Crowl advances to state finals in swimming

By Amanda Crowl, staff writer

Senior Ben Crowl and freshman Brittany Houck competed as part of the Meadville Bulldogs swim team at the  PIAA D10 championships, which were held at the Spire Institute on March 1-2. By the end of the first day, Crowl knew he was headed to the state finals as part of the 200 yard medley team that finished with a time of 1:40.59.

Crowl stands in 5th place after the 100 yard breaststroke competition.

There are a total of three relays and eight individual races spread across a two-day period. Crowl and Houck each swam in two relays and two individual events with the Meadville Bulldogs swim team.

Crowl qualified for districts in the 200 yard medley relay, 200 yard IM, 200 yard freestyle relay, and the 100 yard breaststroke. He took fifth place in his 200 yard IM (2:20.92), third in the 200 yard freestyle relay (1:39.20), and fifth in the 100 yard breaststroke (1:05.86). In his 100 yard breaststroke, he lost to one of his teammates by one hundredth of a second.

Swimming in two relays and two individual races, Brittany Houck took home three second places and one fourth place. Her times are as follows: 200 yard freestyle relay (1:41.25), 100 yard freestyle (55:15), 400 yard freestyle relay (3:49.87), 100 yard breaststroke (1:10.24).

Crowl and Houck gave their best last Friday and Saturday swimming at districts. Crowl will continue into states, and Houck will train harder to follow in his footsteps next year. “I definitely need to push harder at practice so it will benefit me in the long run,” Houck said.

The state finals will be held at Bucknell University on March 15. “I’m excited about the experience of being a state swimmer,” Crowl said.

Crowl caps successful swim season at Districts

by Dustin Steiger, broadcast director


Ben Crowl successfully completes the 100 breaststroke on Saturday, Mar. 3.

Junior Ben Crowl has been pushing all season for districts, and his efforts most certainly paid off.

For three years, Crowl has been swimming for Meadville Bulldog swim team, but this season has been his best. He qualified for districts in the 200 IM with a time of 2:25:34, and in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:12:29. This all led to the pinnacle of his season. On March 2-3 Crowl went with his team to Districts at the Spire Institute of Ohio, prepared to go big or go home.

At Districts, he smashed his own PR in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:08:75, shaving an entire 3.5 seconds off and placing eighth in the event overall. He also swam a 2:22:61 in the 200 IM, once again beating his own record and placing seventh in the process. This winning streak continued as Crowl and his team placed third in the 200 medley relay and second in the 400 free relay, ending the team’s season with a bang.

“It was my best [season] so far…” Crowl said. “I’m going to train hard in the off season and prepare to go even faster next year.”

Lone Panther qualifies for Districts in swimming

by Laura Monico, social media editor

Ben Crowl

Junior Ben Crowl, who swims for the Meadville Bulldogs, will swim at districts this weekend.

Saegertown junior Ben Crowl has clinched his spot for the 2018 District 10 championships at the SPIRE Institute. Crowl, who swims for the Meadville Bulldogs, will compete in four events starting this Friday March 2.  

Crowl has qualified for the 200 IM, Medley relay, 100 m breaststroke, and the 400 m free relay. He qualified for the 200 IM with a time of 2:25:34 and the 100 m breaststroke with a time of 1:12:29. For the two individual events in which he qualified, Crowl’s time was a personal best. “I am a lot better than last year. I started lifting weights and swimming over the summer to better prepare for this season,” Crowl said. For this weekend, he hopes to “swim fast and set new personal records.”

Districts begins this Friday and Crowl will be competing in the 200 IM and the medley relay. He will race in the 100 M breaststroke and the 400 M free relay on Saturday. Crowl feels like he is prepared for this weekend. “My coaches have been a huge influence on my swimming abilities this past season,” he said.  


Saegertown swimmers headed to states

By Braeden Kantz, staff writer 



From left: J.J. Gowetski (CASH), Averie Braymer, Brittany Houck, Olivia Philbrick (Mdvl), and Peyton Bailey (SES) have qualified for the free relay at the state swim meet on Saturday, March 25 in State College, Pa. 

Under the surface and missed by the radar, two of Saegertown’s lady athletes swam their way to the state competition in Penn State this weekend. In the 11&12 age division, seventh graders Brittany Houck and Averie Braymer are two of ten swimmers on their Myst Makos YMCA team headed to states.

Houck and Braymer’s team is currently undefeated in meets, and they set a  section record of 1:50 in the relay on their journey to states. Houck, one of the state qualifiers, has shown significant improvement over the season, dropping over two seconds in her free stroke and helping her team trim several more seconds in relay races. “Last year I didn’t even make it to states, now I’m seeded top 12,” Houck said.

In order to qualify for states, an individual must place in the top six spots or have one of the top six times from the individuals who didn’t qualify originally.

Even with constant training and endless practices, it’s widely known how far a good team can push a focused athlete. Braymer said, “They (her team) push me. I want to beat the time goals of my friends.” The team’s methods are obviously working as they captured a second place overall team award.

With the state competition closing in fast, the girls will scramble to shave down their times for Saturday, March 25 in the Penn State Natatorium. 

Saegertown swimmers stroke to success

By Payton Brooks, social media editor 

Another breed of athlete at Saegertown has been cultivated over the past years, and they are of an aquatic nature.

 “I like (swimming) a lot because I get to hang out with everyone on the team. It’s a good experience, and it’s fun,” said sophomore Ben Crowl. He competes with the Meadville program during the winter sport season. He began swimming four years ago and has improved in every aspect. Of the techniques used in high school that may include breaststroke, brushstroke, backstroke, butterfly, or freestyle, Crowl can boast that his best time is at the 120 yard brushstroke. At the Dec. 19 meet against Erie East, Erie Central, and Strong Vincent, Meadville came out victorious.

Two up-and-coming seventh graders are also enrolled in swimming programs at Meadville. Averie Braymer and Brittany Houck can be seen hitting the pool with the Y.M.C.A. MYST team, which takes competitors from age 5 to 18. On Saturdays, they compete at other Y.M.C.A.s. In the 50 yard freestyle, Braymer’s best time is 31 seconds, and Houck’s is 27 seconds. The girls are constantly working to improve their times in the different competitions.