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Dawson County swim team closes season with two events
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Senior Garrett Perez swims the 100-yard butterfly Jan. 30 in the Last Chance Meet in Adairsville. - photo by For the Dawson County News

The Dawson County swim team wrapped up the season with two of their largest events of the season as the teams competed Jan. 30 in the Last Chance Meet in Adairsville and Feb. 2 in the Spartan-Mustang Relays.

After a pair of successful competitions during the final weeks of January, the Tigers entered the Last Chance Meet with high hopes for several swimmers. Unfortunately, on the day of the meet itself five swimmers were stricken by illness and the team was unable to take the pool at full strength.

“On Thursday we had five swimmers out sick,” Head Coach Linda Sperin said. “We did a good job despite having to compensate for the missing swimmers.”

The highlights of the day came from junior Matthew Wood as he placed first in the 100-yard backstroke with a blistering pace of 1:01.02 and finished second in the 50-yard freestyle event by less than a second with a time of 0:23.91.

Wood’s efforts led the boys’ team to a fourth-place finish with a score of 111 for the day and the women turned in a sixth-place performance with 56 points in the event to lead the to fifth place overall with a combined 167 points.

For the final event of the season, the team participated in the Spartan-Mustang Relay meet at the Mountain View Aquatic Center in Marietta. The event was unique in the Dawson County season as it featured only relay events, to include and 8x25 relay in which each participant only swims one lap of the pool.

“This meet was totally different than any this year,” Sperin said.  “It was our first time going to this meet, but we will definitely go back next season.”

The event featured approximately 300-350 swimmers from 14 schools across north Georgia and the Tigers found themselves faced with some of the stiffest competition the team had seen all season which, when combined with the lingering effect of the team’s recent battle with the flu, consistently put them on the wrong side of the scoreboard.

When all was said and done, the Tigers’ highest finish of the day was a ninth-place showing in the meet’s showcase event, the 8x25 yard freestyle, by the boys’ relay team. The team was made up of seniors Ethan Cameron, Cooper Freeman, Will Mulberry and junior Trystan Morris.

In order to acknowledge the end of the season and to recognize the contributions of the senior classes from every school, the final event of the night was an event more about fun than competition. During the Senior Relay, participants could dress up in costumes and swim with props.

“It was awesome. They didn't really swim...” Sperin said. “They jumped and front flipped in and then just played around in the pool.  All of the lanes were full of seniors.” 

Overall Dawson County finished the meet in ninth place with a combined total of 350 points. The boys team cracked the top ten with 210 points to finish ninth as well, and the girls team fell just outside of a top-10 finish with 140 points on the day.

The meets marked the end of the Dawson County swim season for every member of the team with the exception of Wood, who qualified for the Feb. 8  GHSA state meet at Georgia Tech earlier in the season.