With more numbers, comes more depth. With more depth, comes more points. With more points, comes more wins.
That’s the gameplan for Oshkosh North/Lourdes swimming and diving coach Heidi Wara.
With 26 girls on the roster to start the season, many of whom are back from last season, Wara enters the 2013 campaign with high hopes for her squad.
“We have some great returning swimmers and a lot of new freshmen. I’m excited to see what this team can do,” Wara said. “Our numbers are up from last year, which is good. We’re right around where we want to be.”
One of the swimmers Wara will be counting on this season is junior Katharine Tippins, who has swam at the state meet in each of her first two seasons.
Last year, she placed 14th in both the 200-yard freestyle and 500-yard freestyle races at state and appears primed for another big season.
“She swam a lot in the offseason, so she’s already ready to go — already focused right away,” Wara said. “We’re not only looking for her to perform great in the pool, but she’s also a great leader for our team out of the pool.”
Sophomore Ashley Wilson narrowly missed qualifying for state a year ago and also will be one of the leaders for North/Lourdes.
In addition, Madison Levesque — the team’s lone senior — and junior Arielle Eiler — who participated on North/Lourdes’ state relay teams as a freshman — are also returning.
Leading a large crop of newcomers will be Lindsey Tippins, the younger sister of Katharine, and Morgan Hammen.
“Lindsey is a real hard worker so we will see what she can put together this year,” Wara said. “I think Morgan has a lot to learn right now but she also has some great potential.”
The Fox Valley Association again looks to have some strong teams, led by the likes of Appleton North, Neenah and Oshkosh West.
But Wara, whose team finished fifth at the FVA meet last season, believes her team is going to be a step up from a year ago.
“I think this year we will definitely be more competitive. Just by the fact that we have a little bit bigger team than last year,” Wara said. “I’m looking forward to what we are able to put together.”
Head coach Carrie Bores enters her 32nd season at Oshkosh West and will take a roster of 52 into the 2013 season.
The Wildcats will have 12 returning letterwinners among its ranks, including state-qualifying diver Becky Prochnow and state-qualifying swimmers in juniors Taylor Ferrere and Alyssa Haertl.
Bores said in an email that the Wildcats will be in a rebuilding season.
“We have a very young team experience wise,” commented Bores. “Many opportunities await (the swimmers) to see who will fill the vacant roles. … I look forward to see what these girls can put together.”
A talented class of freshmen from last year return to lead Berlin/Green Lake’s hopes in the 2013 campaign.
Payton Parman highlights the group after qualifying for the state meet in both the 200-yard individual medley and 100-yard butterfly last season.
Rylie Parman, Emily Vlachina and Mattea Arndt — who was less than a second away from qualifying for state in the 100-yard freestyle a year ago — also will be key sophomores for the squad this season.
Celia Mueller was a junior last year that swam on Berlin/Green Lake’s 400-yard freestyle relay team that narrowly missed a state berth.