Third year Delta County swim coach Karoline Roome is excited with this year's turnout for swimming. The Panthers show more than 25 athletes making waves at Bill Heddles Recreation Center during practice sessions.
Kendra Hillman was a state qualifier last season in both the 100 breaststroke and 50 freestyle where she placed 16th in both. Delta's 200 freestyle relay also made a post-season appearance and shaved three seconds off its season-best time.
"I hope to see growth in all my swimmers. Place does not matter. Time off (swim times) and love for swimming is what matters," stated Roome.
The season features as many as 13 meets, which began Nov. 30 with the Delta Invitational and running through Feb. 2 (Western Slope Meet at CMU). The state meet is slated for Feb. 7-9 for those who earn extended competition with qualifying times.
Roome sees senior Abby Williams (100 breaststroke) and sophomore Hailee Ruble (100 backstroke) as two swimmers who could be top performers for the Panthers this season.
With just three seniors on this year's team, Delta is looking for improvement each time out. Joining Williams as a senior athlete for the Panthers is Autumn Eddy and Ashley Lahoe.
Junior swimmers include Nadia Hill, Kalinn Komives, Hannah Philman, Madalyn Sandridge, Kiarrah Schotten and Sydnie West.
Alyssa Bayles, Allison Davis, Alaiha Hoffbauer, Grace Hall, Emma Purvis and Hannah Sterns join Ruble as sophomores on the roster.
Freshmen swimmers are Karlie Egging, Emily Goodrich, Elizabeth Lawrence, Bailey Miller, Emma Wise and Pearl Burrus.
Linda Hollingshead is back for her second season working with Roome as an assistant coach for the Delta County team.