Bill Iezzi: Atlantic City High Swimmers

I just hung up the phone with Atlantic City girls' swim coach Billy Howarth, who was working on the beach with his life guards.

Howarth's immediate thoughts are with the safety of beach goers in this hot weather and calm ocean; however, he is also thinking about the Vikings' next swim season.

Atlantic City, which was No. 1 in The Inquirer's Super 6 last season, lost three swimmers and a diver to graduation. But among the 24 swimmers and divers returning are Colleen Callahan, last year's super freshman, and senior captains Rachel O'Brien and Leah Abbamondi.

Callahan won the state championship in the 200 individual medley in 2 minutes, 06.6 seconds and the 100 breaststroke in 1:03.7.

O'Brien is a sprint freestyler and Abbamondi a distance freestyler. They're joined by freestylers Melissa Toy and Ayana Cox.

Atlantic City won the Cape-Atlantgic League and the South Jersey Group 4 crowns.

"Individually, we're all looking to improve and then come together as a team for a shot [at a state crown] like last year, when we went 14-1," Howarth said. "We lost in the state semifinal to Plainsboro South." 

With that, the coach and captain of the life guards said he plans to stay in the shade as much as he can and swim a mile in the ocean at the end of the day.

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