Exhaustion hampers Dogie swimmers

Sonja Karp

Sonja Karp

NLJ Sports Reporter


The Lady Dogie swim team had their first overnight competitions this week, and the two experiences were about as polar opposite as it gets. 

On Thursday, the squad traveled to Buffalo for a whirlwind of a dual, and then crossed the mountain for the Worland Invitational featuring nine teams. Adding to the challenge of the weekend was the fact that the ladies were two swimmers down due to Becca Henkle and Kassidee Jeppesen being sidelined with illness.

“In Buffalo, it was a really fast meet, and missing both Becca and Kassidee combined to make the experience a little overwhelming,” head coach Doug Scribner began. “Adding to that, this was also the first time we’ve been in that kind of format, and we were also just really tired.”

The result of all of these factors was that the team did not see the kinds of improvements they had been making over the last few weeks.

In fact, where last week the squad improved in all but two events, this week they only improved in two.

“It was a tired weekend for the girls, and we just never really even got into the meet on Friday,” Scribner sighed. “We started and then we were done without ever really getting going. The girls were competitive, but they were continually having to chase themselves with quick turnarounds between events. That is difficult to do both mentally and physically.”

When the dual ended, Scribner advised his swimmers to shift their focus to the Worland Invitational the next day, and because everyone was tired the team retired to their hotel for a good night’s sleep in order to be ready for their next competition.

“It was a very different environment from one day to the next, because we went from only two teams to nine,” Scribner explained. “The girls were able to get into the meet a little bit better on Saturday, and their swims were better. They were racing and competing, but they were still a little tired.”

On Saturday, Hannah Gross punched her final ticket to the State Meet as she swam the breaststroke for the first time this season and qualified in 3A time.

Relays were going to be the focus this week. However, due to the absence of Henkle and Jeppesen, Scribner’s plan was foiled. As such, he reverted back to the practice of having swimmers compete in the event of their choice and one in which they wished to improve.

Despite having only seven members of the team vying for finishes, the ladies were able to get the better of Rawlins, a team of 13, at the invitational. 

The Lady Dogies go to Douglas for their invitational this Saturday, and Scribner expects to have his squad back to full capacity. Traditionally, Douglas has been a tired week where it’s difficult to get the girls focused. It’s an early morning leave time on Saturday morning and to compound that, it is Homecoming. 

“Typically we swim pretty well in Worland, so I’m not sure what to expect this weekend. All I know is that we will get in the water and swimming will take place,” Scribner laughed. “It was Douglas where the idea of letting the girls swim an IM in the 400 Free relay came from because I had a couple of girls who were just struggling to get into the meet. I dangled that carrot in front of them to get them to compete hard in their events leading up to it and that gave them something to look forward to, so I may have to do that again this week.”


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