Northside Women’s Swimming and Diving Splashes to Third at City
by Ethan Lim
Women’s Swimming and Diving City Championships took place on Sunday, November 5 2017, at the UIC Natatorium, teams from all across the city competing for both the JV and Varsity titles. Northside’s Women’s Swimming and Diving (NCPWSD) team aimed to dethrone the Lane Tech Indians -- the defending varsity champions. However, they had other tough opponents like the Jones College Prep/Payton Co-op team and the Whitney Young Dolphins to outscore in the process. Competition kicked off with the Women’s one meter diving finals where Taylor Watts, the Dolphin’s diver, took first place with a score of 359.75 points, while her teammate, Lindsay Sonnefeldt, placed third. Northside’s divers Reese Klemm, Adv. 907, and Liceth Sierra, Adv. 804, placed fourth and fifth respectively, Klemm scoring 249.20 and Sierra diving a 237.30. Lane’s Emma Calkins and Trinity Chen trailed the Mustangs; placing sixth and seventh. The swimming portion would be a much different story.
Following the diving, the first swimming event of the City Championships was the 200 yard Medley Relay. Whitney Young would again exhibit their depth and versatility by placing first with a time of 1:51.49. The Dolphins just barely out touched Northside’s own relay of Kaarina Sorensen-Jarrett, Adv. 909, Olivia Borawski, Adv. 903, Joanne Phan, Adv. 806, and Evy Schober Adv. 000, who finished with a 1:51.82. The Lane Tech Indians and Jones-Payton Eagles trailed both teams, placing third and fourth.
The competition shifted significantly once reaching the individual events. The Dolphin’s 1-2 finish in the 200 yard Freestyle was disrupted by Lane’s Natalia Sotelo. Sotelo beat out Whitney’s Annika Chrobak-Prince by less than a tenth of a second, taking away what would’ve been a dangerous point lead. Northside’s Emma Wall, Adv. 100, was able to finish 12th; with Edina Hadzic, Adv. 905, finishing 13th against a deep 200 yard Freestyle field. Olivia Borawski took the silver in the 200 yard Individual Medley, barely missing gold to Lane’s Taylor Holderfield.
The Indians and Dolphins began pulling away from the rest of the competition after the first break. Both teams started to trade first/second place finishes with each other. Lane would go on to win the 50, 100, and 500 yard Freestyle. However, Whitney took the 100 yard Butterfly with a 1-2 finish, coupled with Top-5 placings in the freestyle events that Lane won. Northside kept it close, placing in the Top 8 in all the events that Lane and Whitney had finished Top 3. The Mustangs even won the 200 yard Freestyle relay with a time of 1:42.07 when Olivia Borawski, Joanne Phan, Kimberly Acosta, Adv. 007, and Evy Schober out swam the Freestyle-commanding Indians and Dolphins. Borawski would also dominate the 100 yard Breaststroke with a 1:08.04, winning this event at City for her third year in a row.
Despite Northside’s valiant efforts, the conference title came down between Lane Tech and Whitney Young, with the winner of the 400 yard Freestyle relay taking home the plaque. In a stunning finish, the Lane Tech Indians finished first and defended their City title for a second year, making the second year in a row that Whitney Young has not won a swimming City Championship in neither their Men’s nor Women’s programs. The final scores: Lane Tech 382, Whitney Young 372, Northside 326, and Jones/Payton 298.
A strong third place at City shows that Northside still has dominance in the sport. When asking about the Mustang’s third place finish, Captain Joanne Phan said, “I’m so proud and honored to have been part of Northside’s swim team. I loved seeing my girls standing together on the sidelines cheering on their teammates, especially at the City Championship meet. Although we didn’t take home the title, I’m still extremely proud of all the ladies who swam their heart out.” Northside looks to be a strong Top 3 contender in Women’s Swimming and Diving in the next few years. Hopefully, the next generation of NCPWSD will be able to keep up the tradition.