West Laurel swimming kicks off season with triumph

The opening of the 2013 Prince Mont-Swim League on June 15 offered an early chance for two local teams to square off at West Laurel.

The host Wahoos prevailed, 299-271, over West Arundel in a meet featuring teams who have returned to the Division C level this season.

"We had swimmers age up this year in the right spots and the kids just stepped up," said DeMatha grad Dave Floyd, a West Laurel co-coach with Matt Harris. "They did what they needed to do. They had a goal in mind when they went to swim."

Last year, West Arundel was 3-1 in dual meets while West Laurel was 2-2, but the Wahoos had the upper hand June 15, despite triple wins from four West Arundel swimmers: Michael Venit (U-8 boys) in the freestyle, breaststroke and backstroke; Colette Pierce (13-14 girls) in the free, breast and individual medley; Jay Venit (13-14 boys) in the butterfly, breast and IM; and James Oslund (15-18 boys) in the fly, breast and IM.

"They just swam better than us," said long-time West Arundel head coach John Venit, also the head coach at Laurel High and the president of the Prince-Mont Swim League. "They have a good team. It was a good, competitive meet. We were down three after the butterfly, but no excuses."

West Laurel was aided by Erin Kane (15-18 girls), a triple winner in the butterfly, breast and IM.

Another triple winner for West Laurel was Henry Buda (11-12 boys), who won the backstroke, 100 IM and butterfly.

Max Bagileo (9-10 boys) was also a triple winner for West Laurel as he was first in the breast, back and fly.

Double winners for West Arundel were Olivia Clark (9-10 girls) in the butterfly and free and Cecilia Ramirez (11-12 girls), with victories in the butterfly and 100 IM.

The other local winner was Laurel City, which beat Prince George's Council, 266-219, in Division F as Eanna Heir-Keys (13-14 girls) was a triple winner in the butterfly, breast and 100 IM.

It was the first win for new head coach Susie Keys, the mother of Eanna Heir-Keys and Ava Heir-Keys (9-10 girls).

"It is exciting. Every year you have weakness in some age group. We do have a lot of 9-10 girls who are pretty strong," said Keys, a long-time Laurel resident who was born in Ireland. "We have a lot of other kids that contributed with single wins. It definitely takes a team effort."

Ivan Zapata (11-12 boys) was a triple winner in the butterfly, freestyle and 100 IM. Anthony Campos (9-10 boys) was a double winner for Laurel City in the breast and back. Ava Heir-Keys (9-10 girls) was a double winner in the butterfly and breast.

Laurel City was 2-2 in dual meets at Division G last summer.

"We moved up a division so the competition may be a little tougher," said Keys. "We are off to a good start."

The Russett Sharks, who were 3-1 in dual meets last year, began the season June 15 with a 314-256 loss to Adelphi in Division B.

Triple winners for Russett were Dominic Kazzi (U-10 boys) in the butterfly, freestyle and breast.

Kylie Ritter (U-8 girls) was also a triple winner in the freestyle, breaststroke and backstroke.

Double winners for Russett were Miles Scott (U-8 boys) in the freestyle and breaststroke, Lauren Ritter (13-14 girls) in the butterfly and IM and Megan Reyda (girls 15-18) in the butterfly and freestyle.

Montpelier began the season in Division D with a one-point loss to Cheverly, 285-284.

Suzannah Mills (13-14 girls) was a triple winner in the freestyle, back and 100 IM. Triple winners for the Montpelier boys were Thomas Brown de Colstoun (U-12) in the backstroke, butterfly and 100 IM and Dylan Buehler (15-18) in the butterfly, backstroke and 100 freestyle.

"It was real heartbreaking," said Brian Abdo, the Montpelier third-year coach. "I could not have asked for more from our swimmers. It was a great competition."

Double winners for Montpelier were Trey Beam (9-10 boys) in the free and back; Danielle Collman (girls 11-12) in the fly and 100 IM; Lucas Brown de Colstoun (boys 11-12) in the fly and IM; Frankie Spitza (boys 13-14) in the free and breast; and Nick Mills (boys 15-18) in the breast and IM.

The Silver Spring Swim Team, with meets that take place in Laurel, lost to Theresa Banks 342.5-205.5 in Division A. Silver Spring was 4-0 in dual meets in Division C last year.

Russett, Montpelier and Silver Spring all won divisional titles last year in the best summer for Laurel-area teams since at least 2008.

The six teams from Laurel were a combined 17-7 last year but are off to a 2-4 start this season.

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