The High School Season begins with 7 dual meets. Woodson competes against the other teams in the Patriot District which includes South County, Fairfax, Lake Braddock, West Springfield and Robinson, AC and West Potomac.
High School swim meets are very fast and quite different from either summer swimming or USA swimming. Don’t look for traditional meet sheets, a scoreboard or times to be posted at the end of the lanes at the dual meets. Our team will distribute to the Woodson spectators, a meet sheet that lists our swimmers by events; however, you won’t get a list from the other team. Swimmers can and are often changed by either team virtually up until the minute they swim.
All High School meets have 12 swimming events for boys and 12 for girls – 9 individual and 3 relays. For dual meets, each team enters four swimmers in each individual event and four relay teams in each relay event. Swimmers may enter a maximum of 4 events, no more than 2 of which can be individual events. Diving is one event; it is possible for an individual to dive & swim in the same meet. Swimmers are selected by the coach for each event or relay to maximize points for the team. Lanes are assigned with the fastest swimmers/relays in the inside lanes. The order of events is as follows for all high school meets – whether dual meet or championship meet:
200 Yard Medley Relay
200 Yard Freestyle
200 Yard Individual Medley
50 Yard Freestyle
10 minute break
100 Yard Butterfly
100 Yard Freestyle
500 Yard Freestyle
200 Yard Freestyle Relay
10 minute break (Districts/Regions/States)
100 Yard Backstroke
100 Yard Breaststroke
400 Yard Freestyle Relay
For dual meets (which have a maximum of four entries per team):
Relays are scored 10-5-3-0 with only 2 relays being allowed to score for each team in each relay event.
Individual events are scored 8-6-5-4-3-2-1-0.
Boys and Girls alternate in swimming each of the events with the boys starting the meet. There is typically a 10 minute break after the 50 yard freestyle. The dive meet is held in conjunction with the swim meet, either before the meet or during the meet depending on whether the pool facility has a separate diving well. Points from the dive team are added to the swim team points for a total score. Meets are won or lost based on total points.
It is extremely difficult to follow the score as the meet progresses because there are so many swimmers and all but 8th place score points. By the time the swimmers emerge from the locker rooms after the meet, the word should be getting around. There are no ribbons or other awards for dual meets.
On the weekend following the last dual meet of the season Woodson will compete in the District meet. The team’s dual meet win/loss record has no effect on Districts. Districts is a scored meet (there is a winning team for both the girls and the boys) and the coaches decide which swimmers will compete in which events to maximize points for the team, just as in the dual meets. Swimmers may compete in 2 individual events and 2 relays or 1 individual event and 3 relays. Districts is a championship meet with prelims and finals. Prelims are held on Friday night and Finals on Sat. night. The fastest 8 swimmers advance to the A final and the second fastest 8 swimmers are in the consolation final. Unless changes are made because of weather related changes, relays will only be swum during Finals. The top 8 swimmers/relays (the A final), plus any swimmers/relays that have achieved the Region qualifying time standard, advance to Regionals.
Regionals is the next level of championship competition. Swimmers/relays qualify for Regionals by being one of the top 8 finishers at Districts or by having swum a qualifying time at any point during the season (either in a dual meet or at Districts). Like Districts, there are prelims and finals at Regionals (there ARE relays in both prelims and finals) with the top 8 swimmers/relays advancing to the A final and the second fastest 8 swimmers/relays advancing to the consolation final. The top 5 in swimmers each A final and the top 3 relays in the A final automatically advance to States, along with any swimmers/relays that have met the State qualifying time standard. Bear in mind that RELAYS qualify for Regions, but some/each relay(s) at Regions could change from the season/Districts based on who is currently swimming the fastest as well as overall team strategy.
States is the next level of championship competition. Swimmers/relays qualify for States by being one of the top 5 individual finishers or one of the top 3 relays at Regionals or by having swum a qualifying time at any point during the season (either in a dual meet or in a championship meet). Like Districts and Regionals, there are prelims and finals at States. However, a very important difference is that prelims (morning) and Finals (evening) are on the same day.