When each new crop of Broad Run swimmers matriculates up the Spartans’ high school team, Coach Beverly Kelley is not shy about reminding them who taught them how to swim as 5-year-old children. After all it was Kelley who introduced dozens of her current athletes to the pool as a swim instructor at the Ashburn Village Sports Pavillion.
Friday, many of the boys whose doggy paddles she molded into actual strokes helped the Spartans to a fourth consecutive AA Dulles District championship at Claude Moore Recreation Center.
Led by senior double-winners Mark Sarman and Jacob Leidy and just enough depth in the rest of the lineup, Broad Run fended off a strong challenge from Freedom to come away with the victory and complete four years of dominance for the Spartans’ senior class. Broad Run finished with 364 points, but could not shake Freedom (343) until the completion of the 100 backstroke race. The Briar Woods boys finished third (242) as the Spartans have now gone four years without losing a district dual or championship meet.
On the girls’ side, Briar Woods showed why it should challenge for the Virginia A/AA state title later this month, winning all but two events and earning 15 total top-five finishes to claim a second straight championship. The Falcons (412) easily distanced themselves from the field as Freedom (316) claimed another second-place finish and was followed by Potomac Falls (297).
“It was a little too close for my liking,” Kelley said of the back-and-forth race with Freedom for much of the night. “Freedom has a really good team and that’s as close as it’s ever been the last four years. But our seniors weren’t going to lose that meet and they pulled it out.”
As he has done all season, Sarman led the way for the Spartans, sweeping the 200 yard IM (1:54.44) – by nearly 12 seconds – and 100 yard butterfly (50.42) to set two new meet records. After winning both events at the state meet last season and earning the district’s top times in every individual event other than the 100 breast and 500 free this season (which he would have swum in last week’s postponed dual meet), he now has his sights set on breaking the state 200 IM and 100 fly records.
Leidy won the 50 free (22.21) and 100 back (55.15) and teamed with Brian Cole, John Morrisroe and Alan Horback to win the 400 free relay (3:25.91). But the Spartans’ depth was tested by Freedom and the 27 points Broad Run picked up from a smattering of 10th through 12th-place finishes proved critical.
“Those really helped,” Kelley said. “Having kids score in every event, a few points here and a few there, that’s huge in championship meets.”
Nicholas Campbell (49.54) edged Horback (49.94) to win the 100 free and Andrew Smith took first in the 100 breast (1:04.09) for Freedom which also won the 200 medley relay (Campbell, Smith, Christopher Crampton, Michael Harman – 1:42.87) and 200 free relay (Harman, Ozan Duran, Smith, Nicholas) with a strong showing of their own depth.
Briar Woods’ Matthew Nielsen swept the 200 (1:47.43) and 500 free (4:52.65).
For the Falcon girls, sisters Alli (junior) and Kristin Haufler (sophomore) continued their domination along with sophomore Caleigh Hensley. Ali Haufler swept the 200 fly (57.52) and 200 free (1:57.07), Kristin took first in the 100 free (54.58) and 200 IM (2:14.10) and Hensley notched a pair of victories in the 50 free (25.14) and 100 back (1:01.25). Sophomore Elizabeth Mittan won the 500 free (5:22.60) by a mere .14 seconds over freshman teammate Caitlyn Brown (5:22.74) and Briar Woods took two of the three relays. In the 200 medley it was Hensley, the Haufler sisters and Erica Comm winning in 1:52.18 and Brown joined Hensley and both Hauflers to place first in the 400 free relay (3:40.89).
Tuscarora’s Amanda Presgraves won the 100 breast (1:07.82) – one of only two events in which Briar Woods failed to land two swimmers in the top six – and Freedom’s Katherine Doherty, Katie Johnson, Rachel Moffitt and Stephanie Clarke broke up the Falcons’ bid for a relay sweep, out-touching Comm, Mittan, Brown and Veronica Smith by .3 seconds in the 200 free (1:46.49).
After finishing fourth at the state meet last season, the Falcons have more than enough talent at the top and depth throughout their lineup to make a run their first state championship. Meantime the Broad Run boys will be looking to improve on their fifth-place finish at states. Kelley said she plans on tinkering with her relay lineups at this weekend’s AA Region II meet at Fork Union Military Academy in the hopes of snaring a few more points at the state meet.
Brentsville sweeps Evergreen District meet
The reigning Virginia A/AA boys’ champion Brenstville Tigers took the first step toward defending their title with a dominant performance last Wednesday at the AA Evergreen District championships in Warrenton.
Led by senior Ryan Dunne‘s perfect night, the Tigers (245) rolled past Kettle Run (139) to claim their second straight league crown while Fauquier (37) and Liberty (7) rounded out the scoring. Brentsville’s girls completed the sweep, piling up 223 points to easy out-pace Kettle Run (102), Fauquier (77) and Liberty (26).
Junior Justin Doyle, seniors Chuckie Zumbaugh and Tim Rackowski and junior Ben Cumberland got the Tigers started with a victory in the 200 yard medley relay (1:41.88) and then Dunne notched his first win of the night in the 200 free with a state cut time of 1:48.28. Dunne – who placed third in the 200 free (1:44.33) and second in the 50 free (21.81) at last year’s state meet – then won the 50 free (22.30) and pitched in as Brentsville swept all three relays. Cumberland, Zumbaugh, Dunne and senior Nathan Brown won the 200 free relay and Brown, Doyle, Rackowski and Dunne took first in the 400 free relay to cap the night.
Rackowski took first in the 100 fly, Brown won the 100 free, freshman Aaron Romanowski won the 500 free and Zumbaugh placed first in the 100 breast.
On the girls side, N.C. State-bound senior Nicole Haynes was a double-winner, sweeping the 200 free (2:01.60) and 100 back — the event she won at last year’s state meet where her team finished 11th overall. Haynes joined Amy and Kara Tansill and Annalee Gallagher to win the 200 medley relay (1:57.56), Kara Tansill won the 100 fly and Amy Tansill placed first in the 100 breast. Freshman Sydney Thorpe rounded out the big night for the Tigers with a first place finish in the 500 free.
Kettle Run’s Kelsey Smith won the 200 IM in 2:16.70, setting a school record in the process, while Fauquier’s Abby MacDonald won the 50 free (25.64). But even in the events they failed to win, the Tigers stacked the top of the standings. In all, they swept the top three spots in three events.