Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

January 26, 2013

Starkey leads Aqua Pirates to Senior Night wins

Nick Gonnella
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg — Both Greensburg swimming teams defeated visiting Southwestern-Hanover Thursday night.

Greensburg honored senior Justin Starkey, who was swimming in his final home meet. Starkey won two events and also swam on winning relay teams.

“He swam great tonight,” said head coach Josh Hawkins. “It’s a great way to celebrate Senior Night.” Starkey won the 50-yard freestyle in 25.83 seconds, and the 100 free in 59.54, which was a personal best time.

The Lady Pirates defeated the Rebel girls 97-77 and the Pirate boys won 96-60. All six relay teams swept the Rebels.

According to Hawkins, SW-Hanover’s girls beat Greensburg 120-80 last season. He noted that the Lady Pirates were ready to take on the challenge Thursday instead of backing down.

“I told the girls, if we were to score on the heat sheet, SW-Hanover would have beaten us comfortably,” he said. “We talked about that. The girls really responded well. Instead of cowering away, the girls stepped up and really challenged.”

The winning girls 200-yard medley relay team of Morgan Stagge, Molly Oesterling, Abby Bausback and Bri Stagge, tallied a time of 2:08.10. The girls 200 free relay of Alli Duerstock, Kaleigh McGinn, Ashley Koontz and Molly Oesterling, clocked a winning time of 2:04.89. the 400 free relay of Bausback, Megan McDole and the Stagge sisters won with a time of 4:16.41.

In the boys’ relays, the 200 medley quartet of Nick Oesterling, Brady Niles, Andy Dashiell and Justin Starkey, clocked a winning 1:57.50. The 200 free relay of Dashiell, Spencer Kuehl, Drew Reiger and Starkey, won in 1:47.75. The boys concluded the night with the 400 free relay’s win of 4:03.12.

“That was fun,” said Hawkins of the boys’ relay wins. “I split them up a bit in hopes that they’d be able to come out with wins, and give some guys some opportunities to swim on winning relays.”

Hawkins credited Oesterling and Niles in particular for stand-out nights. Oesterling won the 100 back and 200 free, while Niles won the 100-yard breaststroke and the 200-yard individual medley.

“Nick typically swims great, but tonight he swam exceptionally well.”

Andy Dashiell won the 100 butterfly (1:18.17), while Jake Buening scored a personal best in the 100 backstroke.

Spencer Kuehl notched a personal-best in the 100 free (1:03.02).

For the girls, Abby Bausback (winning 100 butterfly, 1:10.71), Morgan Stagge (second in 100 free, 1:04.23), Ashley Koontz (4th in 500-yard free, 7:01.38) and Brianna Stagge (2 nd in 200 IM, 2:37.92), posted personal records.

Hawkins reflected on his experience coaching Starkey.

“He’s overcome a lot of adversity,” said Hawkins. “I think and I hope that swimming’s taught him a lot about life. He’s a good kid. He fits in with the kids. He gets along well with the kids. He does a good job of communicating. Over the last two months, I’ve seen him become a man. That’s been neat to see.”

Contact Nick Gonnella at (812) 663-3111, x7003.