High School Tradition spanning over 30 years few know about

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Photos by Katie Aichholz

Pictured above: students line up around the pool cheering on their classmates.

There is no doubt New Haven is full of tradtions.  There is one tradition at New Haven High School that you may only know about if you were a graduate. This it is not something you will read about in the newspaper or as a scheduled event on the school's calendar.  But it is one tradition every high school student looks forward to at the beginning of every school year.

Pictured right: Coach Steinhoff sporting "Top Gun" Maveraick sunglasses.

Every year high school students are given a half day off class in the afternoon to have the annual Swimming Intramurals event. Each class (Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors) competes for bragging rights.  There are 15 swimming races; 50 yd Free style, 50 yd Back stroke, 50 yd Breast stroke, 50 yd Side stroke, 25 yd Butterfly, Free style relay, Medley relay, and a Co-Ed Inner-tube relay.

The event is just as much fun for students as it is for teachers.  In fact, sometimes the teachers get more excited during the day than the students.

It is really an awesome site to see; students and teachers crowded along the sides of the pool, cheering on their fellow classmates, and enjoying a little break from class work.

Of course, every year students have tried to throw a teacher in the pool or concoct a plan to throw Mr. Strobel in.  As far as I know, this has yet to ever happen nor do I foresee it ever happening.

An event of this magnitude could not go without Coach Ray Steinhoff's log of all-time records for each event dating back to the 1977’s 4 x 50 Free Style Relay record held by that years freshmen class or Diane Sullentrup’s 1978 breast stroke record.

Pictured left: Bekah Stroble winning the tube race for the Senior class.

Let’s not forget Gary Menke’s 33-year-old record in the 50 yd Free Style with a time of 26.0.  Steinhoff said, “No one has ever come close to Gary’s record.”

Menke also held the Back Stroke from 1978 up until 2001 when Kyle Quick actually broke his record; however in 2008 Lukas Wander shattered Quick's record with a time of 30.77 seconds.

The Junior Class came out on top this year; leaving the three other classes in their dust with a-team total 65 points. The seniors came in second with 44 points followed by the freshmen, and finishing last was the sophomore class.

There were no new records set this year, however Kierstin Monzyk tied her own record set last year in the 50 yd. Back Stroke.

List of the current all-time records for each event. (All times are in seconds)

Girls Records
50 yd. Free Style – 1981 Richele Hansen 32.2

50 yd. Back Stroke – 2010 Kieerstin Monzyk 39.1

50 yd. Breast Stroke – 1978 Diane Sullentrup 43.0

50 yd. Side Stroke – 1999 Shelly Cook 45.3

25 yd Butterfly- 1996 – Sarah Pehle 16.9

4X50 Free Style Relay – 1977 freshmen 2:28.5

3X50 Medley Relay – 1998 freshmen 2:06.4

Boys Records
50 yd. Free Style – 1978 Gary Menke 26.0

50 yd. Back Stroke – 2008 Lukas Wander 30.75

50 yd. Breast Stroke – 1984 John Brown 35.45

50 yd. Side Stroke – 1994 Jeff Moeckle 40.725 yd

Butterfly – 1997 Tony Gumper 12.4

4X50 Free Style Relay -1982 seniors 2:00.0

3X50 Medley Relay 1978 juniors 1:49.0

Pictured below:  Seniors jump in to the pool