Welcome to the website of the Cape County Castaways!
The Cape County Castaways are a USA Swimming team from Cape Girardeau, MO & Jackson, MO.
Last Updated: Wednesday, July 20, 2016 @ 8:40 AM
07/03/16: Website Update
As always, updates on our team website are a bit slow in the summer with so many other things going on. We are off to another great start with our 2016 squad this year, definitely. We'll be getting our website caught up to speed soon with all the meet results (results up to and including our home meet on 07/02 are on the meet schedule page), and we will be sure to give appropriate attention to all swimmers who break through for a new time standard achievement or who set a new team record, etc., etc. We will also be updating the website with the 2016-2017 sponsors. And, we would really, really also like to update the "coaching staff" page with current pictures and bio info for all Castaways coaching staff members. Oh, and of course we need to get something posted with regard to 2016-2017 winter ("year-round") swimming. It's all coming soon. Thanks for your patience. :)
06/08/16: CCC Kicks Off 2016 SMSC Summer League Season With 2nd Place Team Finish @ Caruthersville
This past Saturday, the Castaways brought a partial-squad of 26 swimmers down to Caruthersville, MO to compete in the team's summer league season opener. The CCC swimmers expected a small, relatively quick meet especially given that the home team is currently in "rebuilding mode" due to a coaching-staff change. Upon arriving in the Bootheel, however, the small but mighty Castaways squad was greeted by a ferocious herd of 118 Kennett Killer Whales intent on avenging their season-opening loss to the Castaways (in Sikeston) exactly one year ago. Despite the CCC team's best efforts (including a lot of new best times for the experienced folks!), the Castaways were overwhelmed by sheer depth in the points column. Kennett tallied a remarkable 1,723.50 points, while the Castaways fell far behind to 2nd place with 537 points. "I thought we competed extraordinarily well given the overall length of the meet," Coach Steffan said. "I did not expect KST to bring so many to the first meet. I would love to have seven full relay teams of 8&U girls interested in competing in the season's very first swim meet."
On that note: although the inclusion of all the brand-new 6&Us may have dragged back the meet timeline a bit, Coach Steffan noted that if it were him with a truckload of motivated 6&Us he would want to include all of them, too. "I like 8&Us," he said. "We just need to rearrange the league's order of events for regular season meets so that we can include all the brand-new kiddos while not sacrificing the best interests of the older and/or more experienced swimmers and parents. I have some ideas that I intend to take to the league meeting in the fall. I think that it is very important that our team and league be inclusive for young swimmers. Remember, pretty much every sport is a year-round sport these days and it is important that there is a niche for very young swimmers in our awesome, awesome sport of swimming early on. After all, soccer teams have toddlers still in diapers out there on soccer fields smaller than my bedroom kicking a tennis ball into a 44 oz. fountain soda cup. That is what we are up against! When you combine that with drowning prevention/safety reasons you realize quickly why we must continue to place a high priority not just on our current older swimmers / experienced athletes but also on the future of our sport."
Most CCC swimmers will kick off their summer league season this coming Saturday with the team's home meet at Jackson City Pool (the 2016 Ainsworth Homes Invitational). That being said, CCC very much appreciates and applauds the experienced leaders who came down to C'ville for the official season-opener. Castaways Island also wants to make a special shout-out to our brand-new swimmers who, if anything, got a head-start on their summer by competing in their very first meet this past Saturday! These swimmers are: Carson Besher, Savannah Darby, Alex Etherton, Andrew Greene (see more below), Allyson Hayes, and Carter Shipman.
- Castaways' Results
- Full Meet Results
New Time Standard Achievements (See: National Motivational Times Charts):
- "A" Times: Savannah Spencer returned to the "A"-time club by blasting her first 11-12 "A" standard in the 50 Backstroke! "Savannah rocks our socks off. Whether she realizes it or not, Savannah is becoming increasingly visible as one of this team's leaders."
- "B" Times: Andrew Greene (9-10 Boys') swam a "B" time in his very first race. Coach Steffan reckons this is the first time this phenomenon has occurred in CCC history (a few others have been close).
New CCC Team Records (See: CCC Team Records):
- 11-12 Girls: Savannah Spencer's new "A" time in the 50 Backstroke likewise eclipsed her own prior team record!
