TAMPA — Ever since Newsome’s girls finished third among some of the best competition in the state at the FSPA meet in Orlando three weeks ago, the Wolves have been giving coach Chau Clark reason after reason to believe they can win a region title.
Newsome made yet another strong statement Thursday, cruising to a Class 3A, District 4 title with 565 points. Wharton finished second with 316, a sizable gap that displayed how far ahead of the competition the Wolves were at Bobby Hicks Pool.
“I’ve got a lot of depth on that team, a lot of swimmers that swim well. If they swim their best times next week, they’ll make it into finals in regionals,” Clark said. “Today, for a lot of swimmers, was a speed practice for the big meet.”
Led by sophomore Barbara Caraballo’s two first-place times, Newsome finished on top in five of the 11 girls races. Wharton picked up the other six, including two by senior Blair Kuethe. Every top finisher will move on to the region meet next weekend in Sarasota, along with any swimmer who posts the second-fastest time in the entire region.
On the boys side, Newsome also convincingly won the district with 512 points, beating out Bloomingdale (349) and Wharton (283). The Wolves boys didn’t post as many top times as the girls, recording only two first-place finishes, but their depth was on full display as they put forth a dominant performance.
“I expected that if the boys swam well, no mistakes made, that they should pull out a win,” Clark said. “The boys won the Western Conference, they won City Relays, they lost to Plant and lost to Jesuit.
“Jesuit and Plant aren’t here, even though there was some great competition and great swimmers on other teams.”