Redmond High’s swim team has the pool to itself this season.
The Panthers and Ridgeview have practiced at the same time at the Cascade Swim Center’s indoor pool. But this year, the schools worked with the Redmond Park and Recreation District on scheduling, which is allowing them to practice separately.
“Which is nice because we’re able to spread out in the pool and be so crammed into three lanes,” said Redmond coach Denise Maich. “Instead of 10 (swimmers) per lane, we’re able to get five or six per lane.”
And the Panthers needed the extra room. Between boys and girls varsity and junior varsity, Redmond has 33 swimmers this year, the most since Ridgeview opened in 2012. According to Spokesman archives, that’s an increase from 26 in 2017-18, 20 in 2016-17 and 12 in 2015-16, when some of the current swimmers were freshmen.
Redmond has three swimmers back from a 200-yard freestyle relay team that reached the Class 5A state meet this year, seniors Augie Tobish and Garrett McMichael and junior Jacob Crumrine. Tobish also qualified for two freestyle relays at state as a sophomore in 2017. Tobish is looking forward to the season.
“This is my last year to realize all my goals before I go off to college,” said Tobish, who hopes to compete in club swimming in college.
Tobish’s goals include a high placement at the February state meet and finishing under 50 seconds in the 100 freestyle, he said. That means Tuesday and Thursday morning practices at 5:30 a.m.
“I’m going to need to start working a little harder and spending more time in the weight room,” he said.
In their first team meet of the year, Redmond finished third of eight teams at the Dec. 8 Ridgeview Ravens Swimming Classic at Cascade.
The Panthers’ 42 points was tops among non-Class 6A schools, trailing only Bend and Mountain View.
At the meet, Tobish finished first in the 50 freestyle with a time of 26.43 seconds
The boys team has a freshman this year who could be headed for a successful stint at Redmond. Ryan Konop, who competed for seven years with the Redmond Aquatic Club Eels, is enjoying swimming in high school.
“I like the experience of being able to bring this to a more team-oriented environment, where club is more self-oriented,” Konop said.
Konop is already swimming multiple strokes.
“I’m definitely hoping to draw my times down this year and improve on some small things,” he said.
Konop had a second-place finish in the 100 freestyle at the Ridgeview meet, with a time of 59.49 seconds, as well as fourth place in the 100 backstroke, with a time of 1:08.63.
At this point, the team is still working in to shape with designs on improvements by February, Maich said. With the Bend schools, which took up many Intermountain Conference spots in the state meet, moved up to 6A, Redmond looks to increase its number of boys state qualifiers.
“We want to get them out of their comfort zone and get them to know they can do these things,” Maich said.
With the graduation of Loryn Trail, who reached state all four years at Redmond, the girls team is made up largely of underclassmen. Maich said some of the girls are beginners, though they got help from being on Redmond’s club water polo team in the fall.
“Our girls team is a little on the growing side of it,” she said.
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