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Jefferson Forest made a couple of statements with twin victories over Brookville, at the Bedford Area YMCA.
By way of their 68-26 win, the guys declared, “We’re State contenders.”
The gals, in their 48-45 win, stated, “We can beat you with one arm tied behind our back.”
The Cavs won in dominant fashion behind a pair of individual wins by the Nowakowski brothers and by Alex Soderman, who got his double-win all by his lonesome.
The Nowakowskis continue a family tradition of swimming at JF. Blake picked up a win in the 200 yard individual medley (2:06.93), and big brother Chad took the 100 yard backstroke (0:57.96).
Soderman, an exchange student from Sweden, nabbed victories in the 100 breaststroke (1:02.56) and 100 freestyle (49.70 seconds).
The swimming Swede certainly made his mark in this meet.
But the big excitement came courtesy of a Bee swimmer.
Kemp Pettyjohn nipped JF swimmers in the two most exciting events of the evening.
In the 200 freestyle, Pettyjohn swam a 1:44.61, which was 0.04 seconds faster than Caleb Williams.
In the 100 butterfly, Pettyjohn edged JF’s Carter Watson. His time of 54.25 seconds was a mere 0.16 seconds better than Watson, a state champ last year in the 100 free. Pettyjohn and Watson were a full 14 seconds ahead of the rest of the field.
Watson picked up a win in the 50 yard free, smoking the field with a time of 22.70 seconds.
Williams showed off his endurance, cruising to a win in the 500 yard freestyle, with a time of 5:06.24.
Hunter Morris aided the Cav cause, picking up key second place finishes in the 200 IM and the 100 free.
With that lineup, it seems certain that JF has a great shot at improving the third-place team finish it garnered at States last year.
“I like my guys to win States,” said JF Head Coach Jonathan Templeton. “They’re very confident. If we’re going to do it, this is the team.”
On the ladies side, JF was missing Susanna White, who was a double state champion last year. White had a family commitment and was unable to swim against the Bees.
Not to worry, though, as others stepped up to the plate. For instance, Ainsley Reed had a big night. Reed took first place in the 200 individual medley. Her time of 2:22.63 was comfortably ahead of runnerup (and Bee) Annie Dailey. Reed also won the 100 yard freestyle handily. She clocked in at 58.93 seconds, the only one to break the one-minute mark.
Hannah Owen and Lindsay Bohn each picked up a nice win. Owen turned in a time of 1:17.94 in winning the 100 yard butterfly, while Bohn won the breaststroke, with a time of 1:19.28, seven seconds ahead of the competition.
Templeton stated that he is aiming for a first place finish in the district for his ladies.