John Cooper Sports: Cross Country Finishes Season Strong, Dragon Swimming and Boys Basketball Open Winter Season

By: Lynn Boeding
| Published 11/08/2020


THE WOODLANDS, TX -- John Cooper Sports: Cross Country Finishes Season Strong, Dragon Swimming and Boys Basketball Open Winter Season.

Results from the week of November 2



11/7 at Houston Area Prep Cross Country Championship, Spring Creek Park

Boys 2nd •• Girls 3rd

The Cooper Boys and Girls teams take 2nd and 3rd in their final meet this past weekend at Spring Creek Park in Tomball.

With the SPC Championships cancelled all the way back in August, six teams from SPC’s South Zone got together to run a smaller version of the season finale. The boys teams finished in second place behind St. John’s and narrowly beat Awty by three points. The girls team finished in third place behind St John’s and Episcopal, edging out Kinkaid and Awty.

The girls team started off the day and ran really well with four runners in the Top 20 finishers. Katie Drake once again lead the team in her final meet of her career. “We are so proud of Katie and all that she has done for our program,” said Head Coach George Dohner. “She has been a wonderful and focused leader. We are going to miss her and all of our seniors.” Sophomores Megan Day and Chloe Smith ran their season best finishing in ninth and 13th. Junior Amber Navarra finished in 19th and set a personal best 5k time of 21:22. Rebecca Melin finished out the team scoring in 22nd.

The boys team put three in the Top 20 and all five in the Top 25 to take the second place trophy. Senior Zac Winton ran great race to finish in sixth place, leading all Cooper runners. Vishnu Swaminathan was able to finish in 8th place followed by Drew Wilkerson in 16th. Nathan Seamans and Grey Mendenhall battled it out to the line finishing in 22nd and 23rd respectively. “The boys team ran really well and we actually had all ten runners finish the race,” said Dohner. “We have called it the Spring Creek Curse, as the past three or four races at Spring Creek haven’t been that kind to our team. Several runners, even earlier this year, had injuries or something go wrong. Well, we definitely broke the curse this weekend!”

On behalf of the entire Cooper XC Staff, we want to wish our seven seniors the very best. Katie Drake, Sofia Gilroy, Maiana Hebral, Sam Liebbe, Will McDermott, Tori Osmond, and Zac Winton, have been wonderful leaders for our program and it has been our pleasure to coach each and every one one of them.

Girls Team – 3rd Place

Katie Drake – 7th (20:27)

Megan Day – 9th (20:48)

Chloe Smith – 13th (20:58)

Amber Navarra – 19th (21:22 PR)

Rebecca Melin – 22nd (21:50)

Ava Perugini – 23rd (21:54)

Boys Team – 2nd Place

Zac Winton – 6th (17:10)

Vishnu Swaminathan – 8th (17:18)

Drew Wilkerson – 16th (17:46)

Nathan Seamans – 22nd (18:05)

Grey Mendenhall – 23rd (18:05)

Kase Melodick – 26th (18:18)


Next up for Dragon Football:

Nov. 14 vs. St. John’s School, 1 p.m.



11/1 at HCYA Fall Invite at Conroe Aquatic Center

Coach Sara Bany: After a great first week back in the water a group of Cooper swimmers swam in the HCYA Fall Invite on November 1. The team was led by sophomore newcomer Malia Davis along with seniors Katia Guerrero and Nicholas Harris.

For the girls, Davis won back-to-back events with only about five minutes in between. First up was the 100-yard butterfly, which she won by over three seconds with a time of 1:06.38. Next was the 500-yard freestyle, which she won by over 30 seconds with a new personal best time of 5:34.95! Guerrero finished the day fourth in the 50-yard freestyle (29.06) and 8th in the 100 yard freestyle (1:08.23). Both participated in relays – the 200-yard medley relay team of Victoria Davila, Noelle Harris, Davis, and Ellie Wang finished fourth as did the 200-yard freestyle relay team of Katie Kovin, Harris, Wang and Guerrero.

