’79 was a big season for Barker swimmers

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 January 2021 at 9:31 am

Contributed Photo – Members of the 1979 Barker High swim team included, in front Chuck Wilson, Jim Bender, Ben Frombegen, Brian Earp, Chris Wright, Teresa Stoddard, Dan Harrison, Beth Sherman, Darrin Haight and Coach Frank Lock. In the second row, Tom Simms, Jim Flint, Michelle Hoffman, Larry Henry, Todd Wilson, Paula Stoddard, Frank Perkaski, Jeff Wilson and Brian Dill. In the third row,  David Henry, Amir Mehrdad, Jody Wright, Jay Hayden, Greg Schweitzer, Terry Loesch, Eric Sutch and Jay Fritzke. Missing from the photo is Tom Pavlovk.

Then a member of the Genesee Region League the Barker High swim team nonetheless made quiet an impact on their future Niagara-Orleans League foes during the 1979 season.

The Raiders first snapped Akron’s 53 meet winning streak and later handed N-O champion Roy-Hart its first loss of the season both by the very narrow margin of 87-85.

In the victory over Akron Jim Bender was a double winner in the 200 and 500 Freestyle events, Chuck Wilson took both the 200 Individual Medley and 100 Butterfly and Jay Fritzke won the 100 Free.

Barker then bested Roy-Hart for the first time in five years, a win capped off by a victory clinching effort in the  400 Free Relay by the quartet Bender, Wilson, Fritzke and Tom Simms.

Fritzke was also an individual event double winner in the 50 Free and 100 Free while Wilson took the 200 IM and Bender the 500 Free.

The Raiders set school records in 8 of 11 events that season.

Shortly thereafter Barker joined the N-O League for the 1980-81 season and the Raiders finished in a tie for second place with Albion at 7-3 behind undefeated (10-0) champion Akron.

The N-O went from a co-ed league to separate boys and girls teams starting with the 1986-87 season and the Barker girls claimed the title the first year going 10-0. The Barker boys gained  share of their first title during the 1987-88 season as they shared the crown with Akron at 9-1.