Rams swim/dive team opens season with first conference win

Kellen Martella swims the freestyle in the 400 free relay.

The Rockford men’s swim and dive team came away victories from Jenison’s home pool on Thursday, Jan. 5, when they defeated the Wildcats 185-124, in their first OK Red match-up of the season. Despite some fast swims by the Jenison squad, the combination of the depth and the speed of the Rams proved that they will be a tough contender in the conference this year.

The Rockford boys swam to a first-place finish in every event but two, and displayed great depth by placing three Rockford swimmers in the top four spots of every individual event.

Craig Wasberg dives off the block at the start of the 200 free.

Rockford’s Trenton Babcock and Craig Wasberg picked up two more individual state cuts at the meet, making it seven for the Rams so far this season. Babcock claimed his first state cut of the year with his first-place finish in the 200-yard individual medley (2:01.18). Wasberg earned his second state-qualifying time with his win in the 200-yard free (1:47.74).

Other individual first-place finishes for the Rams included Eric Chisholm in the 50-yard and 100-yard free (21.49, 48.63), and Bryan Wasberg in the 100-yard breast (1:04.13). Senior Josh Travis also touched the wall in first in the 100-yard fly (55.42 seconds), barely missing the state cut.

Rockford sophomore diver Shane Phillips flies high off the board.

The score couldn’t have been any closer on the diving board at the Jenison pool when Rockford’s Devin Rittenhouse seized first place with 179.95 points, closely followed by teammate Shane Phillips, who grabbed second place with 179.75 points. Sophomore Mitch Rodema of Rockford took fifth place with 145.30 points.

The Rams’ next OK Red contest will occur at Rockford’s home pool on Thursday, Jan. 12, against Grand Haven.

Mitch Rodema dives to fifth place at Jenison.


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