Coach Amanda Aimone cheers on Ben Wergin at the state boys’ swim meet last season. The Ranger boys’ swim team will have their first competition on Friday, Dec. 8, in Pinedale. (FILE PHOTO)
The Kemmerer boys’ swim team started practice last week, and they will have their first meet of the season on Friday, Dec. 8, at Pinedale.
Coach Amanda Aimone, who also coached the girls’ swim team to strong performances at state this season, discussed her hopes for the new boys’ swim season.
Carl Krell and Adam Aase are the two seniors on the team, according to Aimone.
“I hope to see them take a leadership role through the season and help the underclassmen and the team towards success,” Aimone said.
Aimone said the team is returning several swimmers who performed well at state last season.
“I believe that all the guys are key swimmers because we need every one to help get us to our goals,” Aimone said. “However, some that stand out are returning sophomores Ben Wergin, Easton Rydstrom and Collin Smith.”
Aimone said these swimmers were qualifiers last year as freshmen and key players at state.
Aimone also said senior Carl Krell will be a key to the team’s success this season.
“[Krell is] one of the top swimmers in the state and he has a chance to really help the team and do some great things,” Aimone said.
Aimone said she is excited for the new season, especially for some fresh talent on the boys’ team.
“Brayden Dearden is a freshman. I think he needs to be mentioned because I have seen a real focus in Brayden,” Aimone said. “He is driven and I think he will be a key player this year.”
Aimone said her goals for the team this season are straightforward. Anyone who visits a practice or meet knows that Aimone’s swimmers respect her and do their best to take the advice of their coach and improve.
“I expect these boys to work hard, stay focused on their goals and come together as a team,” Aimone said. “Every guy brings something unique to the table that we need. We will need every one of them to help us become a team and be successful.”
Aimone said she hopes her swimmers’ work in the off-season will pay off as they start competing in meets.
“I encouraged them to swim in the off-season and go to camps,” Aimone said. “Just being in the water will be good for them, but going to camps can help them to better their skills. There was a group of boys led by Ben (Wergin) who started swimming early in November, and I think that will be beneficial.”
Aimone has taught and coached at Kemmerer for a few years, but she was also a student athlete for Kemmerer during high school. She still holds some of the school’s swimming records.
“I think I have a better appreciation for our school because it helped me be successful and I want the same thing for my student athletes,” Aimone said. “I believe coming from Kemmerer and being able to coach kids from my hometown makes it special and I hold these kids and this school in a special place in my heart. It’s just a pleasure to be here and I consider myself lucky.”
The first home meet for the boys’ swim team is on Dec. 19.