Kinsale Country Club assistant coach Aaron MacCaughey had a difficult time pinpointing a few top contributors to the Sea Dogs' fifth consecutive Country Club Swim League championship.
That might be understandable, considering 10 individuals won at least one event and Kinsale racked up 23 victories in all July 16 at Kenyon College.
Instead, MacCaughey, a longtime assistant to head coach Thom Green, said team culture was most responsible for the continued run of success.
"A lot of our senior swimmers, because they've stuck with it, have improved over the years. It's a depth some of the other teams don't have to work with," MacCaughey said. "That's not the case in all of our age groups, but the older kids do have it. There are a lot of people we can pull from.
"It's great to win, but as long as we're doing it as a team and everybody is on board and we're finding success not just in the trophy but in the process, it's something we can keep going."
Wins from Michael Gaier in the boys 11-12 50-yard backstroke (33.88 seconds), 50 butterfly (meet-record 31.24) and 50 freestyle (28.72), two wins each from Brooke Kleinschmidt and Morgan Lisch and nine victorious relays enabled Kinsale to score 2,903.5 points, holding off runner-up Wedgewood (2,737) and Jefferson (1,813) to win another Red Division championship.
Tartan Fields (1,349) won the White Division ahead of Medallion (1,159.5) and Columbus Country Club (347).
Kleinschmidt was first in the girls 15-18 50 back (33.88) and 50 breaststroke (37.99). Lisch won the girls 13-14 50 fly (34.75) and 50 free (31.19).
Kinsale had the top three finishers in both the girls 15-18 50 back and 50 free.
"We just have a strong program. A lot of us train a lot for this stuff," said Kinsale's Lila Leary, a recent Olentangy Liberty graduate and incoming freshman at Ohio State who finished first in the girls 15-18 50 fly (32.02) and second in the 50 free (29.5). Leary also helps coach many of the Sea Dogs' younger swimmers.
"We're all pretty well-rounded. We swim almost every event," Leary said. "Some people specialize; I'm better at butterfly, but we're all training all the strokes all the time."
Other individual winners were Morgan Blackford in the girls 6-and-under 25 back (31.06), Holly Gabriel in the girls 15-18 50 free (29.16), Aiden Gaier in the boys 13-14 50 free (27.06), Morgan Hofmeister in the girls 13-14 50 breast (40.52), Ella Lowrie in the girls 11-12 50 back (35.66) and Mason Miller in the boys 13-14 50 fly (29.38).
Kinsale got relay wins in the boys 13-14 200 free (1:58.68) and 200 medley (meet-record 2:02.27) and 15-18 200 free (1:50.55) and 200 medley (1:56.05), and the girls 11-12 200 medley (2:33.54), 13-14 200 free (2:18.8) and 200 medley (2:32.55) and 15-18 200 free (2:03.1) and 200 medley (2:22.8).
"There's an atmosphere of team building that helps sustain this program, so they start young and start learning and start enjoying themselves and growing. Then all of a sudden, we have a decade worth of experience and this is the kind of the meet where that really pays off," MacCaughey said. "That's how it unfolds. If you can build a sense of camaraderie and see growth and success during a seven-week season, it's something kids want to stick with."
Heath, Williams lead Rays to second
Two wins each for Landon Heath and Hudson Williams paced Wedgewood.
Heath won the boys 8-and-under 25 breast (30.19) and tied teammate Som Patel for first in the 7-8 25 free (19.61). Williams was first in the boys 13-14 50 back (29.86) and 50 breast (34.06).
The Rays' other individual winners were Wes Holman in the boys 6-and-under 25 back (34.71), Caden Meyer in the boys 9-10 25 back (19.83) and Alex Nash in the boys 15-18 50 fly (26.45).
First-place relays were the boys 8-and-under 100 medley (1:47.58), 11-12 200 free (2:25.75) and 200 medley (2:26.02) and the girls 9-10 100 medley (1:24.96).
Heath also was second in the 25 fly (22.18). Williams was runner-up in the 50 fly (29.5) and Campbell Williams was runner-up in both the boys 11-12 50 back (36.63) and 50 free (31.27).
Eismann wins three races for Jefferson
Kentucky recruit Jacob Eismann finished his Jefferson career in style, winning the boys 15-18 50 back (27.33), 50 breast (30.56) and 50 free (23.69).
Eismann was a four-time Division II state meet qualifier for Columbus Academy.
Jefferson also got wins from Reagan Sanders in the girls 7-8 25 back (22.96) and the boys 9-10 100 medley (1:21.74) and 200 free (2:46.58) relays. Sanders also was runner-up in the 25 fly (25.1).
Bowmans stand out for Aqua Scots
Bella Bowman won the girls 11-12 50 breast (37.01), 50 fly (32.62) and 50 free (29.55) and Emma Bowman was first in the girls 9-10 25 fly (15.51) and 50 free (32.22) to help Tartan Fields clinch the White championship.
By virtue of their title, the Scots will return to the Red Division next year. They dropped to the White after finishing third in the Red in last year's league meet.
Joe Hayes won the boys 9-10 25 breast (20.44), 25 fly (16.99) and 50 free (34.66) and Abby Radtke took the girls 9-10 25 back (18.85) and 25 breast (21.38) titles.
Liam Bisesi was first in the boys 6-and-under 25 free (26.43) and the boys 8-and-under 100 free relay (1:26.02), girls 9-10 200 free relay (2:30.01) and girls 11-12 200 free relay (2:13.28) also won.
Stout's victories lead Medallion
Parker Stout's victories in the boys 7-8 25 back (22.47) and 25 fly (20.5) led Medallion, which had six swimmers win at least one event each.
Payton Bradford was first in the girls 6-and-under 25 free (26.49), Luke DeFrancisco was boys 11-12 50 breast champion (41.38), Mackenzie Frizzell won the girls 13-14 50 back (36.57), Lucy Gee won the girls 8-and-under 25 breast (27.01) and Jane LeMasters was first in the girls 7-8 25 free (19.1).
Moneme paces Barracudas
Sloane Moneme won the girls 7-8 25 fly (24.97) and was third in the 25 free (20.74) to lead Columbus Country Club, which also got first-place finishes from its girls 8-and-under 100 free (1:30.04) and 100 medley (1:46.55) relays.