Swimmers bounce back from first loss

Patrycja Zajac cuts through the water in the breaststroke during a loss to Hall on Oct. 4.



In hopes that they could take down a perennial powerhouse that handed them one of their only two losses of last year’s regular season, the Lady Knight swimming and diving team came up short against Hall again. But the Knights haven’t faltered from the season-long plan and are still forging full steam ahead.

Although the Knights didn’t win their meet against Hall with the high score, they still won the meet in other areas. The Knights look to get three wins every single meet, not just in terms of the score at the end of the meet, but in terms of the number of best times and doing well with the intangibles: attitude, effort, and sportsmanship.

Southington is currently 5-1, but according to Southington Coach Evan Tuttle, the team is also 17-1 from that perspective.

“Those are things that you can control,” the coach said. “We’re very fortunate to have success, in terms of the wins and loss columns with score. But we’re even more fortunate to be doing it the right way.”

With four meets left in the regular season, it’s also not a surprise to Tuttle where his girls are in the season right now.

“We knew we were going to have a very successful season with the returning swimmers we had, and the new folks to complement those veterans,” said Tuttle. “We knew that we would be right there in the mix with a good chance of posting school records and making a deep run at the state meet, not just in terms of individuals, but team totals as well.”

The Knights will be back in the pool this week when they travel to the Dennis Malone Aquatics Center to swim against Bristol Eastern on Tuesday, Oct. 10 and divisional Newington on Friday, Oct. 13.

Loss vs. Hall

OCT. 4—In their first divisional meet of the season, the Knights suffered their first loss of the season after falling, 93-77, to Hall at home on Wednesday. One of Southington’s only two losses during last year’s regular season came to the Warriors.

The Knights opened the meet with a two-point lead, 8-6, following a first-place finish in the 200 medley relay, but it didn’t take Hall long to respond. The Warriors quickly jumped out in front with a first-place finish in the 200 freestyle and first and second-place finishes in the 200 individual medley and never looked back, surrendering just two third-place finishes in the meet.

The Knights finished with 17 best times, which is one above their average of best times for a meet this season. After adding up the differences in times in every event, 0.8 seconds is what essentially separated Hall from Southington in the meet.

The following finished first in the meet: Meghan Hammarlund, Julie Duszak, Maddie Symecko, and Olivia Fournier in the 200 medley relay; Fournier in the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle; Meghan Hammarlund in the 100 backstroke; and Julie Duszak in the 100 breaststroke.

The following improved their Class LL qualifying times: Andie Nadeau in the 200 freestyle (2:05.18) and 500 freestyle (5:40.25), Duszak in the 50 freestyle (25.63), Fournier in the 100 freestyle (55.33), and Hammarlund in the 100 backstroke (1:04.56).

Nadeau improved her state time in the 500 freestyle for the third time this season.

Win at Farmington

OCT. 6—The Knights traveled to Miss Porter’s School a couple days later where they bounced back from Wednesday’s loss with their first divisional win of the season with a 95-81 victory over Farmington on Friday, posting 22 best times and first-place finishes in all 12 events.

The following finished first in the meet: Maddie Symecko, Julie Duszak, Meghan Hammarlund, and Olivia Fournier in the 200 medley relay; Fournier, Hammarlund, Andie Nadeau, and Duszak in the 200 freestyle relay; Duszak, Hammarlund, Nadeau, and Fournier in the 400 freestyle relay; Symecko in the 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke; Nadeau in the 200 freestyle; Duszak in the 50 freestyle; Liz Beaulieu in diving; Hammarlund in the 100 fly; Fournier in the 100 freestyle; Kara Zazzaro in the 500 freestyle; and Patrycja Zajac in the 100 breaststroke.

Beaulieu qualified for the Class LL meet with her mark in diving (174.95). Zajac improved her state-qualifying time in the 100 breaststroke (1:14.14).

For this week’s box scores, click here: (southingtonobserver.com/2017/10/10/weekly-scoreboard-for-the-oct-13-edition). To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.


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