Bel Air and Fallston remain undefeated through two weeks of Harford County League swimming, but their margins of victory have been decidedly different.
Bel Air, winner of the past four county titles, dominated its meets, but Fallston has needed firsts from its girls and boys in the final 400-yard freestyle relays to get past C. Milton Wright, 213-211, and hold off Havre de Grace, 222-202.
The standings are: Fallston 5-0; Bel Air 4-0; Aberdeen 4-1; C. Milton Wright 3-1; Havre de Grace 4-2; John Carroll 2-2; Joppatowne 1-4; North Harford 1-4; Edgewood 0-4; Harford Tech 0-6.
In its opener, Bel Air had a 242-193 cushion on runner-up John Carroll and last Thursday the Bobcats beat Aberdeen, 231-172.
Sophomore Lauren Hafer highlighted the programs with successive school-record performances in the 200-yard individual medley, 2 minutes 17.68 seconds and 2:15.04. Junior Beth Yonych lowered the school's 100 backstroke mark to 1:03.48. Among the boys, junior Dan Machovec was a double-winner in both meets.
Against Fallston, an improved Havre de Grace team never trailed by more than 10 points until the concluding 400 relays. For the girls, Fallston was followed by Joppatowne and two Havre de Grace entries, and for the boys, Fallston went first and third against the only other entries, Havre de Grace, second and fourth. Only .34 separated the 2-3-4 finishers.
Thursday's meet scores were: Bel Air 231, Aberdeen 172, Edgewood 161 at Edgewood Middle School; Fallston 222, Havre de Grace 202, Joppatowne 143, Harford Tech 10 at Magnolia Middle School; and C. Milton Wright 233, John Carroll 207, North Harford 144 at North Harford Middle School.
Melinda and Cindy Cattell broke up Bel Air's first-place domination for the girls, as each won one event. Junior Luke Vesley claimed the school's other individual first in the 100 backstroke, and the team placed second in five of the six relays. In their opener, the Eagles got two wins apiece from the Cattells and Vesley, and the girls won seven of the eight individual events in beating Havre de Grace and North Harford,
Thursday, Mahovec (200 and 100 freestyle) was joined by Jeff DeHart (50 freestyle, 100 butterfly), one of two seniors on the boys team, as a double-winner. A week earlier, it had been Mahovec, senior Greg Hess and junior Bruce Tackett in this category.
In addition to her record swim, Hafer also won the 100 butterfly, and freshman Meredith Eyler was first in the 200 freestyle and 100 breaststroke.
C. Milton Wright
Senior Amy Landis, who missed last season with a shoulder injury, junior Laura Hershner and Steve Abeyta were double-winners in helping the Mustangs turn back John Carroll and North Harford. Wright broke away from John Carroll with a 1-2 finish by Abeyta and sophomore Jason Melani in the 100 butterfly, and later expanded a 16-point lead with a first (girls) and second (boys) in the 200 freestyle relay.
Senior Sherwin Sapasap won the 200 individual medley (2:10.12) and 100 breaststroke (1:06.02) for the second straight week, lowering his time in each with the year's fastest times. He was the county champion in the 100 breaststroke two years ago. Among the girls, Michelle Marsillo had two seconds and Dyan Elkins had a second and a third.
Included on the roster are several seniors who are out for the first time, including Allyson Cooper, Danielle Rice and Doug Coyner. Thursday, Cooper was fourth in the 100 backstroke and sixth in the 100 freestyle, and Coyner collected a second in the 100 freestyle and a fourth in the 100 backstroke.
Sophomores Katy Novotny and Paige McCarthy each won twice and contributed to the team's relay efforts. "We needed those relay points," said coach Mark Rhine, pointing to the Cougars getting three firsts and two seconds out of the six events.
Senior Justin Barnhill (second in the 200 freestyle and third in the 50 freestyle), the team's only returning swimmer, and freshman Jennifer Wolcott (sixth in the 50 freestyle) earned the team's points Thursday.
Havre de Grace
Juniors Jody Hochstein (two firsts) and Jason Hartsfield (first and second), plus two winning relays, powered the boys' half of the Warriors' charge against Fallston. Among the girls, there were seconds by Tara Rogers, Jennifer Lawson and Cheryl Yankolonis.
Overall, this marked the first year coach Aaron Thompson had to make cuts and his squad includes 34 girls, up from 20 a year ago. "Our success last year [9-5 in regular-season meets] has created more interest and you can see the excitement," he said.
Against C.M. Wright and North Harford, half of the girls' individual firsts went to John Carroll. Freshman Adrianne Kotula accounted for the 200 IM and 100 butterfly; senior Carrie Dannenfelser, 500 freestyle; and sophomore Sarah Dannenfelser, 100 breaststroke. The girls registered 146 of the team's 207 points. For the boys, senior Jason Glass won the 100 freestyle and 100 backstroke, and junior Liam Smith the 200 IM.
In the first meet, Glass (100 back) and Kotula (50 freestyle) were the only non-Bel Air individuals to win.
Junior Brad Wink and freshman Chip Reiter, the boys "team" against Fallston, Havre de Grace and Harford Tech, picked up a first (Wink in the 200 freestyle) and three seconds. A week earlier, Wink had a best of one second, and Zach Kehring, two thirds.
A school-record 1:16.49 in the 100 breaststroke by freshman Kelly Knight was one of three individual winners -- joining Kristen Jortland and Amie Dellone.
Jason Spacek won the 100 breaststroke and was second in the 200 individual medley, and the boys 200 freestyle relay team placed first against Wright and John Carroll.