On the boys’ side Harris finished third in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 26.73 and sixth in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:21.15, while freshman Austin Harris finished fifth in the 50-yard freestyle at his first-ever swim meet with a time of 30.45.

I like where the team is starting this year, for most it was the first meet they have swam since SPC in February and after only a week of practice I am encouraged with the times they swam and the enthusiasm for the season!

11/7 at HCYA November Invite at Conroe Aquatic Center

Coach Sara Bany: After six straight days of swimming, we returned to the Conroe Aquatic for another chance at competition. This week we saw several improvements and more personal best times!

The girls’ team was led by junior Caitlin Lanigan who won both of her events – the 200-yard freestyle with her best-ever “in season” time of 1:59.36 and the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 1:02.08. Freshmen Kyleigh Jeter and Laney Shea both recorded personal records (PR) in all of their events. Jeter finished fourth in the 200 IM with a new PR by over eight seconds of 2:40.90 and fourth in the 100 backstroke with a new PR of 1:12.47. Shea finished sixth in the 50 freestyle with a new PR of 28.76 and fourth in the 100 breaststroke with a new PR of 1:24.38. Big improvements from last week included Noelle Harris who dropped two seconds in her 50 freestyle and four seconds in her 100 freestyle, Ellie Wang who dropped almost two seconds in her 50 freestyle and three seconds in her 100 freestyle, Victoria Davila who dropped a second in her 50 freestyle and Katie Kovin who dropped three seconds in her 100 backstroke. It’s great to see the times going in the right direction even after a hard week of practice and no rest!

The boys were led this week by sophomore Victor Guerrero and junior Henry Shea. Guerrero and Shea finished first and second in the 100 butterfly in a neck-to-neck race that was decided by less than half a second, beating the rest of the swimmers by almost eight seconds! Guerrero also won the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:50.66 while Shea won the 100 backstroke with a time of 57.31. Senior Zac Winton returned to the pool this weekend placing fifth in the 50 freestyle and sixth in the 100 breaststroke after finishing his cross country season just hours before! Nicholas Harris finished his day fifth in the 100 breaststroke and seventh in the 100 freestyle. Freshmen Alexander Harris and Vik Shankar made their swimming debut this season with Harris finishing fifth in the 100 backstroke and 12th in the 50 freestyle while Shankar finished 13th in the 100 freestyle and 18th in the 50 freestyle. Rounding out or boys’ team was Austin Hynes, who after another week of practice, dropped a second in the 50 freestyle, placing 15th overall and clocking in a time of 29.92, which now qualifies him for SPC. He also swam the 100 freestyle for the first time and finished 10th in that race.

Overall the team is working hard this year and looks promising with our early season times. We will be back to racing this Friday – I’m excited to see the improvement after another week of practice!

Next up for Dragon Swimming:

Nov. 13 at CHSM Fall Invitational, Spring Creek Oaks Pool, 4 p.m.


Next up for Dragon Girls Soccer:

Nov. 9 vs. Frassati, 5 p.m.
Nov. 12 vs. Bay Area Christian, 5 p.m.


Next up for Dragon Boys Soccer:
Nov. 10 at St. Thomas High School, 7 p.m.
Nov. 13 vs. Concordia Lutheran, 7 p.m.


Next up for Dragon Girls Basketball:

Nov. 12 vs. Second Baptist, 5:30 p.m.
Nov. 13 vs. The Village School, 6 p.m.

The Village School is ranked the #1 Private School in the State


11/6 at Salt & Light • 73-60 L

Coach Matthew Wilson: We fought hard in our first game of the season! I’m proud of our guys. Though we came up short, there was plenty to build on. I’m very excited about our team’s journey this year.

Next up for Dragon Boys Basketball:

Nov. 9 vs. CHSM, 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 10 vs. HCYA, 7 p.m.
Nov. 12 at Lutheran South, 6:30 p.m.
Nov. 14 at Alpha Omega, 2 p.m.

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