The Sisters High School swimming team plunged into the season with back-to-back meets last weekend.

Friday, December 7 at the Newport Quad meet, the Outlaws faced league rivals Newport and Sweet Home, along with 2A Kennedy High School. As the first competition of the season, the meet served as a conditioning check for the swimmers and gave Head Coach Bryn Singleton her first real look at how her veterans and newcomers look as a team.

On the girls' side, Sweet Home flexed its muscles, winning all but one event for the day, while Sisters produced a number of runner-up finishes.

The Outlaws 200-yard medley relay of Brooke Robillard, Cambrie Leaver, Lydia Bartlett, and Meredith Mandal clocked 2:11.02 for second place. The foursome of Robillard, Bartlett, Mandal, along with freshman Laura Clem also took second in the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 4:14.5.

Individual highlights included Brook Robillard in 50-yard freestyle (27.44) and the 100-yard breaststroke (1:17.08) and Meredith Mandal in the 100-yard butterfly (1:09.15).

In addition, Lydia Bartlett came within a blink of winning the 200-yard freestyle, as she was edged by .05 second to finish second in 2:02.25.

The boys' top performance came in the 200-yard freestyle relay where Gavin Todd, Sam Mayes, Austen Heuberger and George Bates placed third in a time of 1:52.16.

"Sweet Home is loaded again this year," said Singleton, "and it was good for the kids to see top-quality competition early in the season as we keep working on where we want to be when it counts."

Six teams converged at the Salem Salvation Army Kroc Swim Center for Saturday's meet, and Sisters, out of the shadow of Sweet Home, picked up a number of wins and other top places.

Other teams participating in the meet included Salem Academy, Stayton, Molalla, Kennedy, and Junction City.

The team of Clem, Robillard, Mandal and Bartlett started the meet with a win in the 200-yard medley relay 2:08.8, an improvement of three seconds from the day before. Mandal, Bartlett, Robillard and Ella Hayden captured the 200-yard freestyle later in the meet in 1:51.66.

Individuals on the top of the awards stand included Meredith Mandal in the 200-yard individual medley (2:28.63), Lydia Bartlett in the 500-yard freestyle (5:28.09), and Brooke Robillard in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:16.02, where she edged Bartlett by just over one second.

Salem Academy won the team title with 479 points, while Sisters took second with 326. Molalla was third with 300, followed by Stayton (271), Molalla (187) and Kennedy (54).

Highlights for the boys team included the 200-yard freestyle relay of Todd, Bates, Aaron Johnson, and Felix Leahy which picked up second place in a time of 1:59.2. As an individual, Sam Mayes took second in both the 100-yard freestyle (1:00.27) and the 50-yard freestyle (25.85)

Salem Academy and Molalla battled hammer and tongs for points with the Crusaders, prevailing 546 to 529. The Sisters boys placed third with 229 points, while Stayton (194) Junction City (152) and Kennedy (58) followed.

"I think we are off to a good start," said Singleton. "I am pleased with the kids' competitiveness and attitudes."

The Outlaws get to stay local this week for the Bend Invitational on Saturday, December 15.