Simpson swimmers strive for improvement under interim coach

Simpson swimmers strive for improvement under interim coach

by Ashley KatchStaff Writer

When passing through Cowles Fieldhouse this winter, don’t forget about the women working hard in the pool. The members of the swim team are down there practicing before and after class on Tuesdays and Thursdays and are up in the weight room Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings.

The swim team started practice on Oct. 15. According to the interim head coach, Amanda Rigg, practices have been going well and the team has been working very hard.

The Storm is currently 0-2 overall and in the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. They were beat by Coe and Luther at a double dual meet at Coe on Oct. 27.

Junior Melody Burgus recorded the highest individual Simpson finish for the day by getting third place in the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:57.53.

The hig:est placing relay team was the 200 freestyle squad of Burgus, senior Christen Sondag, junior Kirsten Towne, and junior Chelsy Croson. The team placed third in a time of 1:58:00.

Simpson has a very small team compared to the schools they compete against. There are only 10 girls out for the team this year. According to junior swimmer Kendra Frush, the other three swim teams in the conference have over 30 members on their teams.

Head Coach Mark Wagner is in his second season with the Storm. He is currently undergoing treatment for Multiple Myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cell.

Rigg will be running the program as the interim head coach. Rigg was a three-year letter-winner for the Storm and graduated in 2007. Since 2005, Rigg has served as an assistant coach for Indianola High School. She is a substitute teacher at the elementary level.

“I have very big shoes to fill in this coaching position,” Rigg said. “He [Wagner] is a very well known and very good coach.”

Frush feels that Rigg is doing a good job with the coaching position.

“Coach Rigg works really well with all of us,” Frush said. “Because she is a former Simpson swimmer, many of us have had the opportunity to have her as a teammate.”

According to Rigg, the team works very hard.

“They have done everything that I expect of them,” Rigg said. “I want the team to continue to work hard, make improvements, and hopefully break a few school records.”

Frush feels that the team has a lot of things that they can improve on.

“This year we want to compete well together,” Frush said. “We want to improve our times, have better top standings at the meets, and get more people in the final heats of the races at the meets.”

According to senior Jessica Paulsen, the team also wants to grow in size.

“We have always been one of the smaller teams,” Paulsen said. “In the future we would like to have bigger teams.”

Paulsen is excited for the home meet this weekend.

“We are gearing up for our second meet this Saturday,” Paulsen said. “We have been working hard and hope to see some of our times drop.”

The next meet for the Storm will be on Sat., Nov. 17, against Loras (1-0, 1-0) at home in the Cowles Fieldhouse Pool at 12 p.m. It is the team’s only home meet of the year.