05/03/16: Castaways Tune-Up For Summer @ Ward Insurance Splash Bash, Tackle LCM In Carbondale
It couldn't be a more exciting time on Castaways Island right now. Attendance at practices has steadily increased over the past couple weeks for our year-round swimmers, and the team is coming off an impressive home AAU meet as well as some strong performances in the long course pool over in Carbondale. All in all, as the Summer 2016 season approaches the Cape County Castaways look like a team that is poised to take the next step!
In mid-April, the Castaways hosted the Ward Insurance Splash Bash at the SEMO Aquatic Center with swimmers from the Scott City Dolphins as well as Bootheel Racers Swimming coming up to race the home squad. The Castaways always swim well in their home pool no matter what time of year, and this meet was no exception as the team posted a truckload of best times. Coach Steffan had this to say: "I was particularly impressed with our 8&U swimmers at this meet. Coach Hannah and Coach Emily have done a terrific job with our Blue Group swimmers this winter, and these kids will really hit their stride once we enter the summer league competition schedule. More importantly, as with all our swimmers, our first priority is to lay a foundation for long-term success and so we have a great deal to look forward to further down the road."
Two weeks later, several Castaways swimmers made the trip over to Carbondale, IL to compete in the annual Saluki International long course meet. Although the meet was a bit smaller this year, the "BB" time qualification requirement for events 200m or greater nudged the meet in a very fast, high-quality direction. "We have plenty of work to do," Coach Steffan noted. "Our roster for this meet should have been larger and so we need to evaluate whether this is because our swimmers and families don't yet see the value of long course swimming, or whether folks are simply settling on the month of May as an offseason, or something else yet." (Communication is king, and we coaches love learning more about our swimmers and how we can best coach each of them to be the best they can be given all the various pressures and factors weighing in on their lives. Each swimmer is an individual "puzzle" and we want to see all of them reach their ultimate potential!) However, Coach Steffan was extremely proud of those swimmers who were able to attend the meet - showing up is half the battle, after all - and the Castaways swimmers posted several strong performances over the weekend. "The swimmers who came and swam in Carbondale did very well in most cases, and we have been able to identify many things we need to work on so far as the "wet side" goes. Particularly, from top to bottom we are not finishing the last 1/4 of our races effectively. More emphasis on fast TMFs in practice, as well as more negative-split swimming, will definitely set us in the right direction."
Since the Carbondale long course meet, the Castaways' year-round swimmers have been back in the pool working hard to get ready for the summer! Look out! Our new incoming summer-league swimmers are going to have some excellent year-round Castaways teammates to look up to as leaders!
- Castaways' Results (Ward Consolidated Insurance Splash Bash)
- Full Meet Results (Ward Consolidated Insurance Splash Bash)
- Castaways' Results (Saluki International)
- Full Meet Results (Saluki International)
New Time Standard Achievements (See: National Motivational Times Charts):
- "A" Times: Emery Edwards earned her first "A" time in the 50y Freestyle! To say that Emery is "driven" would be an understatement. This is a swimmer whose actions indicate that she really does want to be 110% of the best that she can be, which presents unique opportunities and unique challenges for her coaches. Emery is a diamond in the rough: she is a very successful "age-group" swimmer here in the 2010s, and she will achieve far greater things as a "senior" swimmer in the 2020s.
- "B" Times: Marissa Pemberton earned her first "B" time in the 50y Freestyle! "Marissa is moving up quickly and she is already surprising people. And it doesn't look as if she plans on letting up," Coach Steffan noted.
New CCC Team Records (See: CCC Team Records (SCY) / CCC Team Records (LCM)):
- 9-10 Girls: Emery Edwards's first "A" time in the 50y Freestyle was also a new team record! Meanwhile, Chloe Merkley broke two CCC team records in her final meet as a 9-10 swimmer: firstly, she lowered her own 50y Breast record under the 40-sec. barrier. However, the coaching staff was even more impressed by Chloe's 200y Free later in the meet: proving that she is far more than "just" a breaststroker by blasting a new team record in a mid-distance freestyle event!
- 13-14 Boys: Hyrum Dickson - who, like Chloe, was swimming his last meet in his current age-group - smashed his own prior team record in the 100 Butterfly by posting a sub-1:00 effort.