Yes, the season is on hiatus.
But, before the shutdown, Lackawanna League swimmers already started making waves during the preseason. In the weeks leading up to what should have been the start to the season, three Times-Tribune All-Region athletes from last season committed to NCAA Division I programs.
Peter KAWASH | LAKELAND
Lauren SCHOFIELD | SCRANTON PREP
Seton Hall University
Maddie HEALEY | DUNMORE
In addition to making NCAA Division I college commitments, the swimmers did have some early competitions before the shutdown.
Lakeland’s Peter Kawash has been active, swimming at both the Keystone Aquatic Championships and the USA Swimming Winter Championships in Carlisle.
In the Aquatic Championships, Maddie Healey also competed, while Lauren Schofield and Sierra Gillan also took part in the USA Swimming Winter Championships.
Kawash, Healey compete at invitational in Carlisle
Lakeland’s Peter Kawash and Dunmore’s Maddie Healey turned in strong performances this weekend at the Keystone Aquatics Christmas meet in Carlisle.
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Lackawanna League stars compete at USA Swimming Winter Championships
Scranton Prep senior Lauren Schofield had a top finish at the USA Swimming 18-under Winter Championships in Carlisle.
The returning All-Region swimmer placed fourth in the girls 18-under 200-yard breaststroke with a time of 2 minutes, 21.10 seconds in the final high school contest for athletes in the state until Jan. 4 at the earliest because of Gov. Tom Wolf’s COVID-19 mitigation restrictions that suspended youth sports.
Schofield’s finish highlighted the performances of athletes from the Lackawanna League at the meet that included the top swimmers from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware.
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A LOOK AHEAD
OK, so let’s stay optimistic.
Gov. Tom Wolff says the shutdown is on until Jan. 4. Let’s say it takes 15 days to catch up and get practices in, the earliest we may see meets is Jan. 20.
It does appear that the PIAA is looking to adjust its postseason schedule. Nothing has been set in stone just yet, but I know one of the major stumbling blocks for swimming will be the availability for a venue to host the state championship meets that have been held at Bucknell University’s Kinney Natatorium.
Let’s hope for the best.
Here are the top returning athletes in the Lackawanna League
2020 TIMES-TRIBUNE GIRLS SWIMMER OF THE YEAR
SIERRA GILLAN | Delaware Valley
2020 PIAA CLASS 3A: Finished 12th in the 100-yard butterfly (56.16) and 27th in the 100 breaststroke (1:06.95).
2020 DISTRICT 2-4 CLASS 3A: Gold in 100 butterfly (56.60; meet record); Gold in 100 breaststroke (1:06.33).
2020 NOTABLE: Won gold in 200 medley relay and bronze in the 400 free relay at District 2-4 Class 3A championships. … Gold in 100 butterfly (56.65; meet and pool record); Gold in 100 backstroke (56.46; meet and pool record) at Les Richards Championships. … Led Delaware Valley to District 2 Class 3A championship. … Third All-Region selection.
2020 TIMES-TRIBUNE BOYS SWIMMER OF THE YEAR
PETER KAWASH | Lakeland
2020 DISTRICT 2 CLASS 2A: Gold in 200 individual medley (1:58.40); Gold in 100 backstroke (51.84; meet record).
2020 NOTABLE: Won gold in the 100 butterfly (53.25) and gold in the 100 backstroke (53.12; pool record) at the Les Richards Championships. … Won gold in the 100 backstroke (53.62; pool and meet record), gold in the 100 butterfly (53.53; meet record) and gold in the 200 individual medley (2:00.9) at the Ernie Shartle Invitational at Tunkhannock. … Won silver in the 200 individual medley (2:01.71) and silver in the 100 backstroke (53.54) at the Kinney Natatorium High School Open at Bucknell University. … Third All-Region selection.
Joby Fawcett has covered high school sports — including football, girls and boys volleyball, girls and boys tennis, girls and boys swimming, boys basketball, girls and boys track and field, and girls and boys lacrosse — for 22 years. The High School Sports Blog offers deeper insights plus statistical and historical information for fans and features photos, videos and graphics along with Top 5 polls for tennis and volleyball. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9100 x5367; @sportsTT