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Diary of a Mad Sportswriter: Shen aquamen rout way to Section II title

Diary of a Mad Sportswriter

Stan Hudy is a sportswriter for The Saratogian and Community News. He covers high school and youth sports in the Saratoga County area as well as writing a weekly book review on sports books. He's not just a "stick and ball" sportswriter, he's willing to take on any sport as well as any subject.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Shen aquamen rout way to Section II title

NISKAYUNA – It wasn’t a question of if the Shenendehowa boys swimming and diving team would win its second straight Section II large division title and fifth in six years, but by how much.

The Plainsmen aquamen swamped the competition at Niskayuna High School, posting a whopping first place score of 479 points, leaving second-place Bethlehem Central gasping for air in second, 153 points back with 326. Shaker was another pool length behind with 263.50 points followed by Schenectady with 225 and Saratoga in fifth with 203.

Along the way, Shenendehowa presented five individual Section II winners onto the first lane starting block along with capturing two Section II relay titles and placing seven members on the state qualifying team that will compete Feb. 29 to March 1.

“So many kids stepped up yesterday to be in a positive position today,” Shenendehowa coach Chuck Dunham said. “We had 19 kids swim Friday and 17 back today. It’s the highest number I’ve ever seen. A lot of them snuck in the eighth spot or into the top 16.”

The annual event takes the sectional qualifiers that meet a predetermined time and face off on Friday to establish the top 16 swimmers that will compete for points the next day, Saturday.

Through the first three events on Saturday, Shenendehowa held a 65 point lead over second place Bethlehem and never looked back.

Plainsmen senior and Section II meet Most Outstanding Swimmer Ryan Brauer captured two individual races and swam legs on two championship relays. His time in the 200-yard individual medley was good enough for first place, a spot on the state team in the event and broke Niskayuna’s Robert manor’s pool record from 2004 with a time of one minute, 56.30 seconds. He won the 500-freestyle in 4:43.71 and swam anchor legs on the 200- and 400-freestyle relays, both winners, state qualifiers and with All-America Consideration times.

“I’ve swam here for five years and I’ve never lost a dual meet or not won a Section II title,” Brauer said. “It doesn’t get old. If we’re winning, everyone is enjoying themselves and everyone is happy.”

Senior Mike Christine had a first in his final Section II meet, an individual victory, this year in the 100-butterfly. He also swam legs on the two winning relays and qualified in the 50-freestyle.

The youngster on the Shen state-bound squad, Jacob Johnson won the 50-freestyle in 21.50 seconds, breaking Niskayuna’s 2005 pool record set by the Silver Warrior’s Michael Derocco. He was also part of the All-America Consideration relays.
“Everyone came ready to race today,” Johnson said. “We’ve been looking forward to this meet all year.”

Also earning spots on the Section II All-Star squad were sophomores Troy Nichols and Ben Quay who went 2-3 in the 200-freestyle along with Saratoga Springs junior Devon Byrt. Blue Streak junior Kevin Murphy will head to states, finishing in fourth-place in the 100-backstroke in 56.70 seconds.

Another Plainsmen surprise was sophomore Ben Quay who dropped 11 seconds off his preliminary time in the 500-freestyle, earning his seat on the Nassau County Aquatic Center.

Despite a record-setting day by the Shenendehowa aquanauts, there was still some disappointment from not being able to share the wealth to a few more teammates.

“This is the final sectional meet for me and Mike (Christine), we wanted (Sean Parnett) to get an All-American, he didn’t have one yet and we wanted to get both guys (Parnett and Ben Quay) to states on the relay. We just missed (by 2/100ths of a second).”

The Shenendehowa squad never considered the Section II meet their final, they still have two weeks to taper their bodies to become ready to explode at the state meet. More is yet to come.

