DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for nearly four decades. He covered high school sports on several occasions as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State sports. From 2008-14, he was a staff writer for, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Xavier swimmers, divers have fresh start

The Xavier Prep swimmers and divers are ready to take the plunge.
The Gators will have their first official meet of the season on Thursday (Sept. 1), when Anthem Boulder Creek comes to the Brophy Pool. Events begin at 4 p.m.
Xavier has been practicing for a little more than two weeks under the guidance of new coach Maureen “Mo’’ Rankin.
Rankin has been around the sport for many years, including time as a coach at the Phoenix Swim Club. So she knows how to balance the hard work with the fun aspects.
The coach spent the early days of workouts pacing back and forth on the deck, urging her swimmers to build up their endurance through conditioning and maintain the proper techniques. Most of the girls have competed in club swimming and continue to work with those teams, even in the fall.
“We have about 34 swimmers out, including about 16 returnees,’’ Rankin said.
“We have good representation in all of the events, including some good young swimmers, and it is exciting.’’
The seniors are the smallest group this year, and freshmen the largest, Rankin said.
“Some will be going to state for the first time, and that’s one of the fun parts of it,’’ she said.
“We have a good group and haven’t had any problems. I guess it is a different atmosphere than in some past years. I am told by people who have been around awhile that these girls appear to be more focused. It’s more of a team atmosphere.’’

Xavier swim and dive roster – 2016
**Denotes diver.
Quinn Blake, Sr.; Megan Brown, Jr.; Morgan Brown, Fr.; **Molly Cahill, Soph.; Maddie Campbell, Sr.; Samantha Cardinal, Fr.; Clare Carlson, Soph.; Thea Cartier, Jr.; Lulu Castro, Soph.; Ava DiStefano, Sr.; **Talle Donley, Soph.; Vica Dow, Fr.; Isabel Gomez, Soph.; Kyle Gunzy, Jr.; Taylor Guthrie, Jr.; Charlotte Heffron, Fr.; Carlie Hermann, Fr.; Kate Hubbard, Jr.; Haley Hubbard, Fr.; Maggie Hull, Soph.; **Hannah Jemsek, Fr.; Nicole Johnson, Jr.; Jocelyn Jones, Sr.; Mia Joslin, Fr.; Nina LaFave, Soph.; Audrey Lamp, Fr.; **Alyssa Largay, Soph.; Kaitlyn McCoy, Jr.; Lilly Nolan, Fr.; **Camryn Olhausen, Sr.; Olivia Paliscak, Fr.; Emili Palmisano, Fr.; Alex Perez, Jr.; Mady Perich, Soph.; **Isabella Plumb, Soph.; Mary Roediger, Jr.; Gracie Schumacher, Fr.; **Mady Sewell, Fr.; Riley Smith, Jr.; Veronica Tanner, Fr.; Katherine Whitlow, Fr.; Cat Worth, Soph.; Maddie Wright, Fr.

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