The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


September 3, 2012

Joplin swimmers open season after 'practice meet'

The Joplin High School boys swimming team, which debuted last week in the non-scoring Springfield Relays, will make the short jaunt to Carthage today for dual competition at 4:30 p.m.

Lamar, Nevada and Seymour are expected in addition to the Tigers and Eagles, Joplin coach Blair Dance said Monday.

“We basically used the Springfield Relays as a practice meet,” Dance said. “They boys did well. They’ve continued to work hard. They all had decent showings. We wanted to see how their times compared to area and state.

“The competition tomorrow will show what they can do in individual events,” Dance said. “I’ve allowed them to pick their events for this one meet.

“It was their first high school meet (the Springfield Relays),” Dance said. “It was good for them to see what they needed to do. Now, it’s the individual events for them.”

Dance is assisted by Dustin Read in the revival of boys swimming at Joplin.

Dance said the Eagles will have two teams in the 200 medley relay.

One team consists of freshman Ramsey Ramirez (backstroke), junior Alex Chesney (breaststroke), sophomore Chris Martucci (butterfly) and freshman Blake Stearnes (freestyle).

Also, sophomore Cameron Ball, senior Kyle Dillon, senior Ryan Grant and freshman Christian Plassman will enter the medley relay.

Zach Altman, a freshman, will join Martucci, Ramirez and Stearnes in the 200 open freestyle, Dance said.

Ryan Grant and his brother, freshman Eric, will tackle the 200 individual medley.

Ball, Dillon, freshman Justin Armstrong, junior Sean Casey, junior Sam Croy, freshman James Kensington, freshman Tyler McGrew, freshman Rusty Phillips, sophomore Donovan Potts and junior Ethan Settle are in the 50 free.

Mason Jones, a freshman, Martucci and Stearnes opted for the open butterfly.

Freshman Michael Shrum, sophomore Michael Swanson, Armstrong, Casey, Dillon, Kensington, Plassman, Potts and Settle will be in the 100 free.

Altman and Chesney will try the 500 free, Dance said.

Three teams will represent Joplin in the 200 free relay. Jones, McGrew, Eric Grant and Swanson will make up one team. Another will consist of Shrum, Croy, Casey and Kensington. The third will be composed of Potts, Armstrong, Settle and Phillips.

Ball, both Grants, Jones, Phillips,. Ramirez and Shrum are backstroke candidates. Chesney, Croy, McGrew, Plassman and Swanson are the open breaststroke hopefuls.

Two Joplin teams will enter the 400 free relay. One quartet consists of Stearnes, Ryan Grant, Ramirez and Martucci. The other team contains Altman, Casey, Croy and Jones.

The Eagles will face something different on Saturday, Dance said, as they travel to Springfield for the Ozarks Invitational in the Foster Natatorium.

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