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Juniata’s Houtz medals at State swim meet

By Kenny Varner
LEWISBURG – Today is the day that most local high school swimmers dream of.
Bucknell University’s Kinney Natatorium hosted this year’s PIAA State Swimming Championships.
Juniata’s Super sophomore swimmers, Sydney Houtz represented her school as she competed in the 100-yard Butterfly today in strong fashion earning a medal finishing in 8th place with a time of 58.52.
From last year’s seeding of 26th, the sophomore improved to a seventh place seeding.
“The fact that entered this event seeded 26th and this year I had the opportunity to be ranked seventh, I think that really shows how much my training has improved over the year,” Sydney Houtz said. “I’m not happy with how I did. I really have a lot of improvement yet to do. But I am very pleased with how far I’ve come since last year. I think right now I just need to work on the things I missed in this race and keep going from there.
Houtz blew away the competition just two weeks ago in the event at the District 6 Class AA. She also holds the District 6 record in the event.
Sydney has advanced through the morning preliminaries, swimming the 7th quick time in the 100 butterfly. She qualified for tonight’s A Final. She finished with a time of 57.64 which was down from her D6 time of 57.10.
Taking the top spot in her preliminaries was Clearfield’s senior swimmer Paige Mikesell with the top time of 55.28.
In the evening session, Houtz was focused and ready to go as they stepped to their markings.
Houtz will also compete in Day two activities as she will try to also medal in the 100-yard breaststroke where she is currently seeded fifth.
She also holds the District 6 Class AA record in that event as well.
“It was a good showing tonight. We wished her time would have been a little bit better tonight but that’s nerves and that’s this crowd. This is a great atmosphere, said Juniata Coach Amy Houtz. “It was great that she made an A-final. She has never made an A-final at this level.”
Sydney will be back at it early Saturday morning to try for a medal once again.

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