Thomas Stone swimming coach Amy Kartzman knew that the talent at the top of her girls' lineup would give the Cougars fierce relay teams this season.
Saturday at the College of Southern Maryland, Thomas Stone needed those relays to edge Calvert, 87-82, for its first dual-meet victory of the season.
The meet went back and forth throughout, and Calvert had a one-point lead heading into the final event, the 400 freestyle relay. The winner of the final race would claim the meet.
As close as the meet had been, however, the relay did not follow suit. Thomas Stone junior Jennifer Olsen and seniors Mary Scott, Jessica Lohman and Heather Vance won the race by about 10 seconds. That same foursome won the 200 medley relay by eight seconds and combined to post seven individual firsts.
Scott won the 100 breaststroke and 200 individual medley; Vance, the Cougars' sprinter, won the 50 and 100 freestyle events; Lohman took the 100 fly and 100 back; and Olsen won the 500 freestyle.
Kartzman has the good fortune of having her top four girls use their various specialties to fit perfectly into the 200 medley relay. "It really works out nicely," the coach said.
The Cougars' 400 free relay B team of junior Pam Wachrathit and freshmen Kim Ramos, Ashley Blakely and Erin Blakely placed third to give Thomas Stone some insurance points.
"We're working on getting some depth this year and trying to get some seconds and thirds to back up these firsts," Kartzman said.
The Thomas Stone boys could not complete a sweep, however, falling to Calvert, 95-72. Stone got victories from junior Chris Bourassa in the 200 individual medley and 100 freestyle, Blake Hamilton in the 100 breaststroke and Billy Chichester in the 100 backstroke.
Rams' Girls Win, Barely McDonough swept Westlake on Saturday to remain perfect on the season. But it wasn't easy for the Rams' girls.
The Rams trailed previously unbeaten Westlake by two points heading into the final race, but they took first and second in the 400 freestyle relay to win, 88-81.
"It was our relay teams that won it," McDonough Coach Chris Hammond said. "I knew it would be a tough match, so I decided to go with strong relays, and I'm really glad that I did."
The Rams' foursome of freshman Karen Elder, junior Megan Massey, junior Molly Simpson and sophomore Krystina Weaver combined to take both the 400 and 200 freestyle relays. McDonough's B relays took second and third in the events, respectively.
"The main thing that was good about the meet for the girls was that it was a group effort," Hammond said. "Everything was about everybody working together, especially with the relay teams."
In the boys' meet, McDonough senior captain Jon Michela remained perfect on the season with victories in the 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly. Freshman Camden Fuller won the 200 individual medley and the 100 backstroke, and sophomore Nick Pryde won the 500 freestyle. The Rams' boys took won eight races en route to a 96-67 victory.
The McDonough boys' relay teams also excelled, taking three firsts, a second and two thirds.
Panthers Stay Perfect
The Patuxent boys remained unbeaten Saturday morning, thanks in large part to their depth. La Plata won five individual races and two relays, but the Panthers improved to 3-0 with a 95-73 victory.
Patuxent's girls improved to 2-1 with a 101-68 victory.
Erik Wiegand (200 individual medley, 100 backstroke), Sam Fleming (100 freestyle and 100 breaststroke) and Stephanie Stahl (200 individual medley, 500 freestyle) were double individual winners for La Plata.