POTTSVILLE Tamaqua recovered from a slow first half of the meet to take the team title at Saturday's Schuylkill League Swimming Championships held at the D. H. H. Lengel Natatorium.

Freshman Joann Butkus earned gold in the 200 freestyle (2:03:90) and the 50 breaststroke, breaking the league record in the latter with a time of 32:56.

"It's great," Butkus said. "I hope I can keep improving. I'm very happy that I can do what I can for the team."

"We are very supportive of each other and I think that is what makes us so strong. I'm very proud of how we've done this year, and I hope we can keep the ball rolling."

Senior Schuyler Schmidt gained another victory for Tamaqua in the 100 freestyle (57:99), and Sophomore Caroline Kanaskie earned a win in the 50 backstroke (31:09).

Adding to these wins were numerous silver and bronze finishes, contributing to a complete team effort that defined an extremely successful year for the Lady Raiders.

"It's been a phenomenal year," said Tamaqua Coach Eric Lech. "It's been one that we've been working towards since I've been here for the last eleven years. It's nice for them to achieve both a Schuylkill League title and a Schuylkill League meet win. It's a big deal for them."

The Tamaqua boys finished second overall, with gold medal victories from senior Nate Leibensperger in the 50 breaststroke (30:65) and freshman Jordan Frank in the 100 breaststroke (1:06:15).

"The season is going well," said Leibensperger. "I'm dropping time in the events that I like to swim. The whole team is doing great and I like to see that."

"The guys came in with very solid performances," said Coach Lech. "We had a very good day today with a lot of best times."

The Panther Valley girls also earned some individual gold as senior Alexia Follweiler had pair of wins in the 100 butterfly (1:04:74) and the 100 IM (1:05:88). Another gold medal came from senior Karoline Vavra in the 100 breaststroke (1:10:66).

"Everyone was well prepared for the meet," said Vavra. "That was a tenth off my best time, so I'm pretty excited."

"I'm really proud of all of our girls," Follweiler added. "Our freshman really stepped up and I'm really glad that we have the coach that we do. We wouldn't have been able to accomplish anything without her."

The Panther Valley girls had a fourth place finish as a team.

"I had all of my swimmers get a season best time today," said Panther Valley Coach Geri Vavra. "Historically we always do well with our time drops at the league meet and they did it again.

"Our seniors wanted to go out on a high note. They obviously love the sport and they've been very dedicated to it for a very long time. They didn't disappoint at all. I couldn't be happier."

GIRLS

TEAM SCORES

Tamaqua 355, Pottsville 332, Blue Mountain 217, Panther Valley 159, Mahanoy Area 147.5, Schuylkill Haven 107, North Schuylkill 94.5

INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

200 Medley Relay - 1. Pottsville (Eagan, Cougle, Brilla, Naradko) 2:00:18, 2. Panther Valley (Van Horn, Vavra, Follweiler, Erbe) 2:00:20, 3. Tamaqua (Kanaskie, Trovinger, Butkus, Schmidt) 2:00:72

200 Freestyle - 1. Joann Butkus (Tamaqua) 2:03:90, 2. Briawna Cougle (Pottsville) 2:09:02, 3. Caroline Kanaskie (Tamaqua) 2:09:91

200 IM - 1. Lauren Brilla (Pottsville) 2:22:19, 2. Emilee N. Mallams (Tri-Valley) 2:24:67, 3. Schuyler Schmidt (Tamaqua) 2:27:01

100 Butterfly - 1. Alexia Follweiler (Panther Valley) 1:04:74, 2. Meghan Greenawalt (Blue Mountain) 1:08:05, 3. Olivia Hower (Mahanoy Area) 1:10:49

50 Freestyle - 1. Logan Baylor (Millersburg) 25:32, 2. Karoline Vavra (Panther Valley) 25:35, 3. Marina Barrineau (Blue Mountain) 25:91

100 Backstroke - 1. Logan Baylor (Millersburg) 1:03:50, 2. Emily N. Mallams (Tri-Valley) 1:05:01, 3. Brittany Erbe (Panther Valley) 1:06:62

50 Breaststroke - 1. Joann Butkus (Tamaqua) 32.56 (New League Record), 2. Maggie Mansell (Mahanoy Area) 33.72, 3. Colleen Brennan (Pottsville) 34:05

200 Freestyle Relay - 1. Blue Mountain (Greenawalt, Boran, Woleschok, Barrineau) 1:47:10, 2. Panther Valley (Erbe, Van Horn, Follweiler, Vavra) 1:47:11, 3. Tamaqua (Nowacki, Schmidt, Amey, Butkus) 1:47:56

500 Freestyle - 1. Lauren Brilla (Pottsville) 5:39:62, 2. Miranda Amey (Tamaqua) 5:47:80, 3. Brittany Erbe (Panther Valley) 5:56:13

