When the 2010 Sequim Wolves' girls swim team takes to the lanes this fall, it'll be without coach Linda Moats for the first time in program history.
Longtime diving coach Susan Craig takes over a team that struggled with roster numbers in 2009 but sees an influx of new talent and several key returnees in the pool in 2010.
Seniors Rachel Hardy, Rachel Hughes, Gianna Vennetti and junior Autumn Kessinger return to lead a team that swam to a fifth-place finish at districts.
That's good for Craig, who admittedly has no experience coaching swimmers.
Hardy looks to return to state after qualifying for both the 50 and 100 free in 2009.
Hughes was solid in her junior season, posting three individual district-qualifying swims in 2009 (200 medley, 100 back, 100 fly).
After a year away from the squad, Vennetti returns to try to get back to top form that saw her qualify for the state meet in 2007 and 2008. She swam in the 200 free relay in 2007 and again in 2008 and placed eighth in the 100 butterfly in 2008.
Kessinger helped the Wolves qualify three relays to districts.
Craig has a pair of athletes who are predominantly swimmers but want to try diving as well - Vennetti and sophomore Amariah Clift.
"The girls are excited and willing to work," Craig says.
Top teams in the league figure to be Port Angeles, Olympic and North Kitsap.
With the big shake-up
in classifications following the 2009-2010 season, Sequim found itself in the massive West Central District 2A group, a total of 21 teams - largest in the state by far.
Although the state-qualifying time should be quicker, league swimming teams likely will get more individual, non-automatic state berths from top finishes at districts and wild cards.
Sequim High Wolves girls swimming
2009 record: 0-4 in Olympic League, 0-10 overall; team finished fifth at districts; one individual (Rachel Hardy) to state
Head coach: Susan Craig (first year as head coach, 13th year overall)
Outlook: The Wolves' returnees should have a good shot at finishing well at districts and possibly at state, but Sequim may struggle in the win-loss column. A large freshman class is encouraging for the future.
Key dates: Sept. 16 at Klahowya, Sept. 23 vs. Kingston, Oct. 7 vs. Port Angeles, Oct. 26 at Olympic League meet
Date Opponent Time
Sept. 16 at Klahowya 3:30 p.m.
Sept. 21 at Bremerton 3 p.m.
Sept. 23 Kingston 3:30 p.m.
Sept. 25 Lindberg 10:30 a.m.
Sept. 30 at Port Townsend 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 7 Port Angeles 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 12 Bainbridge 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 14 North Kitsap 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 21 at Olympic 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 26 Olympic league meet TBA
Reach Michael Dashiell at email@example.com.