Reflecting on the pool
Hawthorne’s success highlights summer in the pool
When the Prince-Mont Swim League 2017 season officially came to a close with the completion of the annual All-Star meet at West Arundel, all six Southern Maryland teams that compete in the league each summer found something that they could hang their goggles on regardless of win-loss records.
Hawthorne Country Club enjoyed a perfect run through the league’s Division B dual meet slate and then capped the summer with an easy victory at the Division B championships at Strathmore Bel Pre. Several Gators also performed well at All-Stars and longtime coach Mary Jane Cupples
could not have been more pleased with a season that will likely see her team promoted to the Division A ranks next summer.
“I could not have asked for a better summer,” said Cupples, who completed her 20th season at the helm of HCC. “Hawthorne is a huge team but we are a close family team. It was a great year and an honor to have such great swimmers, athletes and coaches. We’re ready for Division A. A lot of our swimmers swim year-round and will continue to do so. I am excited for next year and the chance to shake up Division A.”
Hawthorne only had five swimmers age out this summer, with Sarah Denault, Savannah Maddox, Chase McClure, Tyler Mudd and Liam Vienneau comprising the list. Denault was a member of the Gators for 14 seasons, McClure was part of the squad for 12 and Vienneau was on HCC for eight years. Both Maddox and Mudd were two-year swimmers for the Gators.
“Sarah is a hard worker,” Cupples said. “She always had a smile on her face and is willing to swim anything for the team. She is a huge part of the HCC family and she will continue to be around to cheer on her younger brother, Alex. Chase is a born leader and is very coachable. She will be missed for her hard work in an out of the pool. She is a true competitor. Liam was high point swimmer for HCC several times and he can swim any event.”
Hawthorne may have bid a fond farewell to those five swimmers, but the Gators will have Conor Vienneau back for three more summers. Throughout the dual meet slate, the Charles County Championships and then divisionals he went undefeated in his first season in the 15-18 boys bracket. A rising sophomore at La Plata High School, Vienneau finished fourth in both the 100-yard freestyle and 100 individual medley and fifth in the 50 backstroke at All-Stars. Esther Dugan won the 13-14 girls 50 free (26.04) and was second in both 50 breast and 100 IM and the homeschooled swimmer stays in that age group next summer.
Smallwood Village went 3-2 in the Prince-Mont Division B dual meets and then finished fifth in the Division B championship meet. Coach Jeff Rivenburg was content with the season, although his older daughter, Julia Rivenburg, spent her final season in the pool with the Marlins and will join the coaching staff next summer. Both Mya Rivernburg, a rising junior at North Point High School and Aidan Rivenburg, a rising seventh grader, will be back as will Clayton Jameson, who emerged as a budding star with a triple at All-Stars, taking the 11-12 boys 50 free (26.22), 50 back (30.60) and 100 IM (1:05.13).
Other HCC swimmers such as Cole Rapczynski, Clinton Cupples, Kaeleigh Cupples, Addy Donnick, Samuel Dugan Kristopher Schueller, Megan Schueller, Jadyn Woolsey and Alexandra Tompkins also earned berths in the All-Star meet and will return to the Gators next summer for their first taste of Division A competition.
“Overall, I was very happy with the way the season went,” Rivenburg said. “We had a lot of kids continue to drop time throughout the summer. We went 3-2 in a very good division and I thought we had a good showing at divisionals and then again at All-Stars. Clayton tripled there, so it’s probably fair
to say he’s no longer a budding star but he is a star.”
Kings Landing finished 2-3 in dual meets and then placed fourth at the Division B champs and longtime coach Kandia Spain could not have been more pleased with those results. Alexia Zaidi won both the 11-12 girls 50 breast (35.18) and 50 back (30.84) and was second in the 100 IM (1:06.05) at All-Stars, while Aspen Gallaudet won the 9-10 girls 25 breast (19.12) at All-Stars and was sixth in the 25 fly and fifth in the 50 free. Sarah Cole, a rising senior at Huntingtown High School, will be back for two more summers in the 15-18 girls bracket, but three others, Zach Spain, Isaiah Johnson and John Bubser aged out.
“We finished right in the middle of the pack, which is what I expected,” Spain said. “We won’t move up and we won’t move down. We get to stay in Division B for another year at least. We had a lot of kids continue to take best times at the end of the summer. We only lose three kids so we should be pretty strong again next summer. But it will be interesting to see how well some the kids do when they move up an age division next season.”
Westlake went 0-5 in Division D action then finished sixth in the Divisional meet, but Waves of Westlake swimmers Emily Decker, a rising senior at Westlake High School, Kerrigan McMillen, a rising junior at North Point and Daniel Madigan, a rising seventh grader, all performed well through the summer and into the postseason meets.
Indian Head went 2-3 in the Division E meets, but then finished third in the Divisional champs as Brett Culhane, Shaun Butler, RG Bolton and Bryan Mentzer formed a solid 200 medley relay quartet that earned a berth at All-Stars. Bannister was 2-3 in Division F meets, ending the summer with consecutive victories and finished fourth at Divisionals thanks to Jonathan Parham, Michael Parham and several other youthful swimmers.
Hawthorne Country Club swimmer Conor Vienneau enjoyed a stellar season in the Division B meets against 15-18 boys competition and should be a factor for the Gators for three more summers in the tough Division A meets.
Smallwood Village Aquatic Club swimmer Clayton Jameson emerged as a star in the league by capturing three events at the Prince-Mont All-Star meet at West Arundel late last month.
Westlake swimmer Daniel Madigan enjoyed a solid summer for the Waves in Prince-Mont Division D action and should do well for the WOW squad over the next six seasons in the league.