By Doug Drowley | Special to The Seattle Times
Ramey is all smiles for Federal Way
Yes, that is a smile on Kenna Ramey’s face.
The Federal Way senior has a lot to smile about these days.
This weekend, she will make her fourth of five recruiting visits to the University of the Pacific in Stockton, Calif. A week later, she’ll finish up her tour at the University of New Mexico.
Ramey already has visited Idaho, San Diego State and San Jose State. She plans to make a choice on where to take her talents during the Nov. 13-20 early signing period.
As a defending individual state champion – she won the 50-yard freestyle in 23.44 seconds over Wenatchee’s Hannah Bruggman (23.68) and Newport’s Lorea Gwo (23.81) – Ramey has the challenge of repeating to grin over.
And as a Cambridge College Prep course participant, she’s got her intelligence to smile about, too.
But this smile has little to do with recruiting, and it’s not even the one Ramey sports once she finishes a race – including after winning the 50 free state title a year ago for the Eagles.
“When she’s swimming, she’s always smiling,” Federal Way coach Carla Boone said. “It’s something I noticed, I think, when she was a ninth grader. And she’s still doing it.”
That’s right, Ramey smiles through the water as she’s racing.
“I don’t really mean to smile,” Ramey said. “It just comes naturally to me. Like when I see people move to the end of the pool and they are cheering for me, I start laughing, it’s so hilarious.
“But also, my natural breaking face looks like I’m smiling, so people think I am smiling more than I am. Either that or I am laughing at myself.”
Take an incident not long ago during a meet for King Aquatic Club. Her coach decided to have Ramey swim the 400 intermediate medley. When Ramey turned to begin her legs of the breast stroke, she saw them.
“The whole team was at the end of the pool,” Ramey said. “I don’t breast stroke at all. They thought they were hilarious.”
Come serious race time, though, the smiles are reserved for Ramey’s breathing face, until the business is over. An Eagles captain this fall, Ramey scheduled her recruiting visits as much as she could around Federal Way meets. She will miss her first and only dual meet this week while in Stockton.
“Kenna works really hard,” Boone said. “And she also helps the kids that don’t swim as well. She doesn’t really stand out and think she’s all that. But she is all that.”
As a senior, Ramey embraces the present, but can’t wait for the future.
“I am making the most of it, because you only go through it once,” Ramey said of being a senior and recruiting. “But I’m also really excited to continue on with my same events (in college), more specifically my (butter) fly.”
Bratton continues to dominate Mukilteo Invite IM
Richland senior Lisa Bratton may want to reconsider graduating.
Bratton’s success at the Mukilteo Invite continued last Saturday, as she broke one of the two meet records to fall at the prestigious early-season meet. Bratton’s swim of 2:03.44 in the 200 IM lowered the mark of 2:04.97 that she herself set a year ago as a junior.
In fact, Bratton has broken the IM mark in three consecutive seasons. Back in 2011, as a sophomore, she swam the event in 2:05.87.
Bratton is the defending state 4A champion in the event, as well, having gone 2:01.53 at King County Aquatics Center last fall, the same venue in which the Mukilteo Invite was held on Saturday.
The other record to fall during the meet came from the Wenatchee High 200 free relay team. The quartet of senior Rachel Wilt, sophomore Audrey Parrish, and freshmen Isabelle Dressel and Jessica Wierzbicki lowered the mark set by Richland in 2012 from 1:41.67 to 1:41.35.
- Two athletes, Foss’ Emma Chard and Columbia River’s Monica Bottelberghe, have given oral commitments to swim for the Boise State Broncos next year. Bottelberghe and Chard were second and third, respectively, in the 100 free at the 3A state meet a year ago.
- Speaking of Chard, she posted a 52.17 time to win the 100 free at the Tacoma All-City meet last Friday. Chard went 52.14 in posting her third-place finish at state in 2012.