Darien Blue Wave dominates opening swim meets
The Darien High swim and dive team dominated its opening meets, leaving longtime Hall of Fame coach Marj Trifone confident she has the makings of a strong competitor as conference powers loom on the horizon.
Darien followed its season-opening 99-61 win over Danbury with a decisive victories over St. Joseph’s (103-66) on Wednesday, Sept. 12, and Trumbull (99-82) on Monday, Sept. 17. While not conference powers, Trifone said that these contests allow her to evaluate her new, young talent and decide in what events each swimmer will compete.
“We have a young team and this allows us to evaluate the strengths of each swimmer,” said Trifone.
Against Trumbull, Darien jumped out to early 51-27 advantage with first-place finishes in the 200 free, 200 IM, 50 free and diving events. In the 200 free, Kendall Luecke was first at 2:04.03, followed closely by runner-up Lexi Punishill at 2:04.28. Kaitlyn Holmes won the 200 IM at 2:13.70, while Kelly Dolce won the 50 free at 25.53, just edging teammate Cassie Maroney (25.77), who placed second.
Julia Servas won the diving event, easily outdistancing her nearest competitor with a score of 234.25.
Dolce earned another first-place finish in the 100 free (55.23), and she was also part of two top- finishing relay teams. The team of Punishill, Jen Chen, Kelsey Vrooman and Dolce won the 200 free relay at 1:44.54, while the team of Maroney, Luecke, Punishill and Dolce won the 400 free relay at 3:50.07.
Lauren Picard won the 100 back at 1:02.97, and Grace Spatano placed first in the 500 free at 5:33.22, followed by teammate Caroline Haddad at 5:34.59 in second place.
Against St. Joseph, Darien started strong, claiming the top three places in the 200 medley relay, led by the team of Lauren Picard, Kaitlyn Holmes, Emily Fischer and Kelsey Vrooman, with a time of 1:54.18. The team of Olivia Golden, Jen Chen, Maggie Sedlak and Liv Peters were second at 2:01.31.
Overall, the Wave placed the top three swimmers in the first eight races before Darien had secured the overall victory and stopped scoring.
In the 200 free, Kendall Luecke was first (2:04.24), Lexi Punishill second (2:06.66) and Gracie Spataro third (2:07.99). In the 200 IM, Cassie Maroney placed first (2:19.68), Halle Spataro second (2:24.90) and Bridget Ritchie third (2:38.66). In the 50 free, Kelly Dolce placed first (25.52), Jen Chen second (26.86) and Kaitlyn Holmes third (26.68).
In the 100 fly, Emily Fischer finished first (1:02.52), with Maggie Sedlak second (1:06.03) and Halle Spataro third (1:07.79). In the 100 free, Lexi Punishill placed first (58.00), with Kelsey Vrooman second (59.63) and Rachel Stobble third (1:00.05). Kaitlyn Holmes placed first in the 500 free at 5:25.18, followed by Caroline Haddad (5:38.26) and Sloane Lattimer (5:57.03).
In the 200 free relay, Cassie Maroney, Kelsey Vrooman, Kelly Dolce and Lexi Punishill placed first at 1:44.08 with the team of Jen Chen, Kelsey Olvany, Kendall Luecke and Sloane Lattimer was second (1:48.38).
Cassie Maroney also placed first in the 100 back (1:06.66), while Jen Chen was first in the 100 breast (1:14.70).