PREP SWIMMING: Dallas falls at dual meet



DALLAS — Prior to a race, junior Jesse Genualdi isn't joking around with friends. In fact, Genualdi prefers to be alone.    "I have to get my mind right," Genualdi said. "If I don't get my mind right, generally I don't do well. I really focus on what I'm going to do in that race. Sometimes I separate myself, listening to music to get myself focused."    Genualdi seems to have little trouble getting focused this season. Genualdi took second in the 100 butterfly and third in the 500 freestyle during Dallas’ Mid-Willamette Conference swim meet against West Albany on Jan. 7. And though the team lost, the chance to compete against tougher competition was worthwhile.    "Albany is a good team," Genualdi said. "It gives us a little bit more competition rather than at the beginning of the year, when we had some lesser competition. It was nice to get out there and have fun with them."    Genualdi has established himself as one of the team's top performers, regardless of event. But his focus is on the 100 butterfly, where he hopes to crack the one-minute mark, and the 200 freestyle, where he looks to beat the two-minute mark. If he reaches those goals, coach Jeff Bemrose said it'll be because of the work he put in.    "Jesse is a great leader," Bemrose said. "This is his third year and the only sport that he does. He swims with the Blue Dolphins year round and here with us this time of the year. He can do all the strokes, and he's in shape because he swims year-round."    Genualdi is one of numerous bright spots for a Dallas team that includes Joey Orton, who took first in the 100 freestyle, and Kalon Schmidt. Genualdi's dedication is something that Bemrose hopes other swimmers aspire to.    "That's how swimming has become," Bemrose said. "To really be competitive and make it to state and be a top contender, you have to swim year-round. Jesse is one of those kids."    But it's not just the boys who are seeing success. Elizabeth Dressel set a school record in the 100 backstroke (1:08.48) and Jolie-Rae Ford approaching the record in the 50 freestyle after setting numerous school records already. Despite that success, Bem-rose isn't done searching for each swimmer's best event.    "I'm very pleased with them," Bemrose said. "… A lot of kids could swim all the events. But for a six-to-eight week period we place the kids in different events and then look at overall league standings, and we can compare times to other swimmers and get a feel for where we can put them at districts to have the best shot."



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