Low numbers slow Miners in Logan
This weekend at the Logan Invitational, the Park City High School swim team’s biggest foe was not wearing a Speedo or diving off of the starting blocks.
Instead, a round of standardized tests scheduled for both sophomores and juniors at the high school depleted the team to just 10 out of 27 members of the girls’ team and slightly more on the boys’ side. The result was a last-place finish for the girls and fifth place for the boys. Judge Memorial won the girls competition and Mountain Crest took first among the boys.
Even with more boys than girls, Hayes said that many of his top-point grabbers were not there, which seriously affected the team.
Still, head coach Matt Hayes isn’t worried. If the Miners had been full strength, he is confident that they would have fared well against the multi-class competition.
"I am very pleased with their performance," Hayes said.
He was most impressed by the overall success of senior swimmer Tyler Pool, who expects to lead all 3A male competition this year. Judge Memorial’s Andrzej Forys, who was vying with Pool for the top slot has decided not to swim the prep season, leaving Pool unchallenged at the top.
"He’ll be the favorite, although I’m disappointed that he won’t have the challenge. You don’t want first by default," Hayes said.
It also afforded him the opportunity to focus on some of his new freshmen swimmers. He said the underclassmen are among the best that he has had at Park City since he began coaching.
"It’s a chance to see new swimmers better than I normally do. It was good to focus on those kids," Hayes said.
Leading the young contingent is freshman Sara Testa, a newcomer to the area, who swims both the 50- and 100-yard freestyle. Hayes says that she has already broken into the varsity ranks and he looks for her to be among the best by mid-season.
"She did well," Hayes said. "She’s posting some good times."
Hayes will need the help of both young and old swimmers to fare well this Wednesday, when they face Brighton, ranked among the top three schools in 5A competition. He is expecting perfect attendance from the Miners for the first time this season, and feels confident that the team will rise to the occasion.
"We have good quality swimmers who need a challenge," Hayes said.
This is the second home meet in the row where Park City has faced some of the state’s best competition, thanks to one of the strongest schedules in state created by Park City development swim coach, Mike Werner. With Park City also fielding one of the strongest teams in the state, Hayes is finding the challenge is actually helping his team to push themselves harder and perform better.
"The tough competitive schedule, at first, seemed daunting with so many new people," Hayes said. "But now, with a couple of meets over and the new swimmers looking quite good, Mike Werner is looking like a genius."
Park City will host the Brighton Bengals this Wednesday, Oct. 25 at 3 p.m. at the Ecker Hill Aquatic Center.
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