Section II boys swimming championships
Large school division
Team totals

1. Shenendehowa 479 2. Bethlehem Central 326 3. Shaker 263.50 4. Schenectady 225 5. Saratoga 203 6. Mohonasen-Schalmont 188 7. Guilderland-Voorheesville 160 8. Queensbury 147.50 9. Ballston Spa 90 10. Niskayuna 80 11. Albany 38.
200-yard medley relay
1. Shaker (Frankie Dyer, Brian Maloy, Steve Maxwell, David Rowley), Q AA-C, 1:38.35
2. Schenectady, Q 1:40.11. 3. Bethlehem, Q 1:40.514. Shenendehowa (Troy Nichols, Michael Bidwell, Sean Parnett, Ben Quay), 1:42.74. 5. Mohonasen-Schalmont, 1:42.71. Local Finishers: 7. Saratoga Springs (Kevin Murphy, Dennis Florence, Devon Byrt, Ryan Koella) 1:45.65.
200-yard freestyle
1. Frankie Dyer (SHAK), 1:43.16, Q AA_C. 2.Troy Nichols (Shen), 1:46.31 Q 3.Ben Quay (Shen), 1:47.27 Q 4.Nate Foley (BC) 1:47.86 Q 5. Devon Byrt (SS)m 1:48.52 Q. Local finishers: 6. Sean Parnett (Shen), 1:49.34 Q .7. Travis Bueno (Shen), 1:51.13 10.Greg Warmt (Bspa), 1:56.59 12. Nick Kirkpatrick.
200-yard IM
1. Ryan Brauer (Shen), 1:56.30 Q 2.Vadim Yafayev (GV), 1:57.37 Q 3.Chris Lotano (SCH) 1:58.84 Q 4. Andrew Guinther (Q), 2:02:85 Q 5. Michael Bidwell (Shen), 2:05.00. Local Finishers: 7. Kevin Murphy (SS), 2:07.27 8. Ryan Koella (SS) 2:07.88 11. Michael Gao (Shen), 2:09.58 13. Aristo Wong (Shen), 2:09.7115.Eric Baker (SS) 2:13.73.
50-yard freestyle
1.Jacob Johnson (Shen), 21.50 Q 2. Mike Christine (Shen), 21.64 Q 3.Ryan Quinn (SCH), 22.16 Q 4.Brian Maloy (SHK), 22.27 Q 5.Michael Dugan, (Mohon-Schal), 22.45. Q Local finishers: 11. Chris Heckmen (Bspa), 23.34 12. Aaron Ouyang (Shen), 23.77 16. Matt McAuliffe (SS), 24.19.
1-meter diving
1. Ian Hogan (BSPA), 536.40 Q Eric Messina (SHAK), 483.20 Q 3. Grant Facteau (BC), 462.30 Q 4. Jon DiPietro (SCHEN), 420.05 Q 5. Sean Molloy (GV), 404.55 Q Local finishers: 8. D.J. Thompson (SHEN), 327.25. 10. Mark Conley (SHEN), 306.40. 14. Jacob Woods (SS), 247.25.
100-yard butterfly
1. Mike Christine (Shen), 52.23 Q 2. Michael Dugan (Mohon-Schal), 52.42 Q 3. Jeff Singer (Q), 55.42 4. Taylor Vancott (BC), 55.82 5. Devon Byrt (SS) 56.16 Local finishers: 10. Adam Kalish (Shen), 59.85 13. Dennis Florence (SS) 1:00.82 15.Lane Heed (Shen), 1:05.47.
100-yard freestyle
1. Jacob Johnson (Shen), 47.17 Q 2. Chris Lotano (SCH), 48.02 Q 3. Drew Acquaviva (BC), 48.44 Q 4. David Rowley (SHK) 49.36 Q 5. Devin Hallam (Mohon-Schal), 49.70 Q.. Local finishers: 11. Kyle Moise (Shen) 52.36 12. Ryan Koella (SS) 52.37 14. Aaron Ouyang (Shen), 53.22 15. Matt McAuliffe (SS), 53.47.
1. Ryan Brauer (Shen), 4:43.71 Q 2.Troy Nichols (Shen), 4:46.70 Q 3.Nate Foley (BC), 4:46.85 Q 4. Ben Quay (Shen), 4:49.49 Q 5. Sean Parnett (Shen), 5:02:45. Local finishers: 9. Nick Kirkpatrick (SS) 5:22:19.
200-yard freestyle relay
