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Granite Bay swim teams battle it out in pool

By: Danelle Wacker Special to the Press Tribune
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Two local “sea beasts” battled it out at a recent swim meet at Granite Bay High School. For the first time ever, the Granite Bay Gators and the Johnson Ranch Barracudas met in the pool. “I like the meets best” said Barracudas swimmer Emily Wagner. Five days a week, the swimmers have an extensive practice where they work on technique and try to improve their personal scores. During this particular meet, several swimmers achieved personal high scores including Johnson Ranch swimmers Dylan Munson, John Murphy, Brandon Reno, Richard Spencer, Marli Bannai, Nicolette Pinkney and Erika Bishop. Jerra Hagans and Alexis Martinez scored top honors for the Gator team as well. “I love the fact that you get out what you put in,” said John Sherman, Gators coach for the last four years. Katelynn Thompson has been swimming with the Gators for five years. “I love the competition and teamwork. You have to be persistent and focused,” Thompson said. Apart from being a competition, this particular meet was more of a social gathering. Since both teams are from the Granite Bay area, most of them are good friends with one another. “Most of them go to school together, so it’s a very spirited meet,” said Barracudas coach John Hooten. LaMills Garrett from the Barracudas team has been a part of the team for seven years. He said he enjoys pumping up the team and getting them excited for the meets. “I love engaging with the kids and helping them have fun” he said. Throughout the meet, both the Barracudas and the Gators put in a good fight each demonstrating their swimming skills. But, only one team could win. In the end, the Barracudas were the victors with a score of 1,754 compared to the Gators score of 1,245.