Dover's Lindsay Brenneman has a certain technique that she uses when she swims the 500-yard freestyle.
"I go out and keep the pace I can to keep up the entire time," she said. "Then I sing to myself to keep the rhythm.
Although she said she switches songs in every distance race, during Friday's second day of the YAIAA swimming championships at Central York, Brenneman picked "Applause" by Lady Gaga.
The song worked as the sophomore won the YAIAA title with a time of 5 minutes, 17.07 seconds, which was 13 seconds better than her seed time and three seconds faster than her goal.
"That shocked me — a lot," Brenneman said. "My goal was 5:20, which is what I did here last year. Anything under that is amazing. It's a lifetime best by two seconds."
Brenneman added that working out with Eagles teammate Morgan Staub , who placed sixth in the same event, paid dividends.
"I knew I had to keep my eye on Justina (Thornley of Dallastown, who placed second), and keep my eye on my teammate Morgan," she said. "That helps me a lot because we can push each other."
TWO WINS FOR TROJANS >> When Carson Gross started the night with a win in the 100 backstroke, it spurred York Suburban teammate Megan Hunt when it came time for the 100 breaststroke.
But while Gross finished nearly a full second ahead of West York's Taylor Hoover with her time of 53.70, Hunt touched out Jessica Sun of Red Lion by a mere .04 after going 1:09.27.
"Oh my goodness it was so close. When it is that close, I don't know until I look up at the scoreboard," Hunt said. "When the team does well, it's motivation."
Gross said that she thought that Sun may have touched out her teammate but wasn't surprised that Hunt pulled it off.
"That's Megan's personality. I knew she would do that," Gross said.
Either way, capturing gold at the league meet is icing on the cake for the Suburban team, which will taper prior to the District 3 championships in three weeks.
"It's like an extra gift, knowing that we aren't rested and can do that feels good," Gross said.
WILDCATS RELAY GOLD >> Dallastown's Anna Hess couldn't help but notice how fast Red Lion's Courtney Schaefer went in her opening split of the final event, the 400 free relay. Schaefer blitzed to a 53.80, but as the second Wildcat entering the water, Hess knew what her job was.
"I analyze it right before I dive in the water," Hess said. "I knew West York would have a good relay, and I saw Courtney go out like that and knew I had to make up some ground."
Hess teamed with Justina Thornley, Jena Woods and Erica Wise brought home a gold medal in 3:39.46.
"Today was really special for this relay," Hess said. "The competition we get from the county is so good."
CHALK EARNED SECOND INDIVIDUAL GOLD >> New Oxford's Regan Chalk was the only swimmer to win two individual gold medals over the two-day event. The senior swam a 59.30 in the 100 backstroke, finishing .22 seconds faster than Hess.
It capped quite a weekend for the Colonials and Chalk, who scored two relay medals in addition to her 100 butterfly win Thursday.
YAIAA swimming championship
at Central York
100 free — 1. Carson Gross, YS, 53.70, 2. Taylor Hoover, WY, 3. Madie Devaney, YS, 4. Maddi Stoner, WY, 5. Anna Schmittle, YS, 6. Hailey Welchans, RL, 7. Amira Washington-Myers, RL, 8. Emma Balderson, Dt; 500 free — 1. Lindsay Brennaman, Do, 5:17.07, 2. Justina Thornley, Dt, 3. Summer McIntyre, CY, 4. Julia Randolph, Dt, 5. Rebekah Brown, Dt, 6. Morgan Staub, Do, 7. Mackenzie Sopko, CY, 8. Camryn Sopko, RL; 100 back — 1. Regan Chalk, NO, 59.30, 2. Anna Hess, Dt, 3. Carley Vaughn, CY, 4. Carson Gross, YS, 5. Maelyn Elder, WY, 6. Mikaelie Gonzalez, Dt, 7. Olivia Sopko, CY, 8. Claudia Keller, WY; 100 breast — 1. Megan Hunt, YS, 1:09.27, 2. Jessica Sun, RL, 3. Jena Woods, Dt, 4. Alison Sell, SW, 5. Nancy Marston, Dt, 6. Anne Mitzel, RL, 7. Allie Aspey, Do, 8. Lauren Cooksey, Dt; 400 free relay — 1. Dallastown, 3:39.46, 2. Red Lion, 3. West York, 4. Central York, 5. York Suburban, 6. Dallastown, 7. Gettysburg, 8. York Suburban.