100 IM - 1. Alexia Follweiler (Panther Valley) 1:05:88, 2. Megan Wagner (Tamaqua) 1:10:75, 3. Samantha Lindsay (Halifax) 1:12:00

50 Butterfly - 1. Maria Naradko (Pottsville) 30:52, 2. Deanna DeWire (Tamaqua) 30:58, 3. Alex Chimahusky (Minersville) 32:30

100 Freestyle - 1. Schuyler Schmidt (Tamaqua) 57:99, 2. Catherine Amoriello (Halifax) 58:10, 3. Briawna Cougle (Pottsville) 58:40

50 Backstroke - 1. Caroline Kanaskie (Tamaqua) 31:09, 2. Cassie Eagan (Pottsville) 31:77, 3. Shay Staskowski (Blue Mountain) 32:35

100 Breaststroke - 1. Karoline Vavra (Panther Valley) 1:10:66, 2. Colleen Brennan (Pottsville) 1:14:65, 3. Maggie Mansell (Mahanoy Area) 1:15:00

400 Freestyle Relay - 1. Pottsville (Eagan, Naradko, Cougle, Brilla) 3:56:12, 2. Tamaqua (Nowacki, Amey, DeWire, Kanaskie) 4:05:63, 3. Mahanoy Area (Evancho, Kufrovich, Scheeler, Hower) 4:09:24

BOYS

TEAM SCORES

Pottsville 352, Tamaqua 303, Schuylkill Haven 264, Blue Mountain 184, North Schuylkill 79, Mahanoy Area 56, Panther Valley 34

INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

200 Medley Relay - 1. Pottsville (Miller, Matulevich, Leahy, Boran) 1:44:78, 2. Schuylkill Haven (Slotterback, Spotts, Bayliff, Schultz) 1:49:27, 3. Tamaqua (DeWire, Leibensperger, Frank, Tuckett) 1:49:61

200 Freestyle - 1. Cole Davis (Millersburg) 1:53:77, 2. Austin Bayliff (Schuylkill Haven) 1:57:87, 3. Tyler Montgomery (Pottsville) 2:00:77

200 IM - 1. Thomas Boran (Blue Mountain) 2:07:76, 2. Kevin Wang (Pottsville) 2:14:73, 3. Sean Carroll (Blue Mountain) 2:17:67

100 Butterfly - 1. Drew Leahy (Pottsville) 53:94, 2. Ian Lloyd (Millersburg) 1:00:53, 3. Michael Sloboda (Panther Valley) 1:03:30

50 Freestyle - 1. John Matulevich (Pottsville) 22:45, 2. Matthew Cullen (Weatherly) 23:14, 3. Dylan Slotterback (Schuylkill Haven) 24:35

100 Backstroke - 1. Sean Spotts (Schuylkill Haven) 1:00:33, 2. Dane DeWire (Tamaqua) 1:02:18, 3. Edward J. Miller (Pottsville) 1:02:49

50 Breaststroke - 1. Nate Leibensperger (Tamaqua) 30:65, 2. Kelsey Dorman (Millersburg) 31:78, 3. Alex Sirkot (Weatherly) 31:90

200 Freestyle Relay - 1. Pottsville (Montgomery, Miller, Boran, Wang) 1:36:93, 2. Blue Mountain (Can, Carroll, Stencovage, Boran) 1:38:64, 3. Tamaqua (Yachera, Frank, DeWire, Tuckett) 1:40:69

500 Freestyle - 1. Thomas Boran (Blue Mountain) 5:16:77, 2. Tyler Montgomery (Pottsville) 5:25:99, 3. Vincent Palladino (Schuylkill Haven) 5:42:19

100 IM - 1. Drew Leahy (Pottsville) 57:82 (New Area Record), 2. Cole Davis (Millersburg) 58:55, 3. Jordan Frank (Tamaqua) 1:02:11

50 Butterfly - 1. John Matulevich (Pottsville) 24:01 (New Area Record), 2. Sam Tuckett (Tamaqua) 27:83, 3. Evan Rajchel (Pottsville) 28:33

100 Freestyle - 1. Kevin Wang (Pottsville) 51:34, 2. Austin Bayliff (Schuylkill Haven) 52:05, 3. Matthew Cullen (Weatherly) 52:18

50 Backstroke - 1. Edward J. Miller (Pottsville) 28:23, 2. Andrew Kappenhagen (Halifax) 30:43, 3. Jake Kropp (Tamaqua) 30:89

100 Breaststroke - 1. Jordan Frank (Tamaqua) 1:06:15, 2. Sean Carroll (Blue Mountain) 1:08:18, 3. Nate Leibensperger (Tamaqua) 1:08:61

400 Freestyle Relay - 1. Pottsville (Matulevich, Montgomery, Wang, Leahy) 3:26:90 (New Meet Record), 2. Schuylkill Haven (Bayliff, Spotts, Slotterback, Schultz) 3:43:04, 3. Tamaqua (Yachera, Smith, Troxell, Butkus) 3:56:47