What might have been: PHS swim team had high hopes
The Petaluma swim team, coached by Eric Hoffman and Sarah Greeson, turned in a number of impressive times during the early season (especially on the girls side) before the COVID-19 virus put a premature end to the Trojan campaign.
Girls talent loaded
Most impressive was the girls’ one-point win over Vine Valley Athletic League favorite (and last year’s champion) Napa High in March.
One week later, the girls’ team turned in a dominant performance against crosstown rival Casa Grande in the Egg Meet, only to see the season canceled.
Leading the way for Petaluma was freshman sensation Ava Carrigan in the 200 IM (2 minutes, 8.92 seconds) and 100 fly (1:02.54).
Support came from the sophomore duo of Katie Honey in the 100 breast (1:08.79) and 200 free (2:04.95), and Sasha Grace Andrews in the 100 fly (1:05.96) and 200 IM (2:27.17).
There were no weaknesses in the girls’ lineup, as steady seniors Ana Larson in the 100 breast (1:07.53) and 200 IM (2:23.49) and Aurora Beaumond in the 200 free (2:08.25) and 500 free (5:42.68) capped amazing four-year careers.
Junior Abbey Kreutz completed the girls’ lineup in the 100 free (59.58) and 200 IM (2:23.49), providing no relief for opposing squads.
Several school records were expected to fall in 2020, starting with the 200 IM relay (Carrigan, Kreutz, Larson, Honey, 1:54.80) and 400 free relay (Carrigan, Beaumond, Kreutz, Honey, 4:04.19), but nature intervened and this historically fast squad will have to wait until next year, minus outstanding seniors Larson and Beaumond.
Woods leads boys
On the boys’ side, the Trojans were led by four-year letterman and co-captain Cooper Woods, who excelled in the 100 breast (1:03.62) and 100 IM (2:10.53) and co-captain Gavin Newell (aka “the Gov”).
Woods and several girls were all expected to make the very competitive North Coast Section Meet.
Reliable support was provided by Victoria Canela, Sunshine Sather, Emilie Box, Michael Duffy, Alexander Starling, Xavier Gonzalez-MacCall, Derek Honey, Brendan McMahon, Tyler Ruiz, Luca Binsfeld-Debus and Sam Saltonstall, all projected to be top 16 finishers in the conference.
Graduating swim seniors contemplating college success include Ana Larson (Arizona State University), Cooper Woods Arizona State University), Aurora Beaumond (Bates College), Gavin Newell (University of Oregon), Derek Honey, Angelique Lindberg, Sam Saltonstall, and Dylan Harris.
Many of the remaining swimmers hope to play on the combined Petaluma and Casa Grande club water polo team due to enter the water this fall, virus pending.