Raiders' Butkus is golden
The Schuylkill League Swim Championships were held Saturday at Martz Hall with swimmers from Tamaqua, Weatherly and Marian all grabbing gold medals.
The Blue Raiders were the only area team to enter an entire team in the meet while Weatherly and Marian entered individuals in several events.
Tamaqua had three individual girls, two boys and a girls' relay walk away from the pool with first-place finishes. Meanwhile, Weatherly and Marian had an individual each take a first.
Tamaqua's Joann Butkus proved to be the most impressive on the day, as she took firsts in the 50 free and 100 free, while also achoring the gold medal 400 freestyle relay from Tamaqua.
Raider coach Ashley Stanek had high praise for Butkus.
"Joann had a really good meet on Saturday," Stanek said. "I know one of the race wins that she had was by one one hundredth of a second, so she had a really nice finish in order to pull that off. But she works extremely hard and deserves what she gets."
Butkus' teammates Danielle DeCindio (50 fly) and Miranda Amey (500 free) also out-performed the rest of their respective fields to win their events. In the boys competition, Gage Whalen (100 IM) and Jake Kropp (50 back) also managed to grab gold.
Tamaqua's second place finishes came from Caroline Kanaskie (200 free), Carly Trovinger (50 breast), Amey (200 IM), and Whalen (50 breast). Both the girls and boys' 200 medley relay teams managed to come in second, as well.
Thirds for the Blue Raiders were won by Trovinger (100 breast), Kanaskie (100 back), and Kropp (100 back), and the 400 freestyle relay for the boys program.
"It was nice to see that so many of our swimmers had accomplished personal bests," said Stanek. "They put in a lot of hard work this season so far to this point and we are having a great season. We're trying to remain optimistic and hope for the best as the season goes along.
"Everyone is very supportive of each other and that's a great thing for them to continue to do as a team."
Weatherly's Alex Sirkot took first place in the 50 breast event while Marian's Sabrina Krupko was first in the 50 back. Thirds were won by Weatherly's Jacob Sirkot (50 back) and Alex Sirkot (100 breast).