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Big numbers, hard work are paying off for Bowmen

Sherwood swims to sweeps against Wilsonville and Putnam
by: DAN BROOD FAST FRESHMAN — Sherwood High School freshman Julia Bush is on her way to victory in the 500-yard freestyle event during the Bowmen’s win over Putnam in a meet held at the North Clackamas Aquatic Park.

MILWAUKIE - Talented swimmers.

Bigger numbers.

And a lot of hard work.

The Sherwood High School boys and girls swim teams are hoping that all adds up to a successful 2011-2012 seasons.

So far, that seems to be just what's happening.

The Bowmen squads opened their season last week by getting sweeps of both Wilsonville and Putnam in Northwest Oregon Conference dual meets.

'It's going really good,' Sherwood junior Steven Dowdle said during the Bowmen's meet with Putnam, held Dec. 7 at the North Clackamas Aquatic Park. 'I think we have double the boys from last year. We've got a bunch of new freshmen.'

The Sherwood boys, with their bigger numbers, scored a 107-63 win over Putnam. The day before, the Bowmen boys bested Wilsonville 126-35 in a meet held at the Tualatin Swim Center.

The Sherwood girls also came away with a pair of wins. On Dec. 5, they edged Wilsonville 89-85. They followed that up with a 98-67 win over Putnam.

'The boys team lost two state qualifiers from last year's team and is in a rebuilding year with only five out of 14 swimmers returning from last year,' first-year Sherwood coach Robbert van Andel said. 'This year's girls team features a strong returning team with several new swimmers joining the team. Sherwood's team is one of the largest teams in the school's history at 34 swimmers - 14 boys and 20 girls.'

For the Sherwood boys, in their season opening win over Wilsonville, sophomore Ryan Ax and junior Tanner Varin each had a pair of individual wins.

Ax triumphed in the 200-yard freestyle in a time of 2 minutes, 7.12 seconds and he sprinted to victory in the 100 freestyle in 56.17.

Varin won the 500 freestyle in 5:47.87 and he had a winning time of 1:16.89 in the 100 breaststroke.

Dowdle swam to victory in the 100 butterfly in 1:06.67. Senior Devin McAravey won the 200 individual medley in 2:28.67. Freshman James Heinlein won the 100 backstroke in 1:12.34.

The Sherwood boys also placed first in all three relay events. In the 200 medley relay, the Bowmen team of Heinlein, sophomore Hao Tan, Dowdle and Ryan Ax won in a time of 1:59.27.

In the 200 freestyle relay, the Sherwood squad of Heinlein, Varin, Dowdle and McAravey won in 1:46.72. In the 400 freestyle relay, Sherwood's team of Tan, McAravey, Varin and Ax won in 3:54.73.

The Sherwood boys carried on the success the very next day during the win over Putnam.

'Back-to-back meets are tough,' Dowdle said. 'But it's good conditioning early on.'

Dowdle picked up a win for the second straight day, winning the 200 individual medley in the meet with Putnam in a time of 2:27.70.

'I wasn't really prepared for it,' he said. 'I hadn't swam much over the summer. But this is a good sign, I guess, and I'm having a lot of fun.'

Varin picked up two more individual victories. He placed first in the 200 freestyle in 2:08.23 and he won the 500 freestyle in 5:47.58.

Ax was first in the 50 freestyle in 24.92 and he won the 100 freestyle in 54.49. Tan triumphed in the 100 backstroke in 1:15.36. McAravey won the 100 butterfly in 1:05.36 and Heinlein won the 100 backstroke in 1:11.95.

In the 200 freestyle relay, the Sherwood team of Tan, Varin, Heinlein and Ax won in 1:42.25. In the 400 freestyle relay, the Bowmen combination of Tan, McAravey, Varin and Ax triumphed in 3:54.73.

For the Sherwood girls in the win over Wilsonville, senior Hailee Brownell, junior Emily Stevens and freshman Julia Bush each had a pair of individual wins.

Brownell triumphed in the 200 freestyle in 2:21.06 and she won 500 freestyle in 6:15.26.

Stevens had a winning time of 1:07.22 in the 100 butterfly and she won the 100 backstroke in 1:03.95. Bush sprinted to victory in the 50 freestyle in 26.09 and she had a winning mark of 57.07 in the 100 freestyle.

In the 200 medley relay, the Sherwood team of Stevens, senior Sam Oliszewski, Bush and Brownell won in 2:01.59. In the 400 freestyle relay, the team of Stevens, Brownell, junior Devon Greene and Bush won in 4:09.17.

For the Lady Bowmen in the meet against Putnam, Bush picked up another pair of victories. She won the 200 freestyle in 2:07.90 and she won the 500 freestyle in 5:41.22.

Stevens won the 200 individual medley in 2:29.13 and she had a winning time of 1:04.51 in the 100 backstroke. Brownell won the 50 freestyle in 28.64 and junior Jamie Steers won the 100 freestyle in 1:13.27.

In the 200 freestyle relay, the Sherwood team of Stevens, Brownell, junior Kaela De Kar and Bush had a winning time of 1:56.02. In the 400 freestyle relay, the Lady Bowmen squad of Stevens, Brownell, senior Emily Scharn and Bush won in 4:15.08.

The Sherwood girls got the win over Putnam despite losing two of their top swimmers to injury and illness.

'The swimmers swam great at the meet despite being tired from the day before and swimming events they don't normally swim,' van Andel said.

The Sherwood teams will be back in action Jan. 5 when they travel to Sandy for a league dual meet set to start at 4 p.m. at the Olin Bignall Aquatic Center.