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Issue 4: May 23, 2016

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Spirit Night - Monday, May 23

Reminder, Monday night from 5pm to 8pm we have a Spirit Night at Chick Fil A in Pflugerville located at 18617 Limestone Commercial Drive (512-251-4422) in the Stone Hill Shopping Center. We will receive a percentage of the receipts collected between 5pm and 8pm.

If you are dining in - please find the table with Blake Scott in the center of the dining hall and give him your receipt

If you are driving through - please hand the receipt back to the drive thru attendant specifying that the receipt will go to the "Wells Branch Spirit Night"

As a matter of rules, we are not allowed to have signage outside of the restaurant, nor ask other patrons of the restaurant for their receipts. Blake will be in the dining hall the entire event. If you have any questions, you can call Blake at 512-289-8849. Thanks! Blake

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Captain's Log

by Marcynda Verdicchio, President

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Red White & Blue meet. Besides being a lot of fun, the swimmers, coaches, and volunteers did a great job of keeping things running smoothly, and we are ready for our first dual meet this Saturday, at home against Steiner Ranch Blue.

Wells Branch and Steiner are part of the Northwest Swim Circuit (NWSC), which is our swim league consisting of 13 teams divided into 4 divisions. Steiner Blue is a strong team so we will have a fun challenge this Saturday. :-) You can read more about our swim league at

Carabiners are here: Check your family file folders for ribbons from this weekend's meet...and carabiners to help you keep them all in one place. Many swimmers place those ribbon-filled carabiners on their swim bags...or display them to display on bulletin boards.

When parking in the pool parking lot, please park in designated spots only. Do not park in front of the shed that is currently located in the parking lot.

Arrival time on Saturday, May 28 is 6:00am at our pool. More details are below.

Our season is off to a great start!

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Coach's Corner

by Gina Zayas, Head Coach

"When you have confidence, you can have a lot of fun. And when you have fun, you can do amazing things." -- Joe Namath

This past Saturday marked the beginning of what will be a fun and fast swim season. Thank you for participating and making the Red, White and Blue a great success. A very special thank you to all of our junior coaches who not only swam their own events but were on deck and in the water to help our youngest swimmers in their first meet. Thank you also to our parent volunteers for stepping in and helping make the morning flow smoothly. :)

One of the most essential reasons for swimmers to participate in the meets is to assess their progress from a coach perspective as well as a swimmer perspective. On both sides of the pool during a meet are trained stroke judges. It is their responsibility to watch the swimmers and determine the legality of the stroke. If a swimmer is doing a part of the stroke incorrectly the judges will fill out a DQ (disqualification) slip. These DQ slips are extremely helpful to the swimmer and coach to know what skills need work. The DQ slips will be discussed with the swimmer and then put in their family folders each week. I encourage you to ask any questions you may have about the DQ.

In looking ahead to next week’s meet against Steiner I’d like to remind the swimmers and parents of a few key things.

  • Swim shirts are okay to wear during practice; however, they are not allowed in competitive meets.
  • All swim caps worn during the meet must either have the Wells Branch logo or be a solid color.
  • It is extremely important to check in with your swimmer’s pit parent as soon as you arrive. Changes to relays will be determined by swimmers who are there at the designated arrival time.

Swimmers, now that you have had the opportunity to get a feel for racing and have a base time for your events, it is important to think about a couple goals you’d like to set for yourself this season. Here are a few different types of goals you can think about setting:

  • Time Improvement Goals- Improving your time each week in a certain event/events.
  • Technique Goals-Setting a legal time in an event you may have been DQ’d in.
  • New Event Goals-Swim an event you have never swum before.
  • Invitational Goal-Make the qualifying time for our Invitational meet at the end of the season.

We will discuss these in a little more detail at practice this week and please ask your coach if you have more questions. We are here to help you!

This week in practice we will be working on the following:

  1. Starts/Finishes
  2. Turns and Pull-outs
  3. Kicking Endurance
  4. IM (Individual Medley) race practice
  5. Sprinting

Let’s have a great practice week!

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WBA vs Steiner Blue - May 28

Be sure to enter by noon Monday - May 23 using our OME system.

This is a home meet for us and a great way to start our dual meet season. We need as many swimmers as possible to participate in the dual meets because each swimmer is important to the team. Swimmers must be able to swim unassisted and do the strokes legally to participate.

Relays are chosen by the coaches and we try to have as many swimmers as possible participate. Please recognize that if a swimmers signs up for a meet and then does not participate on Saturday, it may result in our having to scratch that relay team from the meet.

Please arrive on time. Late arrival could result in your swimmer being scratched from their relay.

Scratch: Once we close the meet online, email, or text to 512-659-1373 if you have to scratch. 

Key Information


Willow Bend Pool

Theme: Jungle Theme
Arrive: 6:00 AM WBA Warm-Ups: 6:15 - 6:45 AM
Meet Starts: 7:30 AM Visitor Warm-Ups: 6:50 - 7:20 AM
Concession Donations: Ages 9-10 & 13-14
(Fruit please)

Meet and Tent Set-up:  Friday, May 27th at 6:30pm. 

