Diving into a new season.
In May 2016, some Madison County parents dove into action so their young swimmers could have a team when London City Parks and Recreation was not going to continue with the city’s swim team.
The Madison County Marlins were formed.
Now in their second season, the Marlins opened at home last week against the Eastmoor Swordfish at London Municipal Pool. The Marlins are part of the Suburban East Swim League (SESL), which is made up of five teams in addition to the Marlins — Plain City Sharks, Foxboro Baracudas, Eastmoor Swordfish, Hunters Ridge Seahorses and New Albany Dolphins.
The Marlins roster of 42 swimmers is up from 32 of just a year ago. There are youngsters ages 5-18 from throughout Madison County who participate. The team is coached by Bart DeNijs and Erin Stollings.
They faced an Eastmoor squad with twice as many performers.
The Marlins who earned first-place finishes were Luke Thompson in the 50-meter backstroke and 50 freestyle. The team also had two winning relay teams. They included the girls 11-12 year old 200 Freestyle Relay (Cianna Mancino, Addie Keplinger, Savannah Comer and Mazi Tipton) and the boys 15-18 200 Freestyle Relay (Nick Berchtold, Zack Kaltenbach, Andrew Lambert-Chamberlain and Isaac Tipton).
Individual Marlin second-place finishers were Berchtold (100 freestyle), Comer (50 backstroke), Alyson Guitner (50 breaststroke), Kaltenbach (50 butterfly, 100 Individual Medley), Mancino (100 Individual Medley), Addie Thompson (25 backstroke) and Mazi Tipton (50 freestyle).
Second-place relay teams included the girls 15-18 200 Freestyle (Emily Bennett, Tori Bennett, Lauren Boyd and Lauren Davidson), boys 15-18 200 Medley (Berchtold, Kaltenbach, Lambert-Chamberlain and Isaac Tipton), girls 11-12 200 Freestyle (Emma VanHorn, Ellie Finney, Rylan Chaffin and Natalie Boyd) and boys 11-12 200 Freestyle (Brandon Trentman, Luke Thompson, Thomas Leach and Luke Thompson).
Third-place individual finishers were earned by Isaac Tipton (50 breaststroke), Emily Bennett (100 breaststroke), Rylan Chaffin (50 backstroke), Olivia Crum (50 backstroke), Natalie Boyd (50 freestyle), Charity Lane (100 freestyle), Jillian Oldham (50 breaststroke), Addie Thompson (25 freestyle), Mazi Tipton (50 breaststroke) and Molly Weese (50 breaststroke).
Placing third were the following pair of relay teams — girls 15-18 200 Medley (Emily Bennett, Tori Bennett and Lauren Boyd, Davidson) and girls 13-14 200 Freestyle (Alyssa Yearout, Kaitlin Adkins, Kayla Clinger and Alyson Guitner).
The Marlins’ 2017 Sponsors include: Platinum Sponsors — Madison County Vineyard Church; Gold Sponsors — Allstate Exteriors, Fraternal Order of Eagles No. 950 (Men), Madison Memorial Ladies Auxiliary American Legion Post Unit 105, Fraternal Order of Eagles No. 950, Madison Health, Mancino Law (The Mancino Family), Peters Photography, RE/MAX Leading Edge Realty, Suzy, Elizabeth, Emily and Tori Bennett, The Weese Family, Wilson Printing & Graphics; Silver Sponsors — The State Theatre, Mandy’s Day Care (The Comer Family), McDonald’s of London; and Bronze Sponsors — All 4 Paws.