Friday, February 16, 2001

Indian Hill swimmer overcomes malady

Carey strives for district titles this weekend

By Dave Schutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        You couldn't blame Betsy Carey is she never wanted to see another doctor. Plagued with daily headaches for nearly three years, the 16-year-old Indian Hill swimmer spent more time undergoing tests than in the swimming pool training for meets.

Betsy Carey won two events in the sectional meet last week.
(Craig Ruttle photo)
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        “I must have gone to 100 doctors trying to find out what was causing the headaches,” the sophomore said. “They still don't know, but as long as I take medicine, I don't get them anymore.”

        It wasn't until January, 2000 the headaches subsided and Carey began training daily with the Cincinnati Marlins to prepare for the high school state meet.

        Although Carey had only five weeks of preparation before the Division II sectional, she qualified to state in both the 50- and 100-meter freestyle. However, she failed to place in either event in Canton.

        “It was very depressing because the headaches would come on about noon,” Carey said. “If I went to swimming practice, they got worse. All I wanted to do was go home and sleep after school.”

        Carey continued to progress last summer and showed she had the potential to be a dominant swimmer when she placed high in several national meets with the Marlins.

        “Betsy is a team player and has a positive attitude,” Marlins first-year coach Tim Wolford said. “She has an outstanding work ethic and is team-oriented. She's always willing to help a teammate.”

        Last Saturday, Carey had an outstanding performance at the Division II sectional meet at St. Xavier's Keating Natatorium. She won the sectional championship in the 50 freestyle in a meet-record 24.42, then won the 100 freestyle in 53.71.

        Carey will go for district titles Saturday (12:15 p.m.) in the Division II district meet at Miami University.

        Because of her health problems that caused time out of classes, Carey's parents, Susan and William, have set stringent rules.

        “If I'm not done with my homework and in bed by 9 p.m., I'm not permitted to attend early morning practices with the Marlins,” Carey said. “I usually practice two mornings a week.”

        After school every day, Carey practices with the Marlins at St. Xavier High School for nearly four hours, arriving home about 7 p.m.

        “It doesn't bother me that Betsy sometimes misses the morning workouts,” Wolford said. “Now that she has been given the opportunity, she's works hard when she's at practices.”

        Wolford has no doubt Carey is capable of winning a state championship although Gates Mills Hawken is expected to dominate the Division II state meet.

        “Hawken specializes in the distance events,” Wolford said. “Betsy will go faster this week at the district in both races and drop more time at the state.”

        Although Kettering Alter's Kelly Jones recorded a slower time in the 50 freestyle at the Dayton sectional, the senior is expected to provide Carey with the strongest competition at Saturday's district meet and also at the state.

        “It's hard to tell how the 100 freestyle will stack up,” Wolford said. “A lot of the sprinters every year come from the small town schools.”

        The Division I girls district meet is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Miami University. The boys meet is at 6:30 p.m. today.


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