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North swimmers seek state titles, recognition
by Ericka Birdsong
ebirdsong@neighbornewspapers.com
January 02, 2013 04:13 PM | 1239 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
North Paulding sophomore swimmer Griffin Fricks practices at the Bentwater pool last week.
North Paulding sophomore swimmer Griffin Fricks practices at the Bentwater pool last week.
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The North Paulding swim team is working its way to a victory at the state meet once again with shared head coach, Kait Woods, leading the way.

Woods is the head swimming coach for all five high school swim teams in Paulding County School District this year.

This is the beginning of North’s second full swim season. They currently have 16 swimmers on the team — two seniors, six juniors, four sophomores and four freshmen.

For the initial season Woods had only five swimmers, two of whom still remain — Stephanie Peters and Taylor Wilks.

The other three original swimmers have graduated and now swim for University of Pittsburgh, University of Georgia and Georgia Tech on scholarships.

Woods said Peters and Wilks are the top female swimmers for the team. For the boys, Woods named Nick Helms and Jordan Neiswander as the top swimmers.

“[Helms] is just a freshman so I have him for three more years…All the ones I named either have state times or are very close,” said Woods.

This season, Woods said things are going well. The team recently traveled to Berry College to compete in the third annual Winter Berry 4x4 on Dec. 22. The boys team placed third, the girls placed fourth and the entire team placed fourth overall.

“We swam well, but because we’re small we can’t get all the points,” said Woods.

The boys are currently ranked 15th in the state while the girls’ are ranked eighth, but Woods still hopes for more support and recognition from the school and community.

Since the program began it has grown from five to 16 swimmers. Woods said she is excited about the team’s growth in numbers and honors.

This past season North went to the GHSA state championship and placed in six of the eight events they competed in. North even brought home a championship in the boys’ 100-meter freestyle event, bringing the school district its first ever state swimming title.

With so much success in such a short time, Woods still seeks more recognition and support from the school district and community.

“We’ve brought home a 4A state title, some of the other sports still haven’t done that, but we’re still not really known. It’s just an uphill battle,” said Woods.

The team uses private pools for practices. Woods said her wish is for use of an indoor pool of its own.
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