Clean Up

We ask everyone to clean up the pit and pool areas before they leave. We must return the pool area to its original condition. The more people who help, the sooner everyone can leave. Pit parents should not release swimmers until their area is restored.


Parking for our team will be along Sauls and Crissom next to the pool and soccer fields, and on the street on Long Vista. Please do NOT park along Bratton or in any of the parking lots for businesses you see along Bratton and Long Vista, as you will risk being towed. Please also do NOT block the construction entrances/ driveways to the school property or the apartment complex.  The constructions crews are working on Saturday morning. There will be overflow parking at the Rec Center on Shoreline Dr., but it is a small hike from there to the pool.

Please allow extra time to find a place to park and potentially walk a fair distance to the pool. You may also wish to drop swimmers off and then go find parking.

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Online Meet Entry - OME

For every swim meet on our schedule, EVERY family MUST login to our website and register your swimmer for the meet.

If your swimmer cannot participate in the meet, you should still login and complete the form.

Each family has a Swim-Topia account - your email plus a password you created. If you do not have this information, please email Marcynda Verdicchioand you will be sent a link that you can click on to set up your password.

Please login to

You should see the name(s) of your swimmer(s) and the events for their age group(s). Please tell us if your swimmer(s) will not attend the meet or if they will not be available to swim either the early or the late relays for that meet.

We need each registered swimmer to fill out this form for each meet.

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Concession Updates

Beginning Saturday, May 28, there will be two NEW ways to purchase the fabulous treats offered by our fabulous concessions team.

  1. You may purchase $10 food cards.  These are great for swimmers so they do not have to worry about cash.  Also, they are laminated so they will not get wet in the swim bags! 
  2. Concessions will begin accepting credit cards at the outside concessions stand.

Armada is excited to offer you and your swimmers new ways to enjoy the concession treats.

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Volunteer Spot

by Wesley Freeman, Volunteer Coordinator

Hello Parents!

The Red White and Blue meet this year had to be the smoothest meet for having volunteer positions filled. Everyone had the positions filled going into Friday with very few last minutes changes. 2016 is my second year as the Volunteer Coordinator and this meet exceeded last year’s fill and change rate. Great job!

Everyone stepped up and positions were filled going into Friday evening. Thanks to everyone who volunteered Saturday and for coming through as you did. There were more than a few instances where people pulled double shifts, moved from one job to another, and so on to keep the meet moving along. The Red, White, and Blue meet requires almost double the normal amount of volunteers, since there is no other team to share the volunteering load, and the entire team appreciates the above and beyond actions you took.

For the new parents and people stretching their old comfort zones, thank you for being good sports and volunteering for activities you weren’t really sure about. You filled some key roles and performed the tasks well.

A caution when signing up to volunteer. Some of the volunteer roles have numbers within their primary title. For example the “2” behind “Turn Judge” (Example: Stroke \ Turn Judge 2 - Stroke Judge - Stroke Judge - 1st Shift). The “2” is used to sequence jobs in the reporting mechanism. Please verify the number associated with the shift. In the above example, it is a 1st shift position. I will think about what I can do to improve the clarity here while still maintaining the reporting functionality.

As always, please feel free to send me an email with “Feedback” in the subject line. I do not promise an immediate solution, but I will note it and work to find a solution, if feasible. Continuous improvement!

Next week is the Steiner Ranch Blue meet here at the Willow Bend Pool. We will not need as many volunteers but participation is still critical. The activity level within the pool will be ramped up significantly. As a reminder, come early because parking will be a challenge.

A couple of last minute notes. 1) Please check in with me once you arrive at the pool if you are volunteering. This check-in lets me know you are at the pool and recognize you have a position. 2) If you are volunteering for a second shift position, please arrive 30 minutes early. Sometimes the meets run ahead of time and thus you will be in position for a smooth transition of volunteers. You can consult the heat sheets to determine the approximate time Event 46 (Beginning 2nd shift) will occur.

Thank you, and looking forward to next week's meet!

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Gold Medal Winners – RWB Meet

These WB Armada swimmers excelled by placing first in one, two, three, or four individual events at the Red, White, and Blue practice meet held May 21.  Congratulations.

Single Winners Double Winners Triple Winners Quadruple Winners
Sevana Allen Joy Chambers Ephriam Freeman Andrew Taffinder
Isabella Bradberry Chloe Finch Nash Lofland
Abigail Dowie Kayla Good Mya Marquez
Hannah Dowie Arwen Harris
Justin Good Caleb Jahnke
Abigail Janke Faith Larimore
William Lunsford Olivia Swain
Duke Mcallister Joshua Trunick
Phoenix Mielcarek
Shilah Norris
Daeni Scott
Mia Smits
Timorthy Taffinder
Reid Vaterlaus
Liam Ward
Bryce Wilson
Hallie Cooper

These WB Armada swimmers and their teammates excelled by placing first in the Free Relay at the Red, White, and Blue practice meet held May 21. Congratulations.

