Patriot powerhouse — Brilliant Mackenna Briggs leads Liberty to 2A state swim title

November 18, 2014

Skyline’s Kathy Lin/relays medal and Issaquah’s Jenifer Matsuda picks up two

Just three days before the last state swim final of her career, Liberty High School star Mackenna Briggs was calm and determined.

By Greg Farrar The Liberty High School swim team cheers as 400-yard freestyle relay anchor Lauryn Hepp touches the wall and they see the winning time of 3 minutes, 37.43 seconds in the final event, giving them their record-setting, state 2A championship, 348-point total.

By Greg Farrar
The Liberty High School swim team cheers as 400-yard freestyle relay anchor Lauryn Hepp touches the wall and they see the winning time of 3 minutes, 37.43 seconds in the final event, giving them their record-setting, state 2A championship, 348-point total.

Briggs signed her name to papers Nov. 12 solidifying her commitment to swim for the University of San Diego.

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Skyline swimmers succeed

October 14, 2014

Photos by Greg Farrar Chase Raines, Skyline High School sophomore, swims the 100-yard backstroke to a winning time of 1 minute, 5.29 seconds during the Spartans’ Oct. 9 girls swim and dive meet against Interlake and Mount Si. Raines also prevailed in the 200-yard freestyle in a time of 2:07.34 seconds to help Skyline win the meet.

Photos by Greg Farrar
Chase Raines, Skyline High School sophomore, swims the 100-yard backstroke to a winning time of 1 minute, 5.29 seconds during the Spartans’ Oct. 9 girls swim and dive meet against Interlake and Mount Si. Raines also prevailed in the 200-yard freestyle in a time of 2:07.34 seconds to help Skyline win the meet.

Madison Cooley, Skyline High School junior, wins the 500-yard freestyle race in a time of 6 minutes, 33.59 seconds to help Skyline win the meet.

Madison Cooley, Skyline High School junior, wins the 500-yard freestyle race in a time of 6 minutes, 33.59 seconds to help Skyline win the meet.

Kathy Lin, Skyline High School junior, wins the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 58.15 second.

Kathy Lin, Skyline High School junior, wins the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 58.15 second.

Charis Kim, Skyline High School freshman, wins the 100-yard freestyle race in a time of 1 minute, 0.91 seconds.

Charis Kim, Skyline High School freshman, wins the 100-yard freestyle race in a time of 1 minute, 0.91 seconds.

Perfect in the pool

October 7, 2014

Liberty swim team defeats Issaquah in historic win

There is something special brewing in the waters of the Julius Boehm Pool, where the Liberty High School girls swim team practices and competes.

By Greg Farrar Abby Russell (right), Liberty High School freshman, is ahead of Issaquah sophomore Grace Morton on the first lap of the 100-yard butterfly, winning the race Oct. 2 in a time of 1 minute, 4.65 seconds.

By Greg Farrar
Abby Russell (right), Liberty High School freshman, is ahead of Issaquah sophomore Grace Morton on the first lap of the 100-yard butterfly, winning the race Oct. 2 in a time of 1 minute, 4.65 seconds.

The 2A school is turning heads across the league, defeating schools much larger, on the way to an undefeated meet record more than halfway through the season.

Liberty defeated 4A schools Newport and Skyline; and on Oct. 2, the Patriots made history, defeating Issaquah for the first time ever.

“We’re a 2A team this year and we beat 4A teams,” Liberty senior captain Mackenna Briggs said. “It’s something that we couldn’t have envisioned and now that we’re doing it, we’re all really, really proud.”

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City hosts swim meet

March 18, 2014

The city of Issaquah will host its first All-Comers Swim Meet March 21.

The meet is for all levels of swimmers ages 6 and older. All swimmers must be able to pass a deep-end swim test and be comfortable in deep water to participate.

The event is focused on fun and getting unofficial times for swim-team based events. All participants will receive ribbons; and the winner of each heat will receive a first-place medal.

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Spirit of an Eagle

February 11, 2014

Autistic swimmer inspires teammates

By Greg Farrar Trevor VanOrman, Issaquah High School sophomore, springs from the starting block for the second lap of his four-man team’s 200-yard freestyle relay race in January against Liberty High School at the Julius Boehm Pool.

By Greg Farrar
Trevor VanOrman, Issaquah High School sophomore, springs from the starting block for the second lap of his four-man team’s 200-yard freestyle relay race in January against Liberty High School at the Julius Boehm Pool.

Trevor VanOrman is arguably one of the most dedicated members of the Issaquah High School swim team.

He’s not on varsity, but that doesn’t stop him from watching hours of video every day. Nor does it or make him any less enthusiastic when he hits the pool.

