2017 Expanded Scoring

Week 4 Expanded Scoring

Below is a compellation of a series of messages sent to coaches and parent reps by Jonathan Alford.  Please contact Jonathan directly for questions:206-734-7450

Midlakes Week 4 Expanded-Scoring heat introduction

Coaches and Reps,

Thank you again for your efforts as we experiment with ways to create a better, more meaningful experience for the long term.

I realize everyone is busy and we need to continue to learn and improve communication, so while I’ve already identified opportunities to work on that for next year, having made some trade-offs considering other factors in this process, I hope everyone will be open to this test.

Here’s a quick overview for the “A” meet (or combined meet if you are doing so) next week, which we encourage clubs to do, though understand the smallest clubs may fit less. If you feel you cannot, feel free to give me a call – I’d appreciate your feedback, but also want to re-iterate that while anything new and different can seem a challenge, especially when busy, we’re trying to keep this simple and focused on what’s most important, the swimmers.

We’ll follow up with more detailed instructions on this by tomorrow since most of you will start your entries later this weekend or Monday.

Quick overview of our Week 4 “A” meet test

Given July 4th timing on Tuesday, clubs have had the option to continue to swim both separate “B” and “A” meets or combine them on Thursday. Since we knew several clubs would combine them, we felt it a good opportunity to test an expanded scoring-heat structure both for those combined meets and the normal “A” meets.

To clarify, we encourage the Thursday “A” meet to test 2 scoring heats for individual stroke events – Free, Back, Breast, and Fly only. This will not be a huge, long meet. We have done the math, and it will be the same length as any meet.

  • the normal, final, faster “Gold” (sample name only – you can call it whatever) scoring heat will remain the same
  • a “Silver” heat will add a heat to some events, but primarily just convert exhibition heats into swims that count
  • In smaller age/gender groups, you may not even have enough to fill two heats - that's okay, you could keep one heat, but that is the very problem this helps address over time

We know it is not perfect - the points are the same for each heat to keep it simple, but would differ normally to reward the faster swimmers a bit. There would be a time standard like a BDQ time, but more accessible for more kids, to give better segmentation and an improvement goal for kids to shoot for. You can still swim some exhibitions if you have too many kids.

We're just testing the concept, and it won't affect how the league views your record for any division-alignment purposes, to be clear.

But the intent is the same - focus on fun, improvement, achievement, and respect, while providing greater opportunity for more kids with a broader range of ability levels to contribute to their teams.

Remember, we will test 2 scoring divisions for individual stroke events – Free, Back, Breast, and Fly only, though based on fair feedback, if you feel crammed, you may choose to pass, or perhaps wait and and try the Week 5 “A” meet instead. If so, feel free to give me a call.

That said, if you are still planning on this for Thursday, great, and just follow the instructions below for TEAM MANAGER. If you have already begun your entries, you will need to make some minor adjustments given technology constraints, but in consulting with other leagues who structure meets similarly, the process on your end is straightforward.

We will follow up with the sample Meet Manager file and instructions soon as well.

To recap:

  • the normal, final, faster “Gold” scoring heat will remain the same
  • a “Silver” division may add a heat to some events, but primarily just convert exhibition heats

Key Set-up and Meet Entry instructions and points:

1. 2 scoring divisions for all individual stroke events only – Free, Back, Breast, Fly

1. “Gold” & “Silver” divisions

1. “Gold” will have 1 heat - max 3 entries per team

2. “Silver” will have 1 heat - max 3 entries per team

2. 6 places each division

3. Due to the way Meet Manager functions:

1. the BDQ standard is the “Gold” time standard

2. But you can enter non-BDQ kids into the Gold heat – instructions below

4. The “Gold” heat should be faster swimmers

5. The “Silver” heat should be whomever you want to have the opportunity

6. Exhibition entries are not NEEDED and should be used with discretion, but you may add some

7. Point scoring will be the same for each division, and scores will total as one meet

2. Meet entries – we’ll keep this as simple as Team Manager and Meet Manager allows

1. “Gold” and “Silver” won’t appear in Team Manager, so just follow the steps below

2. For “Gold” entries:

1. If you enter a swimmer in an event, BDQ swimmers will automatically be entered in “Gold”

2. Swimmers who are NOT BDQ can be entered USING THE BDQ STANDARD as their entry time (other leagues use this same step due to MM limitations)

1. Print out the BDQ time standard list for reference

2. The swimmer’s best time (or NT) will be listed in the “Best Time” column 

3. After you check the swimmer to enter the event, click on the cell in the “Custom Time” column and enter the appropriate BDQ time

4. The swimmer will be entered into the “Gold” heat, but it will not affect her best time

5. NOTE – You must do the same for IM “Gold” entries if swimmers do not have the BDQ time. There will be no “Silver” heat; this just ensures a kid will be scored correctly

2. For “Silver” entries

1. Just click the swimmer’s name to enter the event as normal

2. But just as with “B” meets, they may NOT be BDQ swimmers

3. For Exhibition entries, enter as normal

4. You may disregard the 120-swimmer limit for this meet, though we believe it’s a non-factor

2. Quick Comments:

1. Thank you for doing this - unfortunately, Team Manager does not allow you to simply select heats (as you do for exhibitions)

2. We may want to revisit BDQ times; they seem too fast, so part of the review of this test will help us figure out what to do

3. If your teams are large enough to fill all the available slots, fantastic

1. But, especially in older age groups, you may fall short

2. Keep in mind this very problem is a symptom of the old system, and while it won’t feel good now to leave spots empty, a goal of this is to help address that problem over time

Good luck, and feel free to email or call me with any questions! I will be very happy to walk you through a set of entries and/or explain more why we need to do things this way.

And please let me know if you will be doing this so we can ensure we are available to help you if needed.




