Three area swim teams will be taking to the pool looking to improve on their successes from a year ago.
The Fonda-Johnstown team finished 3-3 on the regular season and took home a fourth-place finish at the Section II championships.
Fonda-Johnstown’s Erica Askew competes in the breaststroke against Gloversville-Mayfield at Gloversville Middle School on Oct. 6, 2011.
The Leader-Herald/Bill Trojan
"We look forward to another successful season," Fonda-Johnstown coach Julianna Popp said. "We will be looking to our veteran team members to lead us to another high placement at sectionals."
Fonda-Johnstown's top returning veteran also is its most successful athlete from last year. Meghan Bartlett won the Section II diving championship in 2011 and finished 15th at the New York State championship meet. She will be a senior in 2012.
"We want to see Meghan repeat as Section II diving champion for our division, as well as return to the state championships," Popp said.
Erica Askew also is looking to continue success she enjoyed last year. Askew finished second in Section II Division II in the 100-yard breaststroke, three seconds behind Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake senior Lauren Rabideu, who has since graduated.
As the top returning finisher in the event from last year in Fonda-Johnstown's division, Popp has high expectations for Askew, now a junior.
"We would also like to see Erica Askew win sectionals in the 100-yard breaststroke event, as she was runner-up last year," Popp said.
Gloversville-Mayfield Sea Dragons coach Mike Harrington described his team as "leaner, stronger and tighter," as their main loss was Liz Hogan, who swam the 50-yard freestyle last year. Everyone else is back.
"Every one of these ladies were major point scorers in the lanes for us least year, as well as sectional qualifiers," Harrington said. "Overall, we are looking to build on what we started last year."
Mary-Kate Poulin won the sectional championship last year in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 1:02.17.
As a team, the Sea Dragons posted a 4-5 record in the Foothills Council for a third-place finish. They finished fifth at the sectional championship meet.
"We had a very young team last year and they now understand what varsity swimming requires and they are meeting the demands," Harrington said.
The Sea Dragons' diving program has received a bit of a facelift with the addition of first year diving coach Kevin Stuttle, the 3-meter diving record holder at the State University of New York at Cortland. Gloversville-Mayfield has three new divers, one of whom has been diving at the modified level for two years. The other two are first-year divers.
"Despite their newness on the board on the board, they are quick studies and the progress that we are seeing on the board is very comforting," Harrington said.
The Amsterdam Sea Rams will be under the direction of first-year coach Nancy Spagnola, who was an assistant to previous coach Marisha Pawlik. The Sea Rams were 11th at the Section II championships last year.
They return most of their team from last year and add a newcomer in junior Alyssa Bruno.