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Duel meet two-fer

January 28, 2014

Keith and Ben Nussbaum don’t usually swim against each other in high school meets, but an exception was made Jan. 23, when the Issaquah High School seniors competed for the final time at the Julius Boehm Pool.

Even though Keith got the best of Ben in their sibling rivalry, winning two individual events and beating his brother head-to-head in the 500-yard freestyle, the duo helped Issaquah topple the Skyline, 116-69, in a Class 4A KingCo Conference dual meet.

By Greg Farrar Paul Jett (left), Skyline High School senior, is one stroke ahead of Issaquah High School senior Ben Nussbaum at the end of their 200-yard individual medley race Jan. 23 at the Julius Boehm Pool. Jett qualified for the KingCo championships in a time of 2 minutes, 2.07 seconds.

By Greg Farrar
Paul Jett (left), Skyline High School senior, is one stroke ahead of Issaquah High School senior Ben Nussbaum at the end of their 200-yard individual medley race Jan. 23 at the Julius Boehm Pool. Jett qualified for the KingCo championships in a time of 2 minutes, 2.07 seconds.

“We usually never race in the same events for high school, so it was really interesting to finally race him in my last home meet of my high school career,” Keith said. “And it felt good to beat him for once.”

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Issaquah dunks Liberty swimmers

January 14, 2014

Setting the lineups for swim meets can be a lot like a game of chess for coaches.

Coaches need to anticipate what the opponent will do with his or her lineup, in order to attempt to schedule the best race possible.

By Greg Farrar Keith Nussbaum, Issaquah High School senior, plies through the water Jan. 9 at the Julius Boehm Pool to win the 500-yard freestyle race in a time of 5 minutes, 10.65 seconds during the Eagles’ swim meet against Liberty.

By Greg Farrar
Keith Nussbaum, Issaquah High School senior, plies through the water Jan. 9 at the Julius Boehm Pool to win the 500-yard freestyle race in a time of 5 minutes, 10.65 seconds during the Eagles’ swim meet against Liberty.

Never is that more evident than with Issaquah High School coach Laura Halter and Liberty High School coach Kris Daughters, who are rivals on the pool deck, but best friends away from it.

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Freshmen phenoms

January 7, 2014

Liberty’s fall sports underclassmen take the stage

By Greg Farrar Liberty High School freshmen varsity athletes, swimmer Sydney Hartford, cross country twin sisters Brigette and Kelsey Takeuchi and football player Noah Pritchett, stand by a poster in the Liberty High School commons proclaiming ‘We Are One,’ the motto of Patriot athletes and their student body fans.

By Greg Farrar
Liberty High School freshmen varsity athletes, swimmer Sydney Hartford, cross country twin sisters Brigette and Kelsey Takeuchi and football player Noah Pritchett, stand by a poster in the Liberty High School commons proclaiming ‘We Are One,’ the motto of Patriot athletes and their student body fans.

Less than a year ago, Brigette and Kelsey Takeuchi, Sydney Hartford and Noah Pritchett roamed the halls at Maywood Middle School.

Fast forward to their first year at Liberty High School. Three of them have competed among the top athletes in the state, while the fourth has found a place on a varsity squad that rarely makes room for freshmen.

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Top sports stories of the year

December 31, 2013

Issaquah athletes take top state honors

It was another successful year for Issaquah community sports.

By Greg Farrar The Liberty High School girls soccer team exults with the state 3A championship trophy Nov. 23 after beating the Kamiakin Braves, 2-1, in Puyallup.

By Greg Farrar
The Liberty High School girls soccer team exults with the state 3A championship trophy Nov. 23 after beating the Kamiakin Braves, 2-1, in Puyallup.

Athletes at the three district high schools took home conference titles and state championships, while an Issaquah racing team made a splash on the water.

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Skyline edges Eastlake in KingCo swim showdown

December 17, 2013

For Skyline High School to earn a pair of victories in KingCo Conference action last week, the Spartans needed help from their seniors, but also from their freshmen and sophomores.

Skyline got first-place times from seniors Paul Jett and Nick D’Alo, and key contributions from underclassmen Nick Nava, Jacob Leahy and Ryan Kinnear to defeat Eastlake (94-91) and Redmond (103-77) in boys swimming and diving action Dec. 10 at Redmond Pool.

Cutline: Picture designed by:  Pre-Kindergarten Class of 2013-2014

By Greg Farrar
Jacob Leahy, Skyline High School sophomore, comes out of the water during a stroke in his 100-yard butterfly race on the way to a win during a meet Dec. 10 against Eastlake and Redmond.

Jett qualified for the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle at last season’s Class 4A state championships, but he showed last week that he’s skilled in multiple strokes.

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