Free Relay Winners

Mixed 6&U: Teya Marques, Piper Pons, Reid Vaterlaus, Chloe Wu
Girls 7-8: Hannah Dowie, Hallie Cooper, Bella Halmon, Mya Marquez
Boys 7-8: Bryce Wilson, Eduardo Gomez-Horton, Quinn Richardson, Nash Lofland
Girls 9-10: Arwen Harris, Vinna Trunick, Mia Vargas, Joy Chambers
Boys 9-10: Timorhy Taffinder, Christopher Freeman, Liam Ward, William Lunsford
Girls 11-12: Abigail Jahnke, Rachel Pinkston, Daeni Scott, Faith Larimore
Boys 11-12: Jackson Wright, Joshua stabler, Justin Good, Ephraim Freeman
Girls 13-14: Serena Wadehra, Chloe Finch, Caitlin Pinkston, Olivia swain
Boys 13-14: Andrew Taffinder, Keegan Gavin, Vincent Pham, Austin Do
Girl 15-17: Isabella Bradberry, Victoria Trunick, Kayla Good, Miranda Wadehra
Boys 15-17: Mason Freeman, Caleb Jahnke, Gilbert Lehman, Joshua Trunick
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Swim Shop

WBA’s swim shop will be up and running during our home swim meets. Can’t wait until Saturday? Please email or see Marcynda during practices.

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​Attention Coaches and Junior Coaches!

Coaches and Junior Coaches, please check your file boxes and fill out the Favorite Things questionnaire. This information helps parents and swimmers figure out how best to show their appreciation for a job well done on Coach Appreciation Day. Please complete and return the forms to Soonee Wright's file as soon as possible.

Thank you!

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WBA Scholarships

Scholarship applications have been distributed and are due by Friday, June 3rd.

We also need volunteers to serve on the scholarship committee. The scholarship documents state that a Board member or parent of a swimmer in their age-out year may not serve on the committee, which means everyone else can! To serve, you will need to be available to meet in late June to make a decision and communicate to the Board prior to the awards ceremony.

Please contact Soonee Wright if you are interested in serving on the committee or have any other questions about the WBA scholarships.

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Swim-a-thon: Donations requested for the Raffle

Our annual Swim-a-thon will be held on Tuesday, June 14. This is our primary fundraiser for the year and funds raised help us keep our registration fees low and purchase needed equipment.

We are asking for donations of goods, services, or gift certificates that we can raffle. If you are able to assist in any way, please contact Soonee Wright or Brenda Pinkston. Raffle winners will be announced at our end of the year Swim Banquet on Thursday, July 7th.

We are a registered 501c3 non-profit organization and donations are tax deductible.

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June 4 Meet – Home vs Forest North

On June 4 we will have a meet against Forest North. Details will be in next week's newsletter, but you can sign your swimmers up and register for volunteer jobs once the Meet opens.We will send a message via email and Rained out.

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Swim Meet Apps: MeetMobile and MeetBop

Parents with Smart Phones! There are a couple of apps that you can utilize to keep track event times and event results. MeetBop and MeetMobile for the 2016 season.

MeetBop:A parent in the Northwest Swim Circuit developed this app to notify parents via text message an event or so in advance of when swimmers are swimming. It is free to download and since the Circuit has paid for it, it does not require a subscription this year. We highly recommend that you download this app if you volunteer in a position that cannot see the pool, and/or that may require wrap-up and transition to someone else prior to leaving for a moment to see your swimmer swim.  The results posted in MeetBop are official results.

MeetMobile: This app allows you to view heat sheets, heat and lane assignments, estimated start times and real time results both individual and team. You can also flag your “favorite swimmers”. Please note that some of the features requires a “subscription fee” to utilize. The requested fee is a MeetMobile requirement and the Wells Branch Armada swim team does not benefit from the fee in any way, nor can we waive it.  The results posted on MeetMobile are not official.

Meet results are always posted on the wall behind the lifeguard stand at every meet, and also on the website once the meet is completed.

If you have questions, please contact one of the board members.   

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Swim Meet Tips and Checklist

Here are a few important tips to make your swim meet experience successful:

Be on time. At the beginning of the meet the coaches will make changes to relay events if there are swimmers that are absent or missing. It is important that swimmers check-in with their pit parent to avoid being scratched from any relay event.
Bring nutritious snacks. The swim meets begin very early in the morning and last until noon or later. Please pack healthy snacks for your swimmers to eat such as fresh fruit, bagels, crackers, water, sports drinks, etc. We make an attempt to offer healthy items at the concession stand.
Pack appropriate supplies.Towels, sunscreen, goggles, etc - See checklist below...
Swimmers should stay in their pit areas The Pit Parents are responsible for watching the swimmers in the pit area and getting them to the ready bench when it is time for their event. If your child is going somewhere with you, please let the pit parents know.
MARK EVERYTHING! Please write your child's name on ALL belongings. At the meet, you will be dozens of identical t-shirts, caps, goggles - plus similar towels, flip flips, sunscreen. Don't forget to mark any electronic games - they get mixed up!


2 towels Water or sport's drinks
Blanket to sit on in pit area Nutritious snacks
Warm clothes for after warm-up in early a.m. Quiet activities to keep them occupied in the pit area between races
Swim cap Sunblock
Goggles Parents: Bring a chair, wear a hat, apply sunblock!
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