Most Columbus East-Columbus North battles are intense, knock-down, drag-out affairs.
Swimming isn’t one of them.
When the Olympians and Bull Frogs get together in the pool, it’s a low-key atmosphere. Such was the case Tuesday night when North’s fifth-ranked boys and eighth-ranked girls cruised to 127-59 and 135-51 victories.
“It’s a fun meet, inner-city rivalry,” said North coach Jim Sheridan, who coaches kids from both schools in the Donner Swim Club.
“It’s an opportunity for my program to switch it around, and I know (East girls) coach (Jill) Arnholt and (boys) coach (Dave) Fribley did the same. We don’t look at this meet as a win or a loss type of meet. We look at it as good city competition where these kids get to know each other and make a lot of friends.”
The Bull Frog boys and girls won every event and combined for 38 lifetime-best swims.
Marah Bieger won the 200-yard freestyle (1 minute, 58.67 seconds) and the 100 backstroke (1:04.46), Maddie Wyke took the 200 individual medley (2:15.84) and 100 freestyle (56.28) and Emma Wyke captured the 50 freestyle (26.42) and 500 freestyle (5:19.75) to lead the North girls. Erin Jones won the diving competition (186.70), Mackenzie Fry took the 100 butterfly (1:02.26), Rachael Sollman captured the 100 breaststroke (1:14.25), and the Bull Frogs swept the 200 medley (2:00.85), 200 freestyle (1:52.94) and 400 freestyle (3:51.92) relays.
For the North boys, Cody Taylor won the 200 freestyle (1:47.00) and 100 butterfly (53.50), and Sam Loescher took the 200 IM (2:02.26) and 500 freestyle (4:57.78). Other winners were Matthew Freudenthaler in the 50 freestyle (22.96), Sam Larson in diving (170.95), Zach Ziegler in the 100 freestyle (51.79), John Rupp in the 100 backstroke (59.40), Sam Parker in the 100 breaststroke (1:08.64) and the 200 medley (1:47.10), 200 freestyle (1:31.96) and 400 freestyle (3:25.70) relays.
Isaac Walling led the East boys with second-place finishes in the 200 IM (2:07.25). Noah Clack took second in the 200 freestyle (2:07.12), and Michael Hannasch was second in the 100 backstroke (1:07.25).
“We have three meets this week, and I think we got done what we wanted to get done, which is to come in and have some good swims,” Fribley said. “We’re swimming against North, which is really, really good, but we have to turn around and swim against them in the sectional, so our approach was, ‘We need to go after this meet and take the challenge.’”
The Olympian girls were led by third-place finishes from Lauren Wirth in the 200 IM (2:39.19), Maggie Frazier in the 50 freestyle (29.05), Lauren Brunn in diving (158.35), Carley Fox in the 100 butterfly (1:18.60), Mariann Fant in the 100 freestyle (1:08.07) and Gayatri Mazganokar in the 100 breaststroke (1:26.53).
“We had a lot of personal bests, and we keep improving with each meet,” Arnholt said. “That’s kind of our goal as a team — for them to get better and better as we go. It’s a really hard time for us, and we’re swimming a lot of yards right now, so they’re tired, but they need to learn to swim fast tired.”