New high school swimming rule addresses consequences for ‘illegal attire’

As the high school swim season enters dual-meet competition, several new rules will govern the 2012-13 action. The rules were approved by the National Federation of State High School Associations Swimming and Diving Rules Committee.

Among the rules changes enacted is Rule 3-3-2 regarding illegal attire worn by an interscholastic competitor. A racing cap marked or labeled illegally under the rule change now has a consequence to the racer.

The previous rule did not specify a consequence.

In 2012-13, if the official identifies the violation prior to the start of the race, the racer will be notified and offered an opportunity to comply with the rule. If compliance delays the start of the race, then the racer is disqualified from the event and remains disqualified from all events until attired legally.

If the illegal attire becomes apparent after the official start of the race, the racer is disqualified at the completion of the race and the performance is nullified. The racer remains ineligible until attire complies with the rule.

In a change expected to eliminate unnecessary disqualifications in backstroke, Rule 8-2-11 allows a swimmer to lift the head to begin the rotation required when initiating the flip turn.

And, according to a change in breaststroke, the initiation of the arm stroke will be determined by officials when there is a “discernible separation of the hands by the breaststroker.”

Bangor boys have good start

Bangor High’s Phil Emery, who coached his first Ram squad during 1969-70, has this year’s Ram squad racing well in the early season. In the Rams’ recent win over Foxcroft Academy, all team members competed producing 45 best times.

Black Bears earn honors

Coach Susan Lizzotte’s University of Maine swimmers and divers earned America East honors for their performances in the Black Bears’ wins over Bates College of Lewiston.

Old Town’s Robbie Bickford was named AE Male Swimmer of the Week. Bickford won the 500 (4 minutes, 57 seconds) and the 1,000 (10:18).

Junior Erica Smrcina from Massachusetts earned the AE Female  Swimmer of the Week with her wins in the 200 butterfly (2:12.5) and the 200 breaststroke (2:33).

Maine divers Travis Wibby and Kara Capossela received AE Diver of the Week honors. For Capossela it was her third honor of the season. For South Portland’s Wibby, the award was his second.