Head Coach Mike Cutler and his assistant coaches headed into the championship meets with enthusiasm and optimism for some fast swims and personal bests from his kids. The Rockford Riptide team responded with just that, and turned out one of the best seasons the club has ever seen. The first stop for Coach Cutler and his team was East Lansing for the Junior Olympic meet. This meet is the last opportunity to qualify for the state meet. Every swimmer dropped time in at least one event or more. Rachel Gamm placed first in the 100 IM and Alyssa Kinstle took second in the 100 breaststroke, both adding state-qualifying times. For the 12 & Under, Hunter Ignasiak took first in the 100 IM, adding more state times under her belt, as did Christina Hansen (100 backstroke) and Chloe Nelson (50 fly and 50 back). In the 13 & Over group, Ethan Babcock took third place in both the 200 IM and 100 fly, sending him to the state meet for those events. Erin Hudson aged up in between Junior Olympic and state, but still earned qualifying times for the 15 & Over group in the 100 back and 100 free. Delayni Kornak-Kotarba took seventh place in the 100 fly. Morgan Lipe finished fourth in the 200 breast, and Dakota Noble swam the longest distance, the mile, with a time of 19:17.48, earning her a spot in that event at state. Hannah Raymond took sixth in two events, the 200 free and 100 free, also heading to state with those times. Also representing Riptide were Yousef Bennet, Josh Corder, Alec Cutler, Olivia Foster, Marissa Marion, Leslie Schuchardt, Lilly Setterington, Cory Stage, and Kara Vandawater. In the state meets, 29 kids represented Riptide. Lake Orion, Mich. hosted the 12 & Under group and Zeeland the 13 & Over kids. This is one of the largest groups ever to go and represent the club. Riptide’s youngest swimmers, Masy Folcik and Kinstle, both placed in the top 16 in one event or more, which is impressive since they are only nine years old. Gamm, also nine, took sixth place in the 500 free and eighth in the 200 free. Foster led off the medley relay with improvement in her time […]
by LINDSAY PATTON-CARSON Rockford Riptide celebrated the end of its summer session with a successful trip to the state meet, held at Eastern Michigan University (EMU) in Ypsilanti, Mich. The USA swim team sent 17 of its members to the meet, a result of hard work paid off during the summer. The swimmers include Jacob Fase, 13, Sara Fredricks, 12, Rachel Gamm, 8, Andrew Haid, 12, Daniel Haid, 14, Christina Hanssen, 12, Kennzie Hartmann, 11, Benjamin Hoffmeister, 14, Timmer Hoffmeister, 14, Delayni Kornak-Kotarba, 14, Marissa Marion, 14, Sydney McDowell, 12, Dakota Noble, 14, Peyton Rayburn, 11, Hannah Raymond, 13, Megan Schremp, 14 and Meegan Snyman, 11. Four Riptide swimmers also represented the club at the 15-and-over state meet held at Jenison High School. Kennedy Cutler, Hannah Loesch, Derek Mead and Sam Tinsley have provided leadership in practices and at meets, and have inspired the younger swimmers to excel as well. At EMU, Riptide boasted Gamm, the youngest swimmer at the state meet this year at eight years old. She competed in the 10-and-under 50 freestyle race, and the 10-and-under 100 freestyle race, where she dropped .65 seconds. “Watching eight-year-old Rachel Gamm in her first state championship meet was a lot of fun,” said Head Coach Michael Cutler. “Not many eight-year-olds make it to that meet and have to compete in the 10-and-under age group.” Riptide had a first-place swimming in McDowell, who won top honors in the female 11-12 100 breaststroke. She also placed third in the female 11-12 50 breaststroke. Fredricks competed in nine events, where she shaved off time in every race, including 2.86 seconds in the female 11-12 100 freestyle, placing third, and 6.19 seconds in the female 11-12 200 freestyle, placing fourth. Fourteen-year-old Daniel Haid competed in eight events, as did 14-year-old Timmer Hoffmeister. Haid placed ninth and cut 5.33 seconds off in the 13-14 male 200 backstroke, while Hoffmeister placed 10th and took 3.38 seconds off his time in the male 13-14 100 butterfly. Hartmannn also swam strong, competing in 10 events and dropping time in all but two. She cracked the top 10 in two events, with her highest placement being sixth in the female 11-12 100 freestyle. The team is currently on its August break as swimmers get […]
