Deep McDonogh captures AIS crown


February 28, 1993|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,Staff Writer

Most of the season, the girls on McDonogh's swim team have had to compete against the boys in the Maryland Scholastic Association. But not yesterday.

Playing host to the sixth annual Association of Independent Schools Championship, the Eagles only had to swim against other girls.

With plenty of depth and strong relay teams, the Eagles slipped past four-time defending champ Severn and up-and-coming Notre Dame Prep to win the title. With 251 points, McDonogh outdistanced second-place NDP (211) and third-place Severn (133). Mercy and IND tied for fourth with 89 points.

"This meet is a lot of fun," said Eagles senior Nikki Cunningham. "As much as I hate to admit it, guys in general are faster swimmers, so it's good to be girls against girls sometimes."

Two Eagles won individual titles. Amanda Kuehl, the only diver competing, captured 187.8 points and Caroline Wolven won the 200 freestyle by less than a second over Severn's Jenni Phillips.

But the Eagles picked up most of their points in the relays, which provide double the points of the individual races. Lynn Maciolek, Sarah Folkemer, Cunningham and Tanya Leopold won the 200 medley relay while Leopold, Cunningham and Kuehl joined Becky Leidig to win the 200 free relay. Maciolek, Folkemer, Wolven and Tanya Walentowicz won the 400 free relay.

"The fact that we had a diver and no one else did was a cushion for us," said McDonogh coach Scott Ward. "I knew NDP had a lot of talented swimmers at that school. They were able to field a good team, and I thought it might be close."

In their first year as a team, the Pirates competed in only a few dual meets but had several strong club swimmers. The Pirates also had two individual winners, Shannon Curreri in the 100 butterfly and Emily Rohr in the 100 breast stroke.

But the Pirates also medaled in all the relays, including finishing second in both freestyle relays.

"Actually, we didn't have any expectations coming in here," said NDP coach Michele Loeffler. "We've only been swimming for a month and a half. There's not that much out there for girls.

"For the guys it's such an organized sport. All the MSA teams have organized swimming, but the AIS doesn't. That's why this meet is so great. I'm really happy they have this."

Although Severn saw its string of titles snapped, the Admirals did boast the Swimmer of the Meet, Joan Chidester.

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