Nauset Boys, Girls Swimmers And Divers Enjoy Return To Postseason

By: Brad Joyal

Topics: School Sports , Swimming

Members of Nauset’s boys and girls swimming and diving teams will compete in the Division 2 state championships this weekend at Boston University. BRAD JOYAL FILE PHOTO

The energy surrounding the pool is a lot more exciting and the results are a lot more meaningful. That is the reality of swimming and diving during the postseason.

Members of the Nauset boys and girls swimming and diving teams finally had the opportunity to experience the thrill of postseason competition this winter after the state opted not to have league, sectional and state championships last year due to COVID-19.

“It’s amazing,” Nauset boys and girls coach Jennifer Stevens answered when she was asked what it meant to compete in the Cape and Islands League and the South sectional championships. “I think it was huge for the kids to have a big end to the season after they were so hopeful for it last year and we didn’t have it. I think it’s made a huge difference in having times to work hard for. It’s been amazing.”

Nauset’s boys team posted a perfect 6-0 mark during dual meets during the regular season, while the girls went 5-1, with their lone defeat coming in a 111-59 loss to Nantucket on Jan. 13.

Both Warriors teams began the postseason with the league championship meet Feb. 5 and 6 at Sandwich High School. Nauset’s boys recorded 254 team points to finish in third place behind Martha’s Vineyard (301) and Nantucket (266). The Nauset girls claimed runner-up honors after finishing with 323 points, second to only Nantucket’s 454.5.

The Warriors also finished behind the Whalers in the combined team score rankings, which saw Nantucket finish with 666.5 points and Nauset finish with 531. Sandwich rounded out the top three for combined team scores with a 425.

“We were thrilled,” Stevens said about the league meet. “Everybody was thrilled with their finish.”

Nauset’s girls were well represented at the top of the results during the league meet; junior Kaitlin Bohannon won the 100-yard backstroke with a Division 2 state championship-qualifying time of 1 minute 1.54 seconds, and sophomore Nina Mako qualified for state with victories in the 500 freestyle (5:33.65) and the 200 individual medley (2:17.42).

The girls also saw junior Ella Woods win the league diving title with a total score of 353.15, as well as eighth-grader Laura Kaser win the 200 free in 2:06.15.

Kaser’s time was enough to qualify for the South sectional Feb. 12 at Milford High School, where she finished 12th after posting a 2:07.29.

“She’s on all three of our relay teams,” Stevens said of Kaser. “She’s been a standout swimmer for us this year, it’s been amazing to watch.”

The girls relay teams performed especially well at the sectional; the 200 free relay team comprised of Kaser, Bohannon, Mako and senior Brynn Morris finished sixth with a time of 1:47.45. The same quartet finished ninth in the 400 free relay after posting a time of 3:54.48.

Although the boys didn’t have any winners at the league championship, they did have three swimmers — sophomore Will Crowell, freshman Keith Gagnon and senior captain John Szucs — advance to the boys South sectional, which took place Feb. 13 at Milford.

Crowell took 28th in the 200 IM (2:13.35) and 25th in the 100 free (53.41), while Szucs was 23rd in the 100 free (52.53) and posted a personal-best time of 1:00.02 in the 100 backstroke. Gagnon finished 30th in the 100 breaststroke in 1:07.57.

Bohannon, Morris, Kaser and Mako will represent Nauset’s girls in the Division 2 state championship Saturday at Boston University before Crowell, Szucs, Gagnon and senior Ethan Calouro compete in the boys state meet Sunday back at BU.

“I think they’re definitely looking forward to swimming at BU and at a university on the big stage there,” Stevens said. “We were just at a high school pool for sectionals, so I think they’re going to get a little more fired up to be back at a big pool in a big venue.


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