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Franklin Regional swimming and diving team members eye additional qualifying performances

Michael Love
| Tuesday, January 16, 2018 6:27 p.m

The Franklin Regional swimming and diving teams always are well represented at the WPIAL championships at Pitt’s Trees Pool.

That is expected to be the case again this season. Several Panthers competitors already have secured their places in individual events at WPIALs, and all six relays had no trouble reaching qualifying cuts.

A half dozen swimming individuals — seniors Michelle Lopes and Ethan Yant, juniors Abigail Ramey and Patrick Cavanaugh and sophomores Elias Holm and Marshall Mao — already posted qualifying cuts from the opener at Seneca Valley in early December to McKeesport last week.

Ramey and Lopes both competed in relays at states last year, and Ramey added an individual swim at the PIAA meet in the 200 IM.

Cavanaugh and Yant returned this season after competing on the state’s biggest stage at Bucknell University.

Both swam together in relays, while Cavanaugh tested his mettle the 100 breast.

Senior Riley Rizzer and junior Julia Perry added their names to the qualifying lists for the WPIAL boys and girls diving championships, respectively, at the meet with Hempfield on Dec. 21.

When the calendar turned to January, junior Mason Fishell and Elissa Novelli punched their diving tickets to WPIALs against Penn Hills.

All four returned this season hoping to make it back to WPIALs after diving there last year.

Fishell placed fifth at WPIALs in 2017 and qualified for states.

A list of the top WPIAL times and point totals for swimming and diving in both Class AAA and AA are posted at wpial.org.

The swimming and diving qualifying standards also are on the WPIAL website .

Franklin Regional’s meet Tuesday at Latrobe, weather permitting, and Thursday’s home matchup at Gateway are expected to be settings for additional WPIAL-qualifying swims and dives.

The teams also will be gunning for top performances at the Westmoreland County Coaches Association diving championships Jan. 26 and the swimming championships the next day. Both again are at Derry.

Michael Love is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at mlove@tribweb.com or via Twitter @Mlove_Trib.

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