CAPE ELIZABETH – Before the start of the South Southwesterns Swimming and Diving Championships, the Sanford High girls were introduced as the four-time defending champions.

As if Waynflete, which lost by a single point a year ago, needed any extra motivation.

“We were all like, ‘Oh, we can beat them!’” said Waynflete sophomore Colby Harvey. “Let’s ruin the streak!”

Five hours later, the streak, indeed, was over.

Harvey won two individual events, fellow sophomore Walker Foehl won another, and the Flyers held off Sanford by seven points to win their first Southwesterns title by a score of 174-167 Saturday at Donald Richards Pool.

Waynflete took control with Harvey’s victory in the final individual race, the 100-yard breast stroke. Seeded fourth, Harvey won by nearly two seconds over Linda Ziegler, a Sanford senior, meaning the Flyers needed only a third place in the closing 400 freestyle relay to clinch the title.

“I was nervous because I was in an outside lane, but I thought I could get close to first,” Harvey said. “I couldn’t see anyone ahead of me, but you never know. I still tried hard, hoping I was in first.”

In a spirited 400 free finale, Windham edged Sanford by half a second with a team of three seniors — Ashley Crocker, McKayla Eskilson and Elaine Miller — and a sophomore, Alex Farinella.

Waynflete was third, more than 12 seconds ahead of fourth-place Thornton Academy.

“The swims were great,” said Sanford Coach Jeremy Goulet. “Although I suppose we were the (favorite) based on our track record, (Waynflete was) the team to beat on paper. If you look at times over the year, our girls really did well tonight, so it’s great.”

Gorham was third with 146 points followed by Kennebunk and Massabesic (both with 143), Windham (138), Yarmouth (133½), Thornton Academy (98), Biddeford (70), Portland (56½), Noble (41), Bonny Eagle (38), Old Orchard Beach (10) and Hyde (6).

The Flyers led the entire meet, but never by enough to feel comfortable.

They opened with a half-second victory in the 200-yard medley relay with a trio of sophomores — Foehl in the backstroke, Harvey in the breast stroke, Amelia Deady in butterfly — anchored by senior freestyler Helen Bourdeaux.

At various times, Yarmouth, Kennebunk and Gorham pulled into second place, but the only serious contender was Sanford.

Sanford junior Karina Urquart was one of three individual double winners. She won decisively in the 200 free (2:04.52) and the 500 free (5:33.40) to help keep Sanford close. Still, with only three events remaining after the 200 free relay, Sanford was looking up at Gorham and Yarmouth, as well as Waynflete.

A pair of top-10 finishes in the backstroke and breast stroke pulled Sanford back into second place and within nine points of Waynflete entering the 400 free relay, but the Flyers held strong.

“We had a lot of girls that aren’t year-round swimmers who really contributed to the relays,” said Waynflete Coach Jim Harvey, pointing in particular to Bourdeaux, who didn’t swim last year. “This year having 17 girls, where we only had 11 last year, that depth really made a difference. Everyone contributed.”

In addition to Colby Harvey’s victories in the breast stroke (1:11.14) and 200 individual medley (2:15.19), the Flyers got a victory in the 50 free from Foehl (25.79) and scored in every event except diving.

Deady took second in the butterfly. Ellen Silk was fourth in the 100 free. Sophia Canning took fourth in the 500 free and fifth in the 200 free. Lucy Weaver was ninth in the 200 free.

In addition to Harvey and Urquart, Biddeford freshman Mariah Brady won two individual events — the backstroke in 1:01.61 and the 100 free in 55.85. Sidelined for three months with mononucleosis, Brady had not broken a minute this winter in the 100 free before Saturday.

“I could hear my coach screaming as loud as she could,” said Brady, who was named performer of the meet. “I just put my head down and swam as hard as I could.”

Other individual winners were Kennebunk junior Tori Leonard in diving (295.35 points) and Yarmouth sophomore Abby Belisle Haley in the 100 butterfly (1:02.59).

Staff Writer Glenn Jordan can be contacted at 791-6425 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: GlennJordanPPH


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