With 66 of its 73 athletes turning in personal best times, Chesterbrook easily outpaced Overlee, 217.5-184.5 to claim its first Northern Virginia Swimming League Division 1 championship since 2004, and finish the dual season undefeated. Overlee had won the past four division titles.
“Such an intense meet,” Chesterbrook assistant coach Colin Stuver said. “The place was packed. We had swimmers from way back in the day coming out to watch, and it turned out that it was probably the fastest our kids have ever swum. We’re talking about taking a full second off their [previous best] times.”
The meet meant a lot to the Chesterbrook program, which had dominated the division earlier last decade, but had ceded power to Overlee, and it appeared that would stay the same this season.
“We were definitely the underdogs coming into the season,” Stuver said.
Leading the way for Chesterbrook was Tim Clancy, who took first in the 15-18 50 freestyle (25.25 seconds), 50 butterfly (28.00) and swam the anchor leg of the 200 medley relay team that won by more than an eight-second margin (1:52.06).
In the 13-14 boys, Joey Sullivan took top spot in the 50 free (26.78, a full second faster than the runner-up), 50 fly (28.27, two seconds ahead of the pace), and swam the opening leg of the winning 100 medley relay (56.46) team.
What made this meet special, Stuver said, were swimmers coming from out of the blue to claim titles. Perhaps none more surprising, he said, was the performance of Libby Davis, who dropped three seconds off her time to win the girls’ 9-10 backstroke in 40.95, while swimming in the outside lane.
Stuver said he worked closely with Davis during last Friday’s practice and she looked better than she ever had.
“So we figured we had nothing to lose,” Stuver said. “We said, ‘Let’s go win this one.’ “
In other NVSL meets that decided divisional championships:
Mt. Vernon Park claimed the Division 5 title with a 207-195 victory over Lakevale Estates, in a meet that featured 18 races decided by less than a half-second each. None was closer than Jack Benson’s victory in the 15-18 boys’ 50 breast (36.14) by .04 seconds. Madelyn Bolger won the 15-18 girls’ free (29.84) by .15. Cassidy Bayer, meantime, broke her own league record, swimming the 9-10 25 fly in 14.78, .02 faster than the time she turned in just a week earlier.
In Division 6, Hunt Valley defeated Sideburn Run also by, 207-195. Forest Hollow’s 209-188 victory over Poplar Heights gave it the Division 9 crown. Rolling Forest won the closest meet among the undefeateds, squeaking past Fair Oaks Rec, 203-199, to take Division 12. Herndon beat Rolling Valley, 226-195, for the Division 17 title.
Two NVSL records fell last weekend. The Highlands quartet of Charlie Putnam, Chuck Katis, Chris Barnard and Stephen Richards swam the 200 medley relay in 1:50.62, breaking a nine-year mark. Also, Elizabeth Hall of Poplar Tree turned in a time of 28.26 in the 50 fly breaking the standard set by Kings Ridge’s Amanda Kendall last year.
Fresh off its dual meet victory over rival Tilden Woods two weekends ago, Rockville (1061.5 points) took the Division A title, outpacing Tilden Woods by 133 points. Elaina Gu won four events in the 11-12 girls group for the Rays, 100 IM, 50 free, 50 back and 50 fly. Three others won three events apiece – Cara Chuang in the15-18 girls (100 free, 100 back and 50 fly), Harrison Gu in the 13-14 boys (110 IM, 50 breast and 50 fly), and John Jeang in the 11-12 boys (100 IM, 50 free and 50 back).
In Division G, Tallyho won the closest of the MCSL divisionals, winning by a margin of 1 ½ points over Mohican. Chris Verboncouer took three events for Tallyho – the 15-18 boys’ 100 back (59.37), 100 IM (1:00.34) and 50 fly (25.86).
Two Takoma Park boys – Joshua Tomlin, Jared Miller – each won three individual races and teamed on the 200 free relay squad whose 1:52.53 shattered a 17-year league mark Adam Todd, who was also on the medley team, won two individual events.
Takoma Park’s Amina Wilson won three individual girls’ races (100 fre, 50 back, 100 IM) and teamed with Kai Waller, Callie Mills and Jayln Robinson to win the 200 free relay (2:02.49), which also broke the league mark, set by Takoma four years ago .