Swimmers and Divers Ready for WPIALs!
The USC Swimming and Diving Teams have just completed a very successful dual meet season with both teams finishing with a won-loss record of 7-3. Next up is the WPIAL Championship competitions, starting with our divers who will compete this Saturday, February 25th at North Allegheny High School.
The WPIAL diving competition will start with the boys at 9:30 a.m. The Panthers will be represented by Sophomore Kobe Yuyi, who finished the season ranked 16th in the WPIAL in his first year competing for USC.
The boys competition will be followed by the girls, with the competition starting at 1:15 p.m., also at North Allegheny. Senior Addison Burnette (currently ranked #10 in the WPIAL) will be joined by her sister, Freshman Delaney Burnette (ranked #24), as they seek to score points for the Panthers and punch their ticket to the PIAA Championships at Bucknell, March 17-18. Last year Addison qualified for the state meet, where she finished in 13th place overall in the state.
Best of luck to our 3 Panthers divers as they compete in the WPIAL Championships this weekend!
Once the WPIAL diving competition is done, our attention turns to the swimming championships, which will be held at Trees Hall on the Campus of the University of Pittsburgh March 2-3. The competition starts at 9:45 a.m. both days.
This year the Panthers had 20 swimmers qualify for WPIALs, including 9 girls and 11 boys. The top returning point scorers for USC are Juniors Kaitlyn Connors and Amanda Aidar. Kaitlyn will be looking to repeat as champion in the 100 freestyle and she will also be competing in the 50 freestyle, an event she won as a Freshman in 2021. Amanda qualified for states in both the 200 IM and 100 butterfly last year and she is looking to finish in the top 3 of both those events again this year. They are joined by Kendell Drew, another PIAA qualifier from 2022 who is looking to improve upon her 7th place WPIAL finish from last year. In addition to our 3 states qualifiers from last year, the USC girls will be represented by Senior Blaire Gillespie (100 fly, 100 breast), Juniors Freja Kile (200 free, 500 free), Clara Senchyshak (200 free) and Evie Sullivan (100 breast), Sophomore Maren Davis (200 IM) and Freshman Lauren Mittleider (200 free, 500 free).
On the boys side, the Panthers are coming off a season where they were WPIAL runners-up (to eventual state champion Seneca Valley) in the team scoring. That team featured 6 senior swimmers who qualified for the state meet. This year’s team has rebounded impressively, qualifying 11 boys for the WPIAL Championships, led by Freshman Nazar Zoukovski, who is currently ranked #3 in the WPIAL in the 200 IM and #2 in the 100 freestyle, the events in which he will compete next week. Nazar will be joined by his brother, Matvey (100 freestyle), who is a Senior co-captain of the team. Additional qualifiers looking to score points for the team include Senior co-captains Colby Bernard (100 fly, 100 back) and Alex Petkov (200 IM, 100 breast). They are joined by Juniors Whit Burns (50 free, 100 breast), Matthew Fibbi (200 free, 500 free), Pavel Schabanow (200 IM, 100 back) and Max Shipley (200 free, 100 free). The Sophomore class is represented by Liam Tomb (100 fly, 100 breast) and Griffin Tomsheck (200 IM, 100 breast). Rounding out our competitors in the boys meet is Freshman Ben Whiteford, who will compete in the 100 fly and 100 back.
The season will conclude with the PIAA Championships at Bucknell University on March 17-18. The final qualifiers for the state meet will be released on Sunday, March 5. Best of luck to all of our USC swimmers and divers at the upcoming WPIAL Championships!