CV downs Eagles to claim section title
By: TODD RUTH Review Sports Editor firstname.lastname@example.org, Staff Writer
More often than not, overall depth wins out in swimming. And that certainly was the case Tuesday afternoon with the Section Two title on the line in the boys’ meet held at the Ephrata Recreation Center.
Visiting Conestoga Valley had its share of first-place finishes, but scored additional points with seconds and thirds which proved to be the difference in the end as the Buckskins captured the Section Two championship with a 102-68 victory.
"They were without a doubt the deeper team, and that is what wins duel meets," Cocalico Coach Matt Woods said of the Buckskins. "Events they won, they followed with seconds and thirds, events we won we didn’t and that’s the difference. My boys swam well, we had a lot of best times, they were just better tonight."
CV took six of the 11 events contested with Chad Alshouse and Conor Chastain leading the way with two wins each. Alshouse captured the 200 free (1:59.81) and 100 fly (58.74) while Chastain was a winner in the 50 free (23.93) and 100 free (53.01). The Buckskins also picked up two key relay wins which helped pave the way to the section clinching victory.
The Buckskins finished Section Two with a perfect 6-0 mark. Cocalico suffered its first loss in section play and stands at 4-1 with Thursday match vs. Ephrata to go.
The Eagles’ "big two" of Collin Haines and Sawyer Martin did all they could Tuesday, as each won a pair of individual events. Martin set a team mark in the 100 breast, finishing in a record time of 1:03.75. He also claimed the 500 free (4:47.21).
As for Haines, he captured the 200 I.M. (2:07.78) and 100 back (59.42), and was the anchor in Cocalico’s victorious 200 free relay (1:38.32), which also included Sean Worrall, Jake Keifer and Jake Ilgenfritz.
"(Collin and Sawyer) are swimming great," Woods said. "Collin’s times are looking better than last year. We have one more duel meet before leagues, so now we just need to figure out what he’s comfortable and confident with, and let him focus and attack those races. Sawyer is also swimming well. Tonight he swam a 4:47 in the 500, and last year at states when he was shaved and tapered he went 4:45… Scary fast. He’s just been so much fun to watch this year. I just can’t wait to see what both of them can do. I think both of them will be forces at leagues, districts and states."
While the Cocalico boys came up a bit short, the Lady Eagles took one step closer to the Section Two title with a 101-69 victory over the Buckskins.
Cocalico swept all 11 events as Olivia Evans, Layne Gable and Sam Marino each scored two wins apiece to lead the way. Olivia Evans claimed the 200 free (2:03.47) and 100 fly (1:01.15), Gable swam to victory in both the 50 free (27.17) and 500 free (5:44.95), and Marino earned wins in both the 100 back (1:04.42) and 100 free (56.93).
Other individual winners for the Lady Eagles included: Sidney Evans in the 200 I.M. (2:17.55); and Tara Rakewicz in the 100 breast (1:12.83).
Cocalico wrapped up the day with three relay wins to clinch at least a share of the section title while improving to 5-0 with that big one at defending champion Ephrata Thursday at 4 p.m.
Should Ephrata (4-1) prevail, and L-S (4-1) wins its final meet Thursday, there will be a three-way tie for first with Cocalico, Ephrata and the Pioneers.
Woods was asked his keys for the Thursday’s big meet.
"We need to win a lot of races," he said. "That’s a big strength we have between Layne, Sid, Liv, Tara, and Sam… we have been able to compete for firsts all year. (Ephrata’s Kylee) Parsons is tough, and she will be tough for our girls to beat in the 200, 100 or 500, whatever (Ephrata Coach Barry Erb) puts her in. And if she does win those events, we can’t let Ephrata rack up points by getting second, third or fourth. The 200 I.M. will be an important/close race with (Ephrata’s Katie) Zell against Sidney, and also the 100 breast between Zell and Tara. If we can win two relays, take at least one of those two events Zell is swimming, and win some close races, I think we’ll be in good shape. It should be a fun meet. It seems like both teams always swim their best in this one."
A year ago, Ephrata clinched its first-ever title with a win over Cocalico in the final dual meet of the season.
Speaking of Ephrata, the Lady Mounts tuned up for Thursday with a 94-76 victory at Manheim Central Tuesday night. Zell won both the 50 free (26.17) and 100 fly (1:04.38) to pace Ephrata.
Also claiming victory for the Lady Mounts were: Laura Pastrana in the 200 free (2:21.55); Maddie Walmer in the 100 free (1:00.22); and Parsons in the 100 breast (1:13.24). Ephrata added two relay wins (medley and 400 free) to put a cap on this one.
In boys’ action, Ephrata (1-4) captured its first team victory of the season with a 75-61 victory over the winless Barons (0-5).
Jon Husson and Jesse Eshelman paced the Mounts, winning a pair of individual events each while also taking part in two relay victories. Husson won both the 50 free (23.13) and 100 breast (1:07.91) while Eshelman staked claim to both the 200 free (2:13.63) and 500 free (6:00.03).
Matthias Hoffer earned the final individual win for the Mounts, claiming the 200 I.M. in a time of 2:30.68.
Both Ephrata and Cocalico were in action last Thursday afternoon.
At Lampeter-Strasburg, despite setting three L-S YMCA pool records, the Ephrata girls suffered their first section loss of the season in a tight 86-84 loss to the Pioneers.
Parsons set a pair of pool marks in both the 200 free (1:59.00) and 100 free (55.72) while Zell added a pool record in winning the 100 breast in a time of 1:12.87.
Zell added a victory in the 200 I.M. (2:21.01) while Kyra Valent (500 free, 5:57.41) and Brittany Reeder (100 back, 1:10.27) also won individual events. Ephrata added wins in both the 200 medley and 200 free relays.
On the boys’ side, L-S made it a clean sweep with a 103-52 win over the Mounts.
Husson was a double winner for the Mounts, capturing the 50 free (23.67) and 100 breast (1:07.53). The latter was a pool record.
Eshelman added the other Ephrata win on the day, claiming the 500 free in a time of 6:08.57.
Cocalico, meanwhile, earned a pair of wins at Manheim Central on Thursday.
On the boys’ side, Haines, Martin and Keifer all scored a pair of individual wins to key the 94-76 Eagle win. Haines won both the 500 free (5:18.00) and 100 breast (1:12.74), Martin captured the 200 I.M. (2:03.11) and 100 fly (54.98), and Keifer was a winner in the 50 free (25.24) and 100 free (57.30). Ilgenfritz added a victory in the 200 free (2:02.95).
In girls’ action, Marino notched a pair of victories to lead the Lady Eagles to a convincing 118-42 victory. Marino took home titles in the 200 free (2:05.04) and 100 free (57.97).
Other Cocalico individual winners included: Olivia Evans in the 500 free (5:29.38); Sidney Evans in the 100 back (1:03.60); and Rakewicz in the 100 breast (1:14.55). More SWIMMING, page B-5