Rainy skies and an outdoor swimming pool did not bode well for the spectators, but the participants barely noticed.
The Camas and North County girls swimmers from Battle Ground, Hockinson and Prairie were too busy racing Evergreen, Heritage, Mountain View and Union. Before the first event began under dark clouds, Camas and North County head coach had just a few words of advice.
“If you hear thunder, or you see lightning, swim faster,” he said.
The girls took Bemis’ words to heart Thursday, at the Kessid Center in Fisher’s Landing. Camas defeated Evergreen 140-16, Heritage 134-26 and Mountain View 87-82. North County topped Evergreen 125-25 and Heritage 106-53. The only team Camas and North County could not catch was Union.
“You win dual meets with your seconds, thirds and fourths,” Bemis said. “You can get first in every event and still lose a dual meet. We beat Evergreen, Heritage and Mountain View with our depth.”
Julieann Reed earned second for Camas in the 50 freestyle, with a time of 27.76 seconds. Ashlyn Price followed in fourth place (28.18), and Emily Hall snatched sixth (28.89). Price (1:10.85), Carolyn Foster (1:12.16) and Brittany Worley (1:13.63) finished 4-5-6 in the 100 free.
Kayla Yraceburu took third in the 500 free (6:06.19) and fourth in the 200 free (2:18.32). Stephanie Strouse notched third in the 100 breaststroke (1:23.86) and sixth in the 100 free (1:04.55). Hall finished fourth in the 100 free (1:03.63) and Reed placed fifth in the 100 back (1:12.07).
Hockinson’s Bailee Christiansen won the 100 backstroke (1:06.21). She also helped North County capture third in the 200 medley (2:05.86) and 200 freestyle relay (1:50.46) races, along with Julia Sanders, Darien Hiller and C.J. Schiller.
Sanders also finished second in the 200 individual medley (2:15.29) and the 100 breaststroke (1:11.60). Hiller took third in the 100 freestyle (1:00.80) and fourth in the 100 breaststroke (1:24.76). Prairie’s Shelby Harder placed third in the 100 backstroke (1:07.90).
Since Mountain View is now in the league, the 87-82 victory was the most satisfying to the Papermakers. Union has moved up to the 4A.
Camas has another tough challenge Thursday, when it faces Columbia River at Propstra Pool in Vancouver.
“Mountain View is one of our arch rivals, and we get them and Columbia River right out of the gate,” Bemis said. “River could be the best team in all of Southwest Washington, but we’ll compete with them. If their top seven or eight swim to their performances, I don’t know if we have enough depth to catch them.”
Bemis is pleased to see more Camas sophomores and freshmen emerging behind the seniors. He hopes it will pay off for the Papermakers at districts and state.