Yorktown‘s girls won their 20th straight National District championship on Saturday night at Yorktown Aquatic Center. They beat Washington-Lee, 622.5 to 391, to send a 17th consecutive senior class out undefeated in district competition. The roles were reserved in the boys’ meet with W-L beating Yorktown, 471 to 447. Falls Church finished third in both meets with 319 and 359 points, respectively.
“There is a lot more parity in the district than their was in the past,” said Yorktown coach Claire DiCesare. “We knew that nothing was going to be handed to us.”
The dominance that Yorktown’s girls swim and dive team has experienced for the last two decades in the National District is nothing short of extraordinary. They haven’t just won year in, year out, they’ve crushed their district opponents with state-level talent and incredible depth.
And it’s not just because they swim in the relatively weak National District. In the last 10 years, they have raised two state championship banners (2006 & 2007) and have only finished outside of the top 10 at states once. In that same period, they have six top-five performances at regionals, propelled by a long list of first and second team All-Met swimmers.
“We’re really excited for regionals and states this year. We have a shot at taking our biggest team to states [in the last six years],” said DiCesare. “The girls realize they have a really great shot at doing well this year, and they want to take advantage of the opportunity.”
In 2013, the Patriot ladies are led by senior Abigail Young and freshman Suzanne Dolan who accounted for 160 of Yorktown’s 622.5 points at districts as individual winners in two events apiece and members of both winning relays.
Young led a first-, second- and third-place sweep in the 200-yard individual medley, touching first in a time of 2 minutes, 12.89 seconds. She was followed by freshmen Katherine Lundy and Michaela Morrison in 2:18.92 and 2:19.12. Later, she earned her second victory in the 100 backstroke, finishing ahead of teammate Amanda Didawick, 59.86 to 1:02.20, respectively.
Dolan was sensational for the Patriots with victories in the 50 freestyle and 100 breaststroke. She beat out senior teammate Eleanor Belilos by .47 seconds to capture the title in the 50 freestyle, winning in 25.06. Next, she touched out Falls Church senior Laura Schwartz, a two-time all-American, in the 100 breaststroke, 1:07.43 to 1:07.51.
Dolan and Young also joined with Didawick and Belilos for victories in the 200 medley (1:51.04) and 200 freestyle relays (1:40.01).
two-time all-American, turned in a 58.08 in the girls’ 100 butterfly, well ahead a trio of Yorktown girls — Kirby Nassetta (59.71), Didawick (59.76) and Belilos (1:00.77). Schwartz concluded her National District career by leading the cheap car insurance Jaguars in a victory in the 400 freestyle in 3:49.86. She was joined by her sister, Julia Schwartz, Haley Mclean and Sydney Langer.
Washington-Lee freshman Katherine Emanuel claimed wins in the girls’ 200 freestyle and 500 freestyle in 2:01.39 and 5:23.55, respectively. W-L’s Jessica Green also notched a victory for the Generals in the 100 freestyle with a time of 55.64.
On the boys’ side, W-L earned it’s third district title in a row with only a single individual victory all night. It’s the first three-peat in the district in ten years — the last time coming from Falls Church (2001–2003). With much of it’s talent comprised of underclassmen, the Generals may not give up the title for some time.
“We really preach the idea of being a family and talking about how we’re a team, not a group of individuals. And it showed on Saturday,” said W-L head coach Kristina Dorville.
W-L’s lone loss of the season came against Yorktown in the last dual meet of the season. They lost by one point.
“Last week was really tough for our team,” said Dorville. “The coaches and I strategized for nine hours after the Yorktown meet figuring out the best meet sheet to let our swimmers improve times and move up from their seeds.
“Every single one of our club swimmers came to me as said, ‘Put me in whatever event you need me in order to win.’ That’s commitment,” added Dorville.
Michael Emanuel won the boys’ 500 freestyle in 5:05.46 and finished third in the 200 freestyle in 1:52.30. The rest of the Generals 471 points came from their two winning relays and team effort from swimmers in every heat.
Jay Delancey, Francisco Rodriguez, Philip O’Doherty and Andrew Fleckenstein took home the win in the 200 medley relay in 1:43.26. Rodriguez, Emanuel, Bryan Meade and Delancey won in the 400 freestyle relay in 3:21.73. Yorktown’s Max Fish, Michael Poppalardo, Griffin Romanek and David Emson won the 200 freestyle relay in 1:31.54.
Fish, a Yorktown senior, swam away from the field in both the 100 and 200 freestyles in 1:48.27 and 47.91, respectively — a combined five-second margin of victory over the finishers in second place.
Hayfield senior Joel Desatnick cruised in the 200 individual medley (2:04.03) and 100 breaststroke (59.40). His sophomore teammate Ben Lambert also claimed double victories, beating Falls Church’s James Sturges in the 50 free, 22.21 to 22.61, and W-L’s Delancey in the 100 butterfly, 51.30 to 54.70. Sturges won the title in the boys’ 100 backstroke with a 55.81 ahead of Delancey in 56.15.
Yorktown’s Hunter Simmons beat out Falls Church’s Tyler Smith in the boys’ 1-meter diving event with a score of 386.25 to 348.15. Hayfield’s Anise Muir won the girls’ event with a score of 350.55. Yorktown’s Mason Nassetta and Elena Bavolack finished in second and third with 335.15 and 321.90 points, respectively.
Tags: 2013 High School Championship meets, Abigail Young, Amanda Didawick, Andrew Fleckenstein, Ben Lambert, Bryan Meade, David Emson, Elena Bavolack, Falls Church High School, Francisco Rodriguez, Griffin Romanek, Haley McLean, Hayfield Secondary, James Sturges, Jay Delancey, Jessica Green, Joel DeSatnick, Julia Schwartz, Katherine Emanuel, Katherine Lundy, Kirby Nassetta, Laura Schwartz, Mason Nassetta, Max Fish, Michael Emanuel, Michael Poppalardo, Michaela Morrison, Philip O'Doherty, Suzanne Dolan, Sydney Langer, Washington-Lee HIgh School, Yorktown High School