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Millennium diver provides state competition highlight
Submitted by Mike Russo on Thu, 11/14/2013 - 10:00pm
Millennium did not have as many competitors as usual in the Division I state swimming and diving meet Nov. 8-9 at Skyline Aquatic Center in Mesa, but first-year coach Sean Feineman was pleased with the performances of those who did compete.
“We had fewer qualifiers this year than Millennium is accustomed to,” Feineman said. “It seems to get faster every year.”
Slightly more stringent qualifying standards also played a role in Millennium having fewer competitors for the state meet.
Millennium’s boys placed 29th, with 6.5 points, and the Lady Tigers were 29th with 1 point.
Phoenix Brophy Prep won the boys championship with 294 points. Scottsdale Chaparral was the runner-up at 259, followed by Phoenix Desert Vista, 211; Mesa Mountain View, 190.5; and Mesa Red Mountain, 110.
Phoenix Desert Vista won the girls title with 278.5 points, followed by Phoenix Xavier Prep. 267; Phoenix Pinnacle, 243; Scottsdale Chaparral, 211.5; and Chandler, 169.
Millennium’s boys finished 19th and its girls were 20th last year.
The Tigers’ best showing came in the 200 individual medley, where senior Bryan Smok tied for 12th in a time of 1 minute, 59.82 seconds.
“That was Bryan’s season-best time in the 200 IM,” Feineman said. “It’s amazing he even made it to the finals at state this season. He was able to swim in only one qualifier this year because of illness and some family reasons. I was really proud of him. It was a shock that he got into state because he swam that 2:06 at [Phoeinx] Brophy [Prep] early in the season.”
Smok, who was seeded 26th in the event going in, finished 10th in Friday’s 200 individual medley in 2:00.46 to reach the finals. That time was nearly six seconds faster than his seeded time.
He finished 17th in the 200 IM in 2012. His time was 2:03.33.
Millennium’s other boy scoring points was senior Patrick Maloney, who was 14th in the 100 backstroke, recording a time of 55.47 seconds.
“It was not a swim he was very happy about,” Feineman said. “He had to wait a long time to swim his only event and that may have affected him. He just thought he could have gone faster on Saturday.”
Maloney qualified for the finals by swimming a 57.64, the 10th fastest time, in the preliminary round.
Last year, Maloney was 11th in the 100 backstroke in 55.08, establishing a new PR.
Drake Russell placed 19th in the 50 freestyle with a time of 22.64. He entered the meet as the No. 19 seed with a time of 22:58.
“Drake did well,” Feineman said. “That was the second-best time he put up this season.”
The Lady Tigers’ point came from a 16th-place finish by diver Rachel Burton, who was only 7.55 points out of a 14th-place tie.
This was the first season in several years that Millennium had divers, and Burton’s showing was satisfying, Feineman said.
“Rachel’s performance was the highlight of the meet for us,” Feineman said. “To have a freshman finish 16th at state is great. She broke her own school record. She had a great meet. For her to squeeze into the finals, she was ecstatic about it. She seems to do better when she has pressure on her.”
Morgan Rosztoczy, who entered the meet seeded 15th in the 50 freestyle, recorded a time of 25.03 in Friday’s preliminary heat to earn an alternate spot for the final. She did not get to swim in the finals and placed 17th.
“Morgan tied for 16th in the preliminaries so she had to do a swim off at the end of the day,” Feineman said.
The Lady Tigers’ two other entries in the state meet failed to reach the finals.
Anissa O’Connell was 26th in the 100 breaststroke in 1:11.19. She entered the meet as the No. 27 seed in the event.
“It was her best time of the season,” Feineman said. “There were a couple of things she could have done differently but to end the season on a season-best time is pretty good.”
The 200 medley relay team of Rosztoczy, Enzley Luckow, Lalia Tate and O’Connell finished 21st with a time of 1:56.97.
“They were seeded 24th going in and finished 21st with a season-best time,” Feineman said.
Although Millennium did not garner a lot of points at the state meet, Feineman was encouraged by the competitors’ results and he is looking forward to next season.
“We will have all the ladies back next year,” Feineman said. “We’ve got some people who will step up next year.”
Mike Russo can be reached by email at email@example.com.
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