The winter is upon us, which means that Middletown swimming is yet again putting together a strong season. The Blue Dragons moved to 4-2 on Friday after routing Hartford Public 100-70 at home. Middletown would have won the meet by nearly 100 points if they had not swum the final three events unofficially.
Head Coach Trevor Charles highlighted a number of individual swimmers for praise, most prominently Jack Winters. Winters won the 500-yard freestyle in a time of 5:53.49 and was second in the 200-yard freestyle while also swimming a leg for the second place 400-yard freestyle team.
“Jack had a very good day,” said Charles. “We were able to mix and match the kids today and try out kids in different events. Jack isn’t a new kid-he’s a senior-but it was good to see him do well.”
Charles also praised the second-place swims of Szymon Szarek in the 100-yard backstroke, Sajin Cyr in the 100-yard butterfly and Evan Pennington in the 500-yard freestyle.
MHS led the meet from its opening buzzer. The Blue Dragons raced out to a 42-17 advantage after the first four events and continued chugging alone from there. MHS would eventually take first place in ten of 12 events on the afternoon. Simon Arias, Ronnie Vaughn, Ethan Cooke, Tom McAlear and Michael Ciebieleski each won a race.
Star diver Dan Kinney, who began diving just last season, received a fantastic score of 8.5 from a judge in the meet. This is the second time a team diver has received an 8.5 in a week after Adam Gauthier received the mark.
That’s happened only three times in my 14 years here”, said MHS diving coach Matt Quinn to the Middletown Press. “Both have a world of potential.”
The Blue Dragons depth has served them well in wins over East Lyme, Rocky Hill and Hall. It also helped MHS to nearly knock off powerhouses Conard and Glastonbury. Charles believes it has and will continue to be his team’s biggest strength.
“Our work ethic and depth has been great,” said Charles. “Our depth never wavers and allows us to always be competitive.”
The Blue Dragons coach is happy but not completely satisfied with the team’s 4-2 start.
“I think we’re right where we expected to be going into the season,” said Charles. “That being said, we can always be better. We should have beaten Conard if not for a couple of mishaps, and there are issues like our attention to stroke detail that we need to improve.”
MHS will need every ounce of its depth in the coming weeks. The team’s schedule ramps up with a meet next Friday versus an outstanding Wethersfield squad before the Blue Dragons face its competition in the CCC South. Middletown is doing well so far, but the final few weeks of the season will prove whether the 2011-2012 team can live up to the accomplishments of past squads.
“The guys will have to swim out of their minds to beat Wethersfield,” said Charles. “But if we keep improving like we have been, we should win CCC South and finish around the 10th spot in Class L.”