December 11, 2013

10 swim teams to watch

GIRLS

1. Brunswick: The Dragons return a host of swimmers and a diver, Olivia Dumont, from a team that finished second in Class A by 14 points last winter. Senior Madeline Cowan and sophomores Lynsie Russell and Emma Blair all reached the championship finals. Among five new freshmen is Caitlin Tycz, who set a YMCA national record in the 50 butterfly and won her first high school 100 fly by 18 seconds.

2. Cape Elizabeth: The defending Class A state champs have dropped to Class B, where their depth threatens to overwhelm traditional powers Greely and Mt. Desert Island. Seniors Sydney Wight and Caroline Herriman and juniors Sadie Stiles, Sarah Loring and Sierra Bates are championship finalists. Diver Michaela Pinette (sixth in Class A) also returns.

3. Waynflete: John Stevens takes over as coach from Jim Harvey, who helped get the program started with an outstanding class due to graduate in the spring. Colby Harvey, the fastest butterflyer in state history, recently signed with Florida State. Fellow seniors Ellen Silk and Amelia Deady have won individual state titles. The loss of Walker Foehl will hurt, but the arrival of freshman Kiera MacWhinnie will help.

4. Camden Hills: The Windjammers return all their relay swimmers and lose only two consolation swimmers from the team that finished third in Class B last winter. Junior Catherine Abaldo and freshmen Emma Vannorsdall and Isabelle Gutheinz join a strong core that includes Emma Gutheinz, Moria Pieri, Ella Scott, Keeli Wood and the Carter sisters – Eliza, Anabel and Helen.

5. Cheverus: Deering and Greely may lay claim to a top-five spot by season’s end, but a huge influx of talented freshmen (16, on a team of 36 girls) tips the scales to Cheverus. Joining senior standout Sarah Nappo are newcomers Abby Longstaff, Carrie Hight, Lauren Girard and Danielle Chambers. Jess Soucy, Kate Burton, Hattie Train and diver Courtney Kane provide veteran leadership.

BOYS

1. Cheverus: The addition of three promising freshmen to the defending Class A champion helps offset significant graduation losses. Ben Tompkins (back), Gustav Andersson (breast) and Raymond Le (butterfly) bolster a lineup that includes state meet scorers Tim Jerome, Walker Church and John Devine (seniors), Sam Devine and Tony Penk (juniors) and sophomores Jacob Griffin, Kevin Kane, Michael O’Donovan and Thomas Nappo.

2. Greely: The four-time defending Class B champions return a veteran lineup headed by seniors Jonathan Dunnett, Jack Benoit, Griffin Fluet, Connor Russell and junior Ryan Plante. Junior Jordan Merrifield and sophomore Connor Rog also contributed consolation points at the state meet. Six freshmen should add to what is traditionally a deep and competitive team each February.

3. Deering: Former Gorham assistant Sarah Rubin takes over coaching duties from Angie Chessey for a talented Rams squad that placed third in Class A. Seniors Eric Delmonte, Alex Tucci and Lucas Adair lead a squad of 15 that includes sophomore Adam Roland and freshman Roman Anderson, who both contributed to early-season victories over Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough.

4. Cape Elizabeth: The Capers placed fourth in Class A before dropping to Class B this winter. Senior Jordan Petersen and junior Griffin Thoreck return from a championship 200 free relay. Sophomore Alex Mukai scored at the state meet and talented freshman Kyle Long should help overcome the loss of his brother, Evan, who now swims for Trinity College.

5. Windham: Seventh in Class A competition last winter, the Eagles return a solid bunch led by junior Joe Paluso. Senior Josh Blake, junior Lyle Webster and sophomore John Giberti all contributed at the state meet. Sam Shoberg, Josh Labrecque, Ryan Plummer, Mike Dubois, Jake Blake and Dan Kilgallon all have potential to do so this year.

– Glenn Jordan

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