1. Shenendehowa (Mike Christine, Sean Parnett, Jacob Johnson, Ryan Brauer) Q AA-C, 1:28.16 2. Bethlehem, 1:28.89. Q 3. Schenectady, 1:29.49 Q 4.Shaker, 1:29.55 Q 5. Mohonasen-Schalmont, 1:30.58. Q Local finishers: 7. Ballston Spa ( Ian Hogan, Alex Pulling, Tyler Johnson, Chris Heckmen), 1:36.62. 9. Saratoga Springs (Matt McAuliffe, Colin Bresnahan, Leo Catricala, Nick Kirkpatrick), 1:41.37.
100-yard backstroke
1. Drew Acquaviva (BC), 52.99 Q 2. Frankie Dyer (SHK), 53.01 Q 3.David Woods (SCH), 56.33 Q 4. Kevin Murphy (SS), 56.70 Q 5. Steve Maxwell (SHK), 57.21. Local finishers: 11. Taylor Nichols (Shen), 1:00.29 13. Eric Baker (SS), 1:03.64.
100-yard breaststroke
1. Brian Maloy, (SHK), 59.82 Q 1.Andrew Guinther, (Q), 59.82 Q 3.Vadim Yafayev (GV), 1:01.20 Q 4. Michael Bidwell (Shen) 1:02.47 Q 5. Aristo Wong (Shen), 1:03..76. Local finishers: 8. Michael Gao (Shen), 1:06.19 10. Adam Goodcoff (Mohon-Schal), 1:06.50. 11. Dennis Florence (SS) 1:07.39.
400-yard freestyle relay
1. Shenendehowa (Mike Christine, Troy Nichols, Jacob Johnson, Ryan Brauer), 3:13.92 Q AA-C. 2. Schenectady, 3:22.02. 3. Saratoga Springs, 3:22.06 4. Bethlehem Central, 3:25.80. 5. Guilderland-Vooheesville, 3:29.91. Local finishers: 8. Ballston Spa (Nate Heckman, Greg Warmt, Alex Pulling, Chris Heckman), 3:37.37.
State qualifiers
Diving – Ian Hogan (BSPA), 536.40, Eric Messina (SHK), 483.20, Grant Fecteau (BC), 462.30, Jon DiPietro (SCH), 420.05, Sean Molloy (GV), 404.55. 200-yard medley relay – Frankie Dyer, Brian Maloy, Steve Maxwell, David Rowley (SHK), 1:38.35. 200-yard freestyle – Frankie Dyer (Shen), 1:43.16, Troy Nichols (Shen), 1:46.31, Ben Quay (Shen), 1:47.27, Nate Foley (BC), 1:47.86, Devon Byrt (SS), 1:48.52, Sean Parnett (Shen), 1:49.34. 200-yard IM – Ryan Brauer (Shen), 1:56.30, Vadim Yafayev (GV), 1:57.37, Chris Lotano (SCH) 1:58.84, Andrew Guinther (Q), Michael Bidwell (Shen), 2:05.00. 50-yard freestyle – Jacob Johnson (Shen), 21.50, Mike Christine (Shen), 21.64, Ryan Quinn (SCH), 22.16, Brian Maloy (SHK), 22.27, Michael Dugan, (Mohon-Schal), 22.45, David Rowley (SHK). 100-yard butterfly – Mike Christine (Shen), 52.23, Michael Dugan (Mohon-Schal), 52.42. 100-yard-free – Jacob Johnson (Shen), 47.17, Chris Lotano (SCH), 48.02, Drew Acquaviva (BC), 48.44, David Rowley (SHK), 49.36, Devin Hallam (Mohon-Schal), 49.70. 500-yard-freestyle – Ryan Brauer (Shen), 4:43.71, Troy Nichols (Shen), 4:46.70, Nate Foley (BC), 4:46.85, Ben Quay (Shen), 4:49.49. 200-yard freestyle relay – Shenendehowa (Mike Christine, Sean Parnett, Jacob Johnson, Ryan Brauer AA-C), 1:28.16, Bethlehem, 1:28.89, Schenectady, 1:29.49, Shaker, 1:29.55, Mohonasen-Schalmont, 1:30.58. 100-yard backstroke – Drew Acquaviva (BC), 52.99, Frankie Dyer (SHK), 53.01, David Woods (SCH), 56.33, Kevin Murphy (SS), 56.70. 100-yard breaststroke – Brian Maloy (T) (SHK), 59.82, Andrew Guinther (T) (Queensbury), 59.82, Vadim Yafayev (GV), 1:01.20, Michael Bidwell (Shen) 1:02.47. 400-yard freestyle relay – 1. Shenendehowa (Mike Christine, Troy Nichols, Jacob Johnson, Ryan Brauer), 3:13.92.

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