CORUNNA — Corunna girls swimming and diving coach Amy Golombisky is excited about her squad for 2019, but realizes the Cavaliers are invading unchartered waters.
Corunna went 8-7 in dual meets last fall as a member of the Independent Swim Conference. This year, they’ll face powerhouses Fenton and Owosso after joining the Flint Metro League.
“We’re in a much more difficult league than we were last year,” Golombisky said. “And so what I’m trying to accomplish is really trying to build our team again and focusing on the bonding and supporting one another so that we can really build strong athletes this season. We’re only going to be losing two seniors and I’m really excited about having nine sophomores, so we’re just trying to concentrate on building a strong, well-led team. I’m looking for a lot of growth and a lot of ego-building.”
Corunna opened the season with a 117-69 non-conference victory over Caro.
Golombisky said Corunna’s success will depend on its dedication and commitment.
“I think there will be a lot of self discovery for these girls, because I think they will be surprised at how well they do,” Golombisky said. “They have more experience. We have quite a few who have been involved in club swimming and we have quite a few who have attended extra-curricular camp outside our school and even went to some college camps.”
The Cavaliers will be counting on three key returners — Piper LePino, a junior, who will swim the breaststroke and individual medley; senior Ally Vowell, a standout in the 50-yard freestyle and in the relays; and senior Marissa Jackson, who swims the backstroke as well as the 100-yard and 200-yard freestyle events.
The Corunna boys won 11 times during the winter and won the ISC title. The girls would like to craft a similar season.
“We want to win more meets than the guys, that’s for sure,” Vowell said. “We want to set the bar high and beat the guys in the amount of meets that we’ve won.”
Vowell, a four-year swimmer, said her goal in the 50-freestyle is to get under 26 seconds.
“I want to try and get down to 25 seconds and if I beat the (school) record (of 25.59), that’s cool but I want to get down to 25 seconds,” Vowell said.
Vowell will also be swimming the 200 free relay and 400 free relay.
“I’d like to break the backstroke record (1:05.56) and then the 200 medley relay and 400 free relay,” Jackson said. “We have a lot of talent this year. We’ve definitely improved since last year.”
Golombisky said two sophomores will make some major splashes this fall — Maddie Kett, in the 500 freestyle and other events, and Audrey Mitchell, who will swim the individual medley and butterfly.
There’se also freshman Kaylee Siddens, who swims the individual medley and breaststroke.
Kett placed first in four events in Corunna’s win over Caro — the 200 free, 500 free, 200 free relay and 400 free relay.
“I think our goal is just to get closer,” Kett said. “I’m really hoping to break the (school) record up there on the board for both the 500 free (5:31) and the 200 free (2:02).”
In diving, Amara Jackson returns after being injured last season. She will be joined by sophomore Mariah Hall, another gifted athlete off the board.
Last season: 8-7, fourth Independent Swim Conference
Head coach: Amy Golombisky
Key returners: Piper LePino, Jr., breaststroke, IM; Ally Vowell, Sr., 50 free, medley relay, 400 free relay; Marissa Jackson, Sr., backstroke, 100 free, 200 free; Amara Jackson, Jr., diver; Mariah Hall, So., diving.
Key newcomers: Maddie Kett, So., 500 free; 200 free, relays; Audrey Mitchell, IM, butterfly; Kaylee Siddens, Fr., IM, breaststroke.