The Student Voice of North Allegheny Senior High School

The Uproar

The Student Voice of North Allegheny Senior High School

The Uproar

The Student Voice of North Allegheny Senior High School

The Uproar

Session of a Lifetime

Another record-breaking season for the Swimming and Diving Team
NA girls swimming and diving team win PIAA State Championship for second year in a row. (photo courtesy of Danny Lesinski)

For every one of North Allegheny’s stellar athletic programs, repeated dominance in the WPIAL and PIAA tournaments always entails pressure and uncertainty. Last week, the Swimming and Diving Team once again proved that they were up to the challenge.

Both the boys’ and girls’ teams went 10-0 this season, continuing the girls’ undefeated dual meet streak of 16 years. The girls broke the record for most consecutive WPIAL wins, which they had also broken the previous year, making it a sweet 16.  The boys also won WPIAL, making it two years in a row. 

On March 13th and 14th, the AAA Swimming PIAA Championship took place at Bucknell University.

Going into the meet, head coach Patrick Wenzel sat the women’s team down and told them they had a real shot of winning the championship, and his swimmers did not miss the message.

“Winning states would be the best way to end my high school career,” NASH senior Natalie Sens said heading into the tournament.

The NA swimmers traveled to Lewisburg, PA on Tuesday morning and the competition began bright and early Wednesday morning.  The men had the morning session, and the women had the afternoon.  

During prelims on the first day, the men swam well, and the women had good relays but were struggling overall.  The highlights for the men’s finals on day one included the 200 Medley Relay of senior William Gao, junior Gus Miller, senior Riley Williams, and junior Grant Regule earning 4th place overall.  Sophomore Danny Lesinski soared through the water and secured 7th place in the 200 IM, and Miller got 15th.  Regule captured 7th in the 50 Free.  Gao fought for 3rd place in 100 Fly.  The 200 Free Relay of Danny Lesinski, Grant Regule, Riley Williams, and sophomore Zachary Totin placed 4th.

The women’s highlights included the 200 Medley Relay of senior Greta Mott, sophomore Tori Tieppo, sophomore Eva Ogden, and Natalie Sens earning 3rd place.  Sophomore Claire Bacu got 9th in the 200 Free.  Mott placed 15th in the 50 Free.  Sens took 3rd in the 100 Fly.  The 200 Free Relay of Eva Ogden, Natalie Sens, Sophomore Madden Woycheck, and Claire Bacu got 5th.

That was one of the most special sessions I have ever watched, and I’ve watched national records be broken.

— Patrick Wenzel, Head Coach

Although the girls did well, they were expected to have placed higher in the 200 Free Relay and have had more girls swimming individual events in finals.  After day one, many were skeptical if the NA girls could pull off a win.

Day two prelims went just as the day before for both teams.  

“It was a lot of swimming over a short period of time,” Miller said. “No one is accustomed to that.”

At finals on the second (and last) day, highlights included Totin getting 8th and Regule taking 10th in the 100 free.  Senior Josh Berty got 14th in the 500 Free.  Gao got 13th, Lesinski got 14th, and Miller placed 15th in the 100 back.  The 400 free relay of Zachary Totin, William  Gao, Gus Miller, and Danny Lesinski got 5th.  

The boys finished in third place with 166.5 points, which was a big improvement from tenth place last year.

Even though the women had a tough start to the meet, their three divers, junior Juliet Hood, junior Lola Malarky, and sophomore Maggie Lapina, earned 2nd, 3rd, and 10th, lunging the girls’ team from 4th to 1st.  

Heading into finals, the girls knew they had to change the momentum if they wanted to win.

Freshman Julia Tengowski was the first NA swimmer in the water that night, swimming the 500 Free.  She rose to the occasion and dropped another three seconds from prelims that morning, placing 11th.  Bacu took 7th, keeping the momentum going and raising hope.  The positive change to the atmosphere showed when Mott went from her seed place of 15th to 9th in the 100 back.  Before the 100 breaststroke, NA was only ahead by one point.  Sens rose to the top, taking 1st place in the 100 Breaststroke.  Tieppo took 10th. 

After the 100 Breast, NA was ahead with only one event to go.  The 400 free relay was the last event of the meet.  Eva Ogden, Claire Bacu, sophomore Dani Hinkson, and Greta Mott knew they had to get 4th in the relay in order to stay ahead of Upper Dublin, who were seeded higher in the relay.

The four girls managed to get fourth and help their team to another PIAA title. The final score was 211 for North Allegheny, with Upper Dublin with 203 as runner up.

Wenzel named Tengowski and Lesinski as swimmers of the meet.

“That was one of the most special sessions I have ever watched,” Wenzel said following the championship, “and I’ve watched national records be broken.”

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About the Contributor
Greta Mott
Greta Mott, Senior Staff Writer
Greta Mott is a senior at NASH.  She swims for the NA swim team.  She hopes to major in Marketing and minor in Film Production in College.

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