Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader
MANVEL, Texas —
The final regular contest of the swim season put local swimmers against some strong competition just in time for district.
Swimmers from Vidor High School and LC-M High School traveled to Manvel High School this past Saturday to compete in the Alvin ISD Classic, which also just happened to be the largest field of competitors either swim team has seen all year as approximately 40 teams from the region participated.
Carly Bessire of Vidor placed 13th out of 48 swimmers in the girls 200 yard freestyle with her best time of the year 2:20.73, while, in the boys race, teammate Jaymes Withrow finished 43rd in 3:35.72.
The girls 50 yard freestyle featured the largest competitive field of the day with 145 girls. LC-M’s Savannah Shepherd finished 47th in 29.95 seconds, while Vidor’s Cullen Wilgers placed 112th in 35.55 seconds. In the boys race, Vidor’s Damian Mann had his best time of the season by finishing 38th in 26.52 seconds, while Hunter Heidleberg of the Pirates placed 83rd in 29.43 seconds, a season best for the freshman.
Hannah Odom used a time of 1:11.68 to claim 14th place in the girls 100 yard butterfly for the Lady Pirates, while teammate Hunter Heidleberg finished 30th in the boys race with a time of 1:09.08.
Odom had a short breather before literally jumping right back into the pool as she placed 12th in the girls 100 yard freestyle in 1:01.37, while, her teammate, Shae Phillips finished 81st with a season best time of 1:33.96, an improvement of nearly four seconds. Vidor’s Damien Kirkland finished 38th in the boys race with a time of 1:00.00, and teammate Lucas Wolfe placed 55th in 1:03.85, a season best time. Peter Thorne of Vidor placed 85th with a time of 1:19.77, a season best time and improvement of nearly 10 seconds.
In the girls 500 yard freestyle, Gabriella Duke used a season best time of 8:04.88 to place 28th for the Lady Pirates. In the boys race, Damian Mann improved his season best time by more than 15 seconds as he finished 12th with a time of 6:05.01. Other Vidor swimmers in the boys 500 included Eddie Dyees, who placed 22nd in 6:35.12; Hunter Porter placed 32nd in 9:10.07; and James Withrow finished 33rd in 10:17.86.
Vidor’s Carly Bessire placed 13th in the girls 100 yard backstroke in 1:12.89, while Savannah Shepherd of LC-M finished 34th in 1:20.00, a season best time. Cullen Wilgers of Vidor finished in 56th place, while Shae Phillips improved her time by more than seven seconds for a 60th place finish in 1:47.97.
In the girls 100 yard breaststroke, Gabriella Duke of Vidor used a time of 1:54.00 to place 54th, while teammate Eddie Dyess finished 33rd in the boys bracket in 1:21.16 and fellow teammate Peter Thorne had a season best time of 1:52.67, an improvement of 13.36 seconds, to place 55th.
The Lady Pirates relay team of Bessire, Phillips, Odom and Wilgers placed 34th in the girls 200 yard medley relay with a time of 2:39.95.
In the boys 200 yard medley relay, the Pirates utilized two teams. The team of Kirkland, Mann, Wolfe and Heidleberg placed 23rd in 2:03.78, while the relay team of Thorne, Dyess, Porter and Withrow finished 37th in 3:05.59.
In the boys 200 yard freestyle relay, Mann, Wolfe, Dyess and Kirkland paced the Pirates to an 18th place finish in 1:47.83.
The Vidor and LC-M swim teams will compete in the district swim meet on Thursday, Jan. 31, at Beaumont ISD Natatorium on the grounds of the Carroll A. Thomas Educational Support Center in Beaumont. The Lady Pirates look to defend the girls team swim title, while the Pirates hope to capitalize on its recent moment and claim their first outright district swim team championship.