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By Bob Orwis

Even though the opponent wasn’t as originally scheduled and it wasn’t a conference meet against a conference foe, North Allegheny got the 2020-2021 swimming and diving season underway in impressive fashion, wining all the events tonight against Seneca Valley.

North Catholic was scheduled to be the opening night opponent for the Tigers but when the Trojans backed out, NA put in a call to their friendly foes at Seneca Valley and the two squared off in a non-section meet, with a chance for all the athletes to get scores and times under their belt before the mandatory COVID shutdown. On a night designed for all the competitors to have fun, North Allegheny dominated the Raiders, winning both the girls and boys dive meet and taking the girls swim meet 119-67 and the boys meet by a score of 116-70.

The girls diving competition finished the way the 2020 WPIAL Championships did at NA, with Christina Shi, Zoe Ky, and Maya Ennis in the top three spots. Shi, who won the gold medal last year as a freshman, posted a score of 303.35 to take first place. That score set a new school and pool record for six dives at North Allegheny. Ky, who took bronze in the championships, finished second with a score of 265.40. Yale-bound senior Ennis, who was the silver medalist, finished in third place with a score of 262.05. On the boy’s side of the boards, Will Schenk, who won bronze at the WPIAL Championships, won with a score of 241.25. Lucas Rodgers placed second for NA at 200.85.

The girls hit the pool next for 11 races and the night stayed great for the black and gold. The 200-yard medley relay team of Molly Smyers, Natalie Sens, Ella Ogden and Quinn Frost posted a time of (1:46:42) to win the first event. Lexi Sundgren won the 200-yard freestyle (1:52:96) and Smyers followed her with a win in the 200-yard individual medley. It wasn’t until the 6th race until Seneca Valley registered a win when Akron recruit Kendall Craig won the 100-yard butterfly. Frost posted a win in the 50-yard freestyle, with Ogden taking the 100-yard butterfly. Haley Miller (100-yard freestyle), Smyers – Sundgren – Miller – Frost (200-Yard free relay) and Smyers – Mikayla TieppoKara MihmGreta Mott (400-yard free relay) also posted wins for the 12-time defending WPIAL champions.

The night stayed smooth for the 3-time defending boys WPIAL champion Tigers, with North Allegheny securing victories in 8 of the 11 races. William Gao, Jacob McCarren, Tim Compton, and Matt Turzai posted a time of 1:35:95 to win the 200-yard medley relay. After Seneca Valley won the 200-yard freestyle and the 200-yard individual medley, the Tigers would win 7 of the last 8 races. Turzai (22:40) won the 50-yard freestyle, Compton (52:01) finished first in the 100-yard butterfly and won the 500-yard freestyle with a time of (4:47:20). Ben GavranTyler TieppoZach Jubeck and Turzai won the 200-yard free relay, with Marko Kosanovich taking first in the 100-yard backstroke. Jacob McCarran won the 100-yard breaststroke and the team of Gao, Compton, Gavran and Jubeck finished out the night by winning the 400-yard free relay with a time of (3:21:31.)

Congratulations to Christina Shi and senior Tim Compton for being chosen as the Wright Automotive Players of the Meet. With a record setting 6-dive score, Shi started where she left off last season. Compton, who finished 5th in the WPIAL in the 500-yard free last year, picked up individual wins in the 100-yard fly, the 500-yard free and was part of two relay winning teams in the 200-yard medley and the 400-yard free.

The Tigers next two meets are cancelled and the next scheduled event for NA is on January 14th when they visit Hampton. Stayed tuned the to the North Allegheny Tigers Athletic website for any schedule changes as they occur.