Last Thursday, Oct. 20, the Rockford swim team honored 16 members of the senior class before the East Kentwood meet. This class has experienced some great moments over the past four years, including an OK Red championship, two top-10 state finishes and numerous individual accomplishments. This group of young women, one of the largest in Rockford history, has continued a tradition of high-quality swim teams at Rockford under the leadership of Coach Tom Parks.
Divers Macie DeGraaf, Katie DeHaan and Maggie Setterington along with swimmers Abby Finlayson, Emilie Hahne, Shelby Hodges, Maddie Levine, Morgan Longberg, Kara Loux, Amanda Mull, Alyssa Rollins, Rachael Romain, Alaina Smith, Sarah Smith, Renae Venman and Casey Wolfer have entrenched the Rockford program as one of the top swim programs in all of Michigan.
On this special night it was only fitting that they handled their business against East Kentwood with an easy victory, 199-105. Rockford started quickly and never looked back as they swept the 200-yard medley relay, taking the top three positions. They followed that up when Megan Schremp, Emily Smith and Adrianna Craft went first through third in the 200-yard freestyle in times of 2:03.67, 2:04.16 and 2:04.88 respectively.
Stephanie Mull grabbed second in the 200-yard individual medley in a time of 2:33.32, followed by Marie Siegel in third in 2:33.56, Hodges was fourth in 2:37.17, and Elliana Raymond was fifth in 2:40.76. In the 50-yard freestyle, Levine took first with a :25.92, Madison Trimble was third in :27.02, Morgan Koop was fourth in :27.22 and Kayla Brower was seventh in :30.77.
Rockford then swept diving with DeHaan, DeGraaf, Setterington and Sarah McCabe taking first through fourth places.
The second half of the meet saw Rockford take four of the top five spots in the 100-yard butterfly with Erin Hudson in first (1:05.44), Trimble second (1:05.58), Delayni Kornak-Kotarba third (1:06.31), and Mull fifth (1:15.45).
Rockford continued its dominance when Kennedy Cutler, S. Smith, Hahne and Morgan Longberg went first through fourth in the 100-yard freestyle. In the 500-yard freestyle, Kayla Kidder was first (5:36.96), Dakota Noble was second (5:48.57), Venman was third (5:49.35), and Raymond was fifth in (6:18.29).
In the 200-yard freestyle relay, Rockford took the top two places and they followed that up by placing first through third in the 100-yard backstroke when Kara Vandawater took first (1:01.79), Kornak-Kotarba was second (1:05.98), Rachel Fredricks was third (1:06.16) and Kelsey Lipe placed seventh (1:10.60).
The victory was nice, but the night belonged to the seniors. As these 16 young women move on to whatever life holds for them in the future, they will always remember the past four glorious years of being a part of the Rockford Rams swim team and all the pain, laughs and thrills they have experienced together.