PAWS swimmers compete at 2024 GISL State Championship Meet

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Senior PAWS swimmers, from left, Sophia McDevitt, Natalie Kent and Emily Dowd carry the PAWS banner for the parade of athletes at GISL State Meet March 9. Photo courtesy of Jim Dowd

The Perry Area Winter Swim Team (PAWS) competed in the 2024 Greater Iowa Swim League (GISL) state meet on Saturday, March 9.

The league in composed of 18 teams: Boone, Carroll, Clarinda, Denison, Des Moines East, Life Time Swim, Emmetsburg, Estherville, Grinnell, Harlan, Indianola, Knoxville, Manning, Newton, Pella, Perry, Spencer and Woodbine.

The season began in early November and concluded at the State Meet at the downtown Des Moines YMCA in mid-March. The swimmers compete at various meets through the season. Perry hosted three meets this year, hosting about 200 athletes at each meet.

In order to qualify to compete at the State Meet, a swimmer mush achieve a qualifying time in an event for his or her age and gender group.

PAWS had some 93 swimmers on the roster this season, and 45 swimmers competed at the GISL State Swim Meet on March 9. The Perry team was coached by Dana Stein and Weston Lucht, with assistance from Zoe Hibbert and Ethan Winey.

The 2024 Sportsmanship All-Star award recipient, chosen by the coaching staff, was Ellie Hughes, and the 2024 Volunteer Award went to Elsa Reyes. Each age/gender group is also awarded a State Meet High Point award, and two PAWS swimmers received High Point awards for their age groups this year: Boys 8U: Drake Strehle and Girls 15-18: Sophia McDevitt.

Registration for the Perry Summer Swim Team opens online Monday April 1. In-person registration and suit fitting is Saturday, April 27 from 9-11 a.m. at the McCreary Community Building. Practices begin Tuesday, May 28.

The results of the top four individual finishes and top three relay teams for Perry were as follows:

First Place Individual Finishes
Drake Strehle- 8U Boys 100 Freestyle, 8U Boys 50 Butterfly, 8U Boys 25 Backstroke
Issac Armbrecht- 8U Boys 25 Breaststroke
Aleah Karolus- 13/14 Girls 100 Freestyle, 13/14 Girls 50 Freestyle
Issac Winey- 13/14 Boys 50 Backstroke
Sophia McDevitt- 15-18 Girls 200 Individual Medley, 15-18 Girls 50 Butterfly, and 15-18 Girls 100 Butterfly

Second Place Individual Finishes
Arizona Astley- 8U Girls 100 Freestyle, 8U Girls 50 Backstroke
Cali Hernandez- 13/14 Girls 50 Butterfly
Natalie Kent- 15-18 Girls 500 Freestyle, 15-18 Girls 200 Freestyle
Ray Hughes- 9/10 Boys 500 Freestyle
Issac Winey- 13/14 Boys 100 Yard Individual Medley
Harper Peterson- 13/14 Girls 50 Backstroke
Cordell Wolfe- 11/12 Boys 200 Freestyle
Sophia Stein- 8U Girls 100 Individual Medley

Third Place Individual Finishes
Sophia Stein- 8U Girls 25 yard freestyle, 8U girls 50 Freestyle
Natalie Kent- 15-18 Girls 100 Freestyle
Maya Anderson- 9/10 Girls 500 Freestyle
Isabella Stein- 11/12 Girls 500 Freestyle
Emily Dowd- 15-18 Girls 500 Freestyle
Meranda Gruber- 13/14 Girls 100 Individual Medley
Aleah Karolus- 13/14 Girls 200 Freestyle
Bryan Anderson – 13/14 Boys 500 Freestyle
Lauren Riley- 11/12 Girls 200 Freestyle

Fourth Place Individual Finishes
Emily Dowd- 15-18 Girls 100 Freestyle
Kilee Hughes- 11/12 Girls 200 Freestyle
Arizona Astley- 8U Girls 25 Yard Butterfly
Ellie Hughes- 13/14 Girls 500 Freestyle
Cali Hernandez- 13/14 Girls 100 Yard Individual Medley
Graham Clark- 9/10 Boys 50 Breaststroke

Relay Finishes (through third place)
First Place Relay Finishes:
13/14 Girls Medley Relay- Harper Peterson, Aleah Karolus, Cali Hernandez and Malia Jacobson
15-18 Girls Freestyle Relay- Natalie Kent, Emily Dowd, Elizabeth Drake, and Sophia McDevitt

Second Place Relay Finishes
8U Girls 100 Yard Medley Relay- Kennedy Knorr, Sophia Stein, Arizona Astley, Lyla Martinson
8U Girls 100 Yard Freestyle Relay- Arizona Astley, Kennedy Knorr, Lyla Martinson, Sophia Stein
8U Boys 100 Yard Freestyle Relay- Luke Herron, Issac Armbrecht, Fabian Banuelos, Drake Strehle
11/12 Girls Freestyle Relay- Isabella Stein, Lillian Lucht, Lauren Riley, Kilee Hughes
13/14 Girls Freestyle Relay- Meranda Gruber, Harper Peterson, Cali Hernandez, Aleah Karolus

Third Place Relay Finishes
9/10 Boys Freestyle Relay- Sebastian Banuelos, Graham Clark, Lyle Jacobson, Ray Hughes
9/10 Boys Medley Relay- Lyle Jacobson, Ray Hughes, Graham Clark, Sebastian Banuelos
11/12 Girls Medley Relay- Lillian Lucht, Tatum Newel, Kilee Hughes, Isabella Stein
9/10 Girls Freestyle Relay- Madi White, Colbie Newel, Mora Moreno, Maya Anderson
11/12 Boys Freestyle Relay- Meyer Chance, Dexter Moe, Deacon Crawley, Cordell Wolfe
11/12 Boys Medley Relay- Dexter Moe, Cordell Wolfe, Deacon Crawley, Meyer Chance
15/18 Girls Medley Relay- Emily Dowd, Meranda Gruber, Sophia McDevitt, Natalie Kent

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