The Fairyland Flash swim team lost by a whopping 201 points to the Country Club Wavemakers last Monday at Country Club’s pool, but Fairyland was without the services of some 19 point-scoring swimmers that night.
It was a totally different story atop Lookout Mountain Tuesday night as the Flash took over sole possession of first place in the Chattanooga Area Swim League’s Red division with a stirring 405-402 victory in the closest meet of the season so far in the league.
This meet had originally been scheduled for Thursday, but both teams are heading to Auburn for a big weekend meet and that’s why they decided to move it up a couple of days.
And what a meet it was.
The Flash bolted to an impressive 74-58 lead following the opening freestyle races and they never gave it up. Fairyland’s biggest lead came at 236-209 following the individual medleys, but things got really interesting in the final three events.
The Wavemakers used a 75-57 advantage in the backstroke races to get within nine points at 293-284 while the difference was 11 at 349-338 with only the free relays remaining.
Country Club won six of those final 10 races, but when Ellie Taliaferro touched the wall first to claim first place in the senior girls’ race, that clinched the win for the Flash.
“That was awesome,” stated Fairyland head coach Kristen Myers after her team secured first place in the Red division with its fourth win in five meets.
“They whipped us pretty good at their place last week when we were missing a bunch of key swimmers, but I don’t think we were predicted to win here tonight,” she smiled as the celebration continued among Fairyland supporters both young and old.
“We had some really strong finishes and I don’t think we had any disqualifications. We had a lot of fast swims and we out-touched a bunch of them at the end. That was probably the most fun I’ve ever had in 17 years of organized swimming.
“We had talked about last week’s meet and what we needed to do to make it closer. We were a lot more competitive today as everyone was cheering their hearts out the whole time. We knew how close it was, but we were able to hold them off in those final relays,” the 22-year-old recent graduate of the University of Evansville smiled.
Myers will be returning to Indiana in the fall as she enters graduate school to become a physical therapist assistant. And she’s currently engaged to be married as soon as her fiancé graduates from law school next spring, so she’s wrapping up a long and productive career living in Chattanooga.
“There are a lot of exciting things on the horizon for us and I’ve had more fun than I ever could have imagined as the head coach here after being an assistant for the past two years. But what a great way to end my time in Chattanooga,” she concluded.
Tuesday’s setback was the second for the Wavemakers after they forfeited a road meet to Calhoun on June 6. Country Club is now 3-2 and behind Calhoun at 3-1 for third place. The Country Club-Calhoun rematch is set for Monday, July 1.
Despite all of that, Country Club coach Stan Corcoran was really happy with the way his kids performed away from home Tuesday night.
“We lost by three points, but we had a good time and hung in there,” the veteran coach said almost immediately after his boys had won the 15-18 free relay.
“We had a couple of hiccups along the way and those little mistakes hurt in a meet like this, but what a great atmosphere this was tonight. It’s nice to have a close meet like this. I’d rather lose by three than win by 200 in a situation like this.
“This was a great summer swim league atmosphere. We had our opportunities, but again, those small mistakes really cost us,” Corcoran concluded.
Taliaferro was joined by teammates Sammy Jackson and Harrison Barnes for high-point honors with 19.
Adelaide Bond had 18 while Will Jackson and Teddy Wingfield both finished with 17.
Ryan Berry and Katie Grace Tudor both had 19 points for the Wavemakers while Caroline Schenck, Jared Foster and Sloane Graham all finished with 17.
Country Club will be back home to host Cleveland on Monday while Fairyland will have Monday off before going to Cleveland to face the Aqua Tigers on Thursday.
COUNTRY CLUB HIGH-POINT SCORERS:
19 – Ryan Berry, Katie Grace Tudor
17 – Caroline Schenck, Jared Foster, Sloane Graham
14 – Emmy Richey, Erik Buntin, Ian Frakes, Emerson Doty
13 – Caled Alameddine
11 – Margaret Anne Hudson, Sofia Bell, Conor Kinley, Helen Kates
10 – Abi Markey, Kayla Lee, Zeki House.
FAIRYLAND HIGH-POINT SCORERS:
19 – Ellie Taliaferro, Sammy Jackson, Harrison Barnes
18 – Adelaide Bonds
17 – Will Jackson, Teddy Wingfield
16 – Frances Bohner
14 – Madeline Bond
13 – Wilder Wingfield
12 – Ari Bond
11 – Evelyn Stein, Ben Bevill, Will Ozburn
10 – Drew Bond, Bella McBryar, Bo Ozburn, Jane Eiselstein.
(Email John Hunt at email@example.com)