Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Lebo's Orstein Smashes Record Senior Adds 15th Gold to Her Wpial Collection

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Lebo's Orstein Smashes Record Senior Adds 15th Gold to Her Wpial Collection

Article excerpt

Kaitlyn Orstein made history last Thursday at the WPIAL Class AAA swimming championships.

If not for a period of time about the equivalent of what it takes to mutter "Mt. Lebanon," the Blue Devils senior would have made history twice over.

Orstein set a WPIAL record in the 200-yard individual medley by a wide margin Thursday and came within seven one-hundredths of a second of doing the same Friday in the 100-yard breaststroke.

"I was a little surprised at the 200 IM," Mt. Lebanon coach Don Wagner said.

"I didn't even pay very close attention to it. I was looking at another kid. Then I look up and next thing I know, I see 2:01.

"We were real excited for her."

Orstein's time of 2:01.92 was a whopping 3.06 seconds faster than previous record-holder Amanda Smith's time from the 2001 meet. Smith was from Seneca Valley.

Twenty-four hours later, Orstein was at it again, taking the breaststroke in 1:03.05, good enough for a gold medal and nationally qualify, but just short of the WPIAL-record 1:02.98 set by Emily Carter of Bethel Park in 2000.

While acquiring the IM record wasn't all that much of a surprise, doing it by trimming that much time certainly was.

"I was totally shocked when I broke it by that much," Orstein said. "I knew I could definitely break the record because I went faster than that time at our Christmas meet.

"[But] I wasn't shaved and tapered, so I wasn't sure how much I could break it by. I was just totally shocked."

Orstein similarly was not prepared for a world-beating performance in the breaststroke. But a WPIAL-beating time is what she got, and almost a another record, to boot.

Yet the four-time WPIAL breaststroke champion fell just short. While .07 seconds to the layman might be difficult to comprehend, Orsteain said it is just as short a period of time as you'd think.

"It's like it's just a little harder push off the wall or slightly harder off the block. …

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