Jayettes continue streak of personal best times

Cesar J ToledoSports ReporterCtoledo@the perrychief.com
Jayettes continue streak of personal best times

On Thursday, September 17, the Jayettes hit the road to compete against six other schools at the Fort Dodge Invitational. Perry earned a total of 143 points, which landed them in sixth place. The top three finishers were Spencer High School, with 378 points; Boone High School, with 364 points; and Storm Lake, with 351 points. Host FT. Dodge High, came in fourth place with 333 points. Rounding fifth and seventh place were Sioux City Metro, with 241 points; and Algona High School, with 125.

For Perry, this event was a lot more than where the team finished. At every event so far the Jayettes has been rewriting its time sheets. Overall times have improved both in individual and team performances. Head coach Jean Dowd was ecstatic at the amazing leaps her girls have made in such a small amount of time.

“The combination of time drops, placing and points earned made this one of our overall more successful meets so far this season,” she said.

She was especially thrilled to see how the team’s new combination of sophomores Vivian Gonzalez, and Breanna Penenger, along with co-captains junior Haley Vaughn and senior Haileigh Kenyon, produced a season best time and earned the team 26 points including a trip to the award stand.

“It is a team effort and the exchanges are so critical. They had a pretty good drop in that,” coach Dowd said.

Individually, the girls continued to hit their goals as all seven Jayettes had new personal best times, which they’ve worked so hard on.

“On Thursday I dropped about two seconds from my last time,” Vaughn said.

Her personal best came in the 200 individual medley where she has dedicated a lot of her time. Vaughn posted a 2:31.23. That time earned her 6th place and a place on the award stand.

“I’ve been working really hard on my flip turns and stroke technique on that. Even the tiniest things cuts seconds off,” she said. “Nothing feels better than standing on the podium.”

Ackerman also saw her countless hours in the pool payoff as she achieved a personal best time of 1:20.24 in the 100-yard freestyle.

“Yes, during practice I swam a couple of hundreds and timed myself and got better at it,” she said.

The rest of the team saw personal best times in the 200-yard freestyle; 500-yard freestyle; and 100-yard backstroke and breaststroke. Co-captain Kenyon acknowledged how participating in this invitational prepared them for future races.

“It was a pretty hard meet, so that was really good for us because we had to go against some of the bigger schools in the state,” she said.

The Jayettes will be at Des Moines North on September 26, as the team competes in the Polar Bear Invitational. They will finally be home on September 29 to face off against Des Moines East.

Individual Personal Best Times:Gonzalez: 100 Backstroke 1:20.78Kenyon: 200 Freestyle 2:15.51Penenger: 200 Freestyle 2:21.13Penenger: 500 Freestyle 6:25.74Ridnour: 100 Breaststroke 1:34.73Ridnour: 50 Freestyle 31.95