by LINDSAY PATTON-CARSON For Rockford Riptide, this winter session has been a long one. Multiple snow days interrupted the winter session, but the swimmers have not let it affect their performances. Every swimmer showed an ability to adapt quickly to schedule changes, and as a result, 27 swimmers have qualified in 120 events at the Junior Olympics, which was to be held in Battle Creek March 4-6. “We are very proud of all our swimmers and the effort they put into the long winter season, and excited to see what they accomplish at our championship meets,” said Michael Cutler, head coach for Rockford Riptide. The Junior Olympics meet is significant for the Riptide swimmers in that it gives them one last opportunity to qualify for the state meet, which will start March 11-13 in Zeeland for the 12-and-under age group, and end March 18-20 at Eastern Michigan University with the 13-and-over age group. Currently, Riptide has 24 swimmers that have qualified for the state meet in more than 90 events. “Riptide is pleased to be a part of such a strong aquatics program in this community with swimming, water polo, school teams, Community Ed, age group and elite groups,” Cutler said. Rockford Riptide swim team is a USA Swimming competitive swim program designed for swimmers ages 5 to 18. Competitive swimming experience is not needed prior to joining. “I’m proud of the level of dedication the group has shown, and I’m excited to see how that will pay off in the next couple of weeks,” said David Carson, assistant coach for Rockford Riptide. The spring session runs from April 11 to May 26 and focuses on technique and stroke development. New swimmer evaluations and registration will be on Tuesday, March 15 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Rockford High School pool. See www.riptide.org, or e-mail Suelyn Ritsema at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Riptide Coach Mike Cutler said there were a number of strong swims at both meets, but the overall effort of the team is what mattered most. “We had a number of great swims and personal best swims, but the team spirit is what sets this year’s Riptide team apart,” Cutler said. “Even tough swims are good learning experiences, and our swimmers cheer each other on and support each other. I’m very proud of every one of them.” Swimmers who placed first through third in individual events at the Winter Washout and Zeeland events are Grace Badovinac, Grace Bargwell, Yousef Bennett, Alexa Caster, Stephan Cress, Kennedy Cutler, Macy Folcik, Rachel Fredricks, Sara Fredricks, Andrew Haid, Daniel Haid, Christina Hanssen, Kennzie Hartmann, Benjamin Hoffmeister, Timmer Hoffmeister, Erin Hudson, Hunter Ignasiak, Nathan Isley, Julian Kipke, Delayni Kornak-Kotarba, Sydney McDowell, David Newberger, Jacob Newberger, Peyton Rayburn, Megan Schremp, Abigail Setterington, Meegan Snyman, Courtney Uselton, Karrington VanderMolen, Kara Vandawater, and Madelyn White. J. Newberger placed first in every event in which he competed at Winter Washout, and D. Haid, Hartmann, and D. Newberger swept their events at the Zeeland meet. Riptide’s purpose is to introduce children to the benefits of competitive swimming and encourage swimmers to reach their highest level of potential in and out of the water while demonstrating leadership and sportsmanship skills. For more information on Riptide, visit www.riptide.org.
The Rockford Riptide competitive swim team will host its sixth annual Fall Fiesta Meet on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 14-15, at Rockford High School’s pool. The Fall Fiesta meet is a USA Swimming sanctioned event. More than 400 West Michigan swimmers from Riptide and other USA Swimming teams and clubs will compete in the event. Spectators are welcome to watch the competition from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. “Our Fall Fiesta event is a great opportunity to see Riptide in action,” said Riptide Coach Mike Cutler. “Our team is off to a strong start for the season and we’re proud of our swimmers’ performance at the Holland ‘Boo Bash’ event last month.” Riptide’s purpose is to introduce children to the benefits of competitive swimming and encourage swimmers to reach their highest level of potential in and out of the water while demonstrating leadership and sportsmanship skills. For more information on Riptide, visit www.riptide.org.