Southington girls swimming built off their impressive CCC divisional championship performance last Saturday in the Class LL qualifying meet at East Hartford High School.
To advance to the finals, swimmers and relays must place in the top 24 at the qualifying meet. Blue Knight swimmers advanced to the Class LL finals meet in 10 different events.
“We had a specific job to take care of on Saturday and that was to advance to the Class LL finals,” said coach Evan Tuttle. “We did exactly that. We got most of our athletes into Class LL finals, either individually or in relays.”
Southington athletes will be competing for medals in three events.
Meghan Hammarlund is in medal contention, reaching the fastest heat as the No. 8 seed in both the 100 butterfly (59.56) and the 100 backstroke (1:00.41). Hammerlund will also be competing for a medal in the 400 freestyle relay with teammates Gigi Perugini, Hammarlund, Emma Jekubovich and Andie Nadeau. The relay enters the finals as the eighth seed (3:45.36).
Although these are the only swimmers in medal contention, every swimmer will be competing for state open berths. The top 24 finishers in the class meets, regardless of their heats, will advance to the state open.
“While our goal on Saturday was to advance to finals on Tuesday, our goal Tuesday is to advance to opens on Sunday,” Tuttle said. “What that will take is exactly what we’ve done each meet this season, whether it be regular season or postseason, and that is drop time and post personal bests. Each of our athletes and relays have the opportunity to do so. It will not be easy, but when was anything worth achieving easy?”
The Knights advanced three relay teams to the Class LL finals, including the 400 free relay. The 200 medley relay team of Meghan Hammarlund, Jenna Famiglietti, Maddie Symecko, and Anny Moquete advanced to finals, seeded 14th overall with a time of 1:57.13.
The 200 freestyle relay team of Perugini, Sarah Meade, Moquete and Nadeau advanced to finals, seeded 11th overall with a time of 1:44.31.
In addition to Hammarlund, two other swimmers advanced to the finals in two individual events.
Nadeau advanced to finals in the 200 free in 1:58.98, seeded 18th overall, as well as in the 500 free with a time of 5:24.87, seeded 16th overall. Perugini advanced to finals in the 50 free in 25.29, seeded 11th overall, as well as the 100 free in 55.46, seeded 13th overall.
Symecko advanced to the finals in the 100 back with a time of 1:02.99, seeded 23rd overall. She also placed 25th in the individual medley with a time of 2:19.72, making her the first alternate.
Sarah Meade advanced to finals in the 50 free with a time of 25.93, seeded 24th overall. Finally, Jenna Famiglietti advanced to finals in the 100 breast with a time of 1:14.43, seeded 23rd overall.
Up next: Southington competed in the finals on Tuesday for a chance to compete at the state open this Sunday. The open will take place at Yale University in New Haven at 2 p.m.
Tuttle said finishing top-24 in the Class LL is already hard enough, but it will be even more of a challenge to stand out amongst all four classes.
You can find the results from Tuesday’s championship meet at www.content.ciacsports.com/tc/.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Spencer Dreher, email him at SDreher@SouthingtonObserver.com.