Girls swimmers fell short...
Suffield Girls 75 Deerfield 110
Suffield Boys 98 Deerfield 88
The Tigerswimmers and Tigerdivers hosted 2017 NE Division 1 girls' team runner up Deerfield (Suffield was one point behind them!) and DA's always fast boys' team for an important midseason waterfest. The dual meet competition between the two teams has practically become the stuff of legend in recent years, seen in the results of the last six previous contests:
Suff Girls DA Girls Suff Boys DA Boys
2017 96 90 106 80
2016 98 88 94 92
2015 102 84 92 93
2014 111 70 101 84
2013 113 73 93 93
2012 103 83 90 96
With the Orangemen defending a narrow advantage over the Green Wave at 3-2-1, and the SA girls riding an improbable six-year win streak, this year looked to be one where new bragging rights might emerge from the friendly rivalry. Deeper Deerfield contingents portended possible trouble for the Suffield hopefuls.
The opening relays gave view to some excellent sprinting, perhaps the result of a successful, 8-day training trip to Naples, Florida, early in the holiday break. Shaun Johnson, Sydney Winters, Samantha Hagberg, and Caitlin Lally raced to first in 1:52.73, winning by five seconds. Only one problem: they were disqualified for a jump. Suffield was down 12-2 in short order. Marco Secchiaroli, Joe Rusnock, Max Miranda, and Westley Bartlett took on a speedy DA quartet and lost by the narrowest of margins, .06. The boys were going to have to rally to overcome the early deficit. Fortunately, a strong Tiger B relay (Brett Smith, Leon Leung, Matt TItterton, Melvin Ku) were able to capture the all important third place in the race, earning two points for SA. In the 200 freestyle, Devina Bhalla, Jenna Polidoro, and Jenna Daly swam to second, fifth, and sixth places. They were challenged by DA stars Bailey Smith, Jordan Coan, and Bailyn Pritchett. In the boys' 200 free captain Cian Beaulieu, Brett Smith (swimming in his first meet of the season), and fast improving Mike Giugliano raced well. with Beaulieu cruising to easy victory The 200 IM pitted sophomore speedsters Hagberg and Lally against the Green Wave's 2017 NE D1 butterfly champion Nikki Pelletier. In a down to the wire finish, Hagberg could not quite close on Pelletier, but swam a fast 2:12.55 (to DA's 2:12.16). Suffield's own NE double event D1 champion, Miranda, then took to the blocks for a race against major D1 prospect Kevin Gu, a DA PG. He was joined in the event by co-captain Matt Titterton and Joe Rusnock. Miranda flew to a new pool record, eclipsing the fifteen year standard held by Alex Holdridge by two seconds, in 1:51.77. TItterton swam to a fast 2:01.41 for third, and Rusnock earned fifth place in a respectable 2:06.58. The sprint 50 free had Johnson, Amanda Kikonyogo, and Daisy Fauver taking on the trio of fine sprinters Deerfield fielded. Johnson won and Kikonyogo recorded a strong season best time while earning fifth place. Bartlett, Melvin Ku, and Walter Kress sprinted for the Orangemen, finishing in second, fourth, and sixth places. In the additional heats of the sprint free, Abby James, Casey Eskridge, Daisy Fauver, and James Muslu earned season or, in some cases, even lifetime bests, in the event.
In the diving event, both Suffield and Deerfield fielded strong contingents, many of whom placed well in the New England diving championships last year. On the girls' side, Carlin Molander '18 came out victorious with a score of 231.25, a lifetime best. Deerfield's Meyer and Bluestein secured the next two spots and Emma Krasemann '21 earned fourth place with a solid 189.45. Also diving well were Becca Bauer '19 (147.45) and Grace Reeves (141.75), both with near PRs. For the boys, Charlie Tilney-Volk '19 won with a huge score of 295.05, improving on his own school record mark by 12 points. Alec Wright '20, fighting illness and injury, came in second with a 261.15, and Kevin Kuzmeski '18 missed out on third place by a mere point with a score of 229.45.
The 100 butterfly saw Winters facing Pelletier in an exciting race, with Winters prevailing in a solid in season time of 56.70. Miranda repeated Winters' feat, winning the boy's race in an unrested best 50.41. Miranda was helped by Bartlett, who captured third place with a very quick 53.99, both a lifetime best and top 8 N.E. posting. Bhalla and Hagberg scored SA girls' team's only 1-2 finish of the day in the 100 free, both in speedy times (54.47, 55.40). Secchiaroli earned second place with a respectable 50.85 effort. In the 500 free, DA proved tough to beat, with Pritchett capturing the girls' race and Gu the boys' race, with relative ease. Titterton swam to a lifetime best (4:52.88) while outtouching Beaulieu on the finish (4:53.24). Giugliano secured the key fifth place point. The girls could not hold off fast charging DA in the 200 free relay despite a fast anchor leg from Johnson (23.89), but the boys (Rusnock, Ku, Bartlett, Beaulieu) cruised to victory. A key effort was made by the boys' "Bs," (Kress, Giugliano, Ryan Lunsford, Andrew Budge), who beat Deerfield to the wall by a mere .09. This figured large into the Tigermen's team win.
In the backstroke, Suffield couldn't quite overtake DA's Smith in the girls' race and Simon Lam in the boys' race. Johnson was outouched by Smith and SA's Brett Smith and Secchiaroli cruised to second a and third places, both in 56 second efforts. The breaststroke reversed the tide, as Winters, undefeated in individual races, and freshman Rusnock, captured top honors in the race. A breakthrough swim that bodes well for the Tigers in meets to come was Leon Leung's very convincing third place finish in the fine time of 1:06.85, effectively sealing the Suffield' team win.
Matt Titterton's strong leadoff helped SA seal the team victory, as teammates Secchiaroli, Beaulieu, and Miranda held on to the early lead.
Strong splits outside the "A" relays were registered by Jenna Daly, Lunsford, and Meier-Scherling.