity.
There have been as many as 10 boys on the team for some preseason practices, but only six have stayed with it.
One, sophomore Jacob Mowery, is new to the sport. But four are letter winners from last year and the only freshman, Stephen Houle, has been the top boy swimming on Tell City’s age group team for several years.
They specialize in a variety of strokes, too, so though the Marksmen will be able to enter only one boy in some events “I think we’ll have a pretty good swimmer in all of them,” said Coach Mike Page.
Luke Thomas returns in the 100-yard butterfly after placing third in the PAC meet in it last year.
Trent Harding, the team’s only senior, returns in the 100 breaststroke after taking fifth in the PAC last year.
He will also swim the 200 individual medley, in which he placed ninth in the Jasper sectional two years ago.
His second individual event last year was the 500 freestyle, but Houle will man that and the 200 free.
“He’s got a real good freestyle and his motor’s running all the time,” Page said of the freshman.
Aaron Vincent returns in the 100 backstroke after placing sixth in the PAC last year.
Collin Malone will swim the 50 and 100 frees after swimming the 100 and 200 last year.
Vincent, Harding, Thomas and Malone placed second in the PAC in the 200 medley relay last year and will probably swim it again, said Page. “Stephen could also swim it, but he’s swimming the 200, which is the next event.”
Houle will probably join three of the lettermen on the 400 free relay.
Page isn’t sure who will swim the 200 free relay.
The Marksmen have no divers. That and their lack of depth in swimming events (five places are scored in each individual event in dual meets) will make it hard for them to win a lot of meets.
But South Spencer’s team has only four boys. Northeast Dubois and Tecumseh are other teams on Tell City’s schedule that traditionally have small boys squads, so the Marksmen will have good chances to win some meets.
As for the PAC, “I think we’ll be competitive with all the teams,” said Page. “It’s just going to be a depth thing. I thought if we had 10 or 11 boys we’d have a shot at winning it.”
Tell City was second in the PAC last year. Defending champion Pike Central “lost a lot of boys, but I don’t know what they have coming back,” said Page. And Heritage Hills, which was third last year, has only 13 boys.
In the 10-team sectional, Jasper and Bedford North Lawrence, the two largest schools, “will dominate I’m sure,” said Page. “Then I imagine it’ll be a dogfight for the next five or six spots.
“My main thing this year is just to see a lot of improvement as the year goes on.”