Midlakes – Part IV – Week 4 MEET MANAGER and Heat/Lane assignment setup

Hi everyone,

Following our Part III note with meet entry instructions, here are the specifics and file attached for Meet Manager. If you’re choosing to do this, we’re glad you’re embracing the opportunity.

This looks like a lot on paper, but is not in reality, though I thank you for any extra effort in giving more kids opportunities and WILL BE HAPPY TO HELP YOU:

  • Your starter, announcer, officials, timers, and results-entry folks will do everything as normal
  • This meet will run the same length as normal
    • we’re primarily replacing some exhibition heats with “Silver” heats to give more kids a chance to contribute
  • Meet entries are normal for exhibition and “Silver” swimmers; only swimmers who don’t already have BDQ times must be entered using the BDQ time for “Gold” heats
  • You will need to ensure heats and lanes are assigned correctly. This requires a different process due to software  constraints, but is easy

Quick Reminder: “Gold” and “Silver” divisions for individual stroke events – Free, Back, Breast, Fly

  • “Gold” is 1 heat - max 3 entries per team
    • “Gold” should be your faster swimmers
    • the BDQ time is used as the “Gold” standard, but you may enter non-BDQ kids
  • “Silver” is 1 heat - max 3 entries per team
    • “Silver” may be whomever you like
  • 6 places each division
  • Exhibition entries may not be NEEDED, but you may add some
  • If your teams can fill all slots, fantastic
    • But, especially in older age groups, you may fall short right now, and that’s okay
    • The old system is a root cause of this problem, and our goal is to address that over time

Meet Manager – the Meet file template - SwimBkupFile

The file is set up to run the meet. If you’re in a 4-lane pool, just change the scorers from max 3 to 2 per team below.

  1. Download “MM File for 2017 Week 4 Scoring Test-04”
  2. Open Meet Manager and the File Menu
  3. Choose Restore
    1. Select Unzip, copy database to a selected folder, and open this new database
  4. In the Set-up Menu:
    1. Click Meet Set-up
      1. Change the Meet Name and Location as normal
      2. Set your Course as normal (SC Meters or Yards)
    2. Click Report Preferences
      1. Choose Printer Options and change to your printer

If you like, verify a few setup items (but do NOT change any, except 4-lane pools)

  1. In Meet Set-up
    1. On the right, under Meet Type
      1. Divisions – Time Standard should be selected
    2. On the right, under Meet Style
      1. Standard should be selected
  2. In Entry / Scoring Preferences
    1. In the Scoring / Awards tab
      1. Maximum scorers per team per event should be set to 3 for Individual and Relay
        1. 4-lane pools – change it from 3 to 2 per team
    2. In the Time Stds Meet tab
      1. Points awarded based on Seed Time should be selected
      2. BOTH boxes for Over achievers and Under achievers should be selected
  3. In Scoring Set-up >>> Standard
    1. The box should be normal (7,5,4,3,2,1 for individual and 14,10,8,6,4,2 for relay)
  4. In Division / Region Names >>> Divisions
    1. The box should show “Gold” and “Silver”

Before the Meet - Seed and Assign Correct Heats and Lanes

Import entries and use the process below for each event.

  • All scoring elements are already in the Meet file and will run correctly
  • MM software cannot do a dual meet heat/lane setup with divisions, which is why we are using time standards – as other leagues with similar structures do

Since Meet Manager will assign heats by time, you may need to segment Gold (BDQ) and Silver heats (you do NOT need to do anything for Exhibitions).

  • If each team entered 3 swimmers per Gold heat (6-lane pool), heats will segment correctly
  • If a team entered less than 3, MM will fill all 6 lanes, and a Silver swimmer(s) needs to be moved to the correct heat
  • You may combine heats if you have a total of 6 kids or less, just like you combine heats now

Heat/Lane assignment process (this seems a lot on paper, but is easy)

  1. Choose Seeding from the menu
    1. Choose Select All and Start Seeding
  2. Then print a “Psych Sheet”
    1. Choose Reports from the main menu bar
    2. Choose Psych Sheets (below left)
      1. Click Columns / Format tab
        1. Select “Double”
      2. Click Include in Psych Sheet tab
        1. Select “Time standards” and “Entry time”
      3. Click Filters/Sort Order tab
        1. Select “Slow to Fast” in Sort Order
  3. Use the Psych Sheet to view swimmers in order of Exhibition, “Silver” (no time standard), and “Gold” BDQ (below right)
    1. Also - make sure all IM swimmers are entered as BDQ

  1. Go back to the Seeding menu and select an event
    1. Click the Preview/Adjust menu
      1. Check if heats and lanes are segmented correctly (see screen example below left)
        1. Exhibitions will be Heat 1 automatically (if any) – no change needed
        2. Heat 2 (Heat 1 if no Exhibitions) should be “Silver” swimmers
          1. “Silver” swimmers are on the Psych Sheet with no time standard between Exhibition and BDQ (shown above)
        3. The final heat should be “Gold” swimmers
          1. BDQ standard
      2. If heats and lanes are correct, close and select the next event
      3. If you need another heat, select Add Heat (below left)
        1. Click and drag each swimmer to the correct heat and lane
        2. Lane assignments should be normal for home and away teams
        3. Click Save at top left
        4. Move on to the next event

  1. Go to the Reports menu
    1. Select Meet Program and Create Report
    2. Just ensure everything looks correct!


  • Print and post event results so kids can see them!!
  • If reasonably close (less than 75-100 pts), feel free to announce the score after IM, Freestyle, and Breaststroke
  • Award ribbons to more kids, which is a great thing!

I will be very happy to help you, so call with any questions! It seems a lot on paper, but truly is not.

Jonathan Alford