Wheeling Swim Teams Enjoying Success

BETHEL PARK, Pa. – The Cardinal Aquatics WHY YMCA Swim Team of Wheeling finished second at last month’s Junior Olympics event, which featured the tri-state’s top swimmers.

The Allegheny (Pa.) North Swim Club took top honors, bringing 35 swimmers to the event. Cardinal Aquatics’ second-place finish came with only 19 swimmers competing.

Wheeling’s women’s team, led by point leaders Olivia Moyer (age 10), Casadie DiBetta (9), Sarah Heilman (12), Mia Sunseri (11), Victoria White (13) and Zoe Scarpone (18), finished first overall with 491 points.

The men’s squad, led by Jarrett Bolinger (age 12), Michael DiBetta (14) and Matthew Marling (12), scored 90 points and finished 18th.

More than 40 teams and 2,000 swimmers competed in the three-day event.

Moyer racked up 115 points in the 10 and under division with five first-place finishes: the 100-yard backstroke, with a time of 1:11.98, the 100-yard freestyle (1:04.11), the 200-yard freestyle (2:20.58); the 50-yard freestyle (28.92) and the 50-yard backstroke (34.25). She finished third in the 50-yard fly and the 100-yard individual medley, while placing fourth in the 200 IM.

DiBetta scored 112 points in the 10 and under division with the following finishes: four firsts – 50-yard fly (32.12), 50-yard breaststroke (37.37), 100 IM (1:12.71) and 100 breaststroke (1:18.40). She finished second in the 200 IM and the 100 fly, third in the 100 freestyle and fifth in the 50 freestyle.

Heilman, in the 11-12 division, scored 95 points. She finished second in the 200 IM (2:23.90), third in the 50 backstroke (30.20), fourth in the 100 fly and 100 backstroke, fifth in the 100 IM, the 200 backstroke, the 500 freestyle and the 50 fly, and seventh in the 50 freestyle.

Sunseri, also in the 11-12 bracket, scored 78 points. She took first in the 100 fly (1:07.18) and the 200 breaststroke (2:41.67); second in the 400 IM (5:04.65); third in the 200 IM and the 50 breaststroke; and sixth in the 50 fly.

White, in the 13-14 division, scored 45 points. She finished second in the 200 breaststroke (2:38.44), third in the 100 breaststroke (1:14.33), and fifth in the 200-yard freestyle and the 100 fly.

Scarpone, in the 15 and older bracket, scored 38 points with fifth-place finishes in the 100-yard freestyle and 200-yard freestyle, and sixth place in the 100-yard fly and the 200 IM.

For the men, Bolinger scored 45 points with a fourth-place finish in the 50 breaststroke (35.04); a fifth in the 50 freestyle (26.61); a sixth in the 100 breaststroke; seventh in the 100 freestyle; and a ninth in the 50 backstroke.

Michael DiBetta scored 42 points with the following finishes: fifth in the 100 backstroke (1:01.36) and the 200 IM (2:13.94); seventh in the 500 freestyle (5:26); and eighth in the 100 freestyle, 50 freestyle and 200 freestyle.

Marling scored 31 points with a second in the 100 backstroke (1:08.78); a sixth in the 50 freestyle (27.25); and eighth in the 50 backstroke.

Cardinal Aquatics head coach Rick Riedel said his team has plenty of depth throughout the roster, something that was on display at the Junior Olympics.

“This was primarily our younger group of kids,” he said. “… It’s nice to see the younger group of swimmers coming to the forefront. We have depth with our team from the 8 and under group to high school, and that’s what helped us get to the point we are now.

“Swimming is a tough sport and recognition doesn’t come easily, but we came together as a team to compete against much larger areas of Pittsburgh, teams with more resources. Our depth and the interest from our swimmers and their parents is making us competitive against the larger markets.”