A big Day 1 for Emma Seiberlich >> A little snow-crossed luck could work for Episcopal Academy. The 2014 Daily Times Female Swimmer of the Year will swim her individual events Friday – the 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly – to free her up for SATs Saturday morning, an exam cancelled by snow in January. Last year, Seiberlich won the 100 fly and 100 backstroke, and teammate Alex Sumner being the top seed in the 100 back allows the junior to branch out. Her relay slate isn’t set yet. But if the 400 free represents her only Saturday swim, expect something special.
The Delco boys at the top >> The 500 free will be a highlight; Haverford School’s Matt Haigh and fast-rising Brian Brennan will battle EA’s Ivan Puskovitch for medals. But the 100 back and 100 fly present a fascinating dynamic, with the Fords’ Charlie Ryan and Alex Boratto and EA’s Ben Baturka comprising the top three seeds in both. Baturka is first in the 100 fly after a sterling showing at Inter-Acs, and Boratto is tops in his specialty backstroke. The familiarity between the trio should breed compelling races.
The diving boost >> Episcopal Academy’s Andrew Owsiany faces a battle with last year’s runner-up, Christian DeVol of Hill School, to claim the title, and diving includes a chance to augment the team title chases. Haverford School’s Alec Tyminski is one of five Haverford School divers hoping to score, while Maia Golub leads a three-diver strong contingent for the EA girls.
The quiet of the 100 free >> The sprint opens the second day, and it’s usually a quiet one for Haverford School and EA girls, on paper. The event lends itself to the established sprint programs or smaller schools with one-off stars, and the helter-skelter event is tough to forecast. That also allows for bonus points for the unexpected. A leap by EA’s Maddie O’Reilly, seeded 16th, into the B final would be valuable. Likewise, Haverford School’s David Mitchell is 16th, and the Fords have a handful of youngsters in the low 30s.
Agnes Irwin in the mix >> Last year, the Owls surprised many by jumping into fifth place in the team race. They could have big points in the offing via Riley Flick (100 fly, 100 free) and Maddie Aguirre (200 IM, 100 breast) both with a chance to make multiple A finals. All three relays are seeded in the B-final range, and a leap into an A final would help immensely.