Sometimes arranged marriages just dont work out.
So just in case, Hanford coach Kathy Piper bought her own trophy this time.
Piper has the Falcons boys swim team competing at the District 4/5 meet today and Saturday at Kelso High School, a situation forced by the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association due to numbers.
(Kelso) doesnt like us here, they dont want us here, said Piper, whose Falcons won the meet last year at Kelso but didnt get a trophy. They pulled a trophy out of their cabinet that we got to take a picture with. Then they put it back.
Which is why Piper bought a trophy just in case the Falcons take the team title again.
Its on the bus, she said. If we win, weve got a trophy. Im going to pull it out and take it in the pool.
All joking aside, Piper understands this is a tough situation for everyone.
I understand theyre upset were coming here and taking their (state) allocation, but were bringing an allocation too, she said.
And those allocations are the bottom line.
While there are some Falcons who have already qualified for next weeks state meet in Federal Way senior Will Wertz in the 200 free and 100 free, James Bennett in the 200 free, and the 400 free relay other Hanford swimmers are vying for one of the top two placings in their events to also qualify.
Sam Hart competed at state last year in diving.
Karl Kintner-Meyer and Andrew Zemmel have legitimate shots at qualifying in the 500 free.
Daniel Dohnalek in the 100 back, Kintner-Meyer in the 100 breast, Bennett in the 100 fly, and Joel Johnson in the 100 free also have good shots at state qualifying.
Potentially, I think Joel Johnson can win the 200 IM, said Piper. I think Joel might be a surprise.
Then there are the 200 medley and 200 free relays.
We expect to go for those relays by loading up, since weve already qualified for state in the 400 free, said Piper. Then well take as many kids as we can to state.
The hard part is that in todays preliminaries, the heats will be mixed up with swimmers from 3A and 4A schools.
Its going to be difficult to see who is racing, Piper said. We dont know this district very well. There are a couple of our kids who wont have to throttle it up in prelims. But for most of our kids, we told them Tomorrow, you gotta go. If theyre going to shave, do it tonight. We just dont have the knowledge of the kids here.
The good news is the finals on Saturday will be divided by classification.
Were expecting to get a few more through to state, said Piper. Well keep it pretty low key.
But theyll have their own trophy, just in case.