Friday’s and Saturday’s Penobscot Valley Championship swimming and diving meets figure to be the second dual meet between Bangor and Mount Desert Island in two weeks, but it won’t be a repeat, at least as far as the way either team wins.
The only head-to-head dual meet between the PVC powerhouses ended with the Bangor girls and MDI boys winning out two weeks ago at the Husson University pool in Bangor.
This time around, the venue is the Husson University pool in Bangor, where the boys will compete Friday and the girls on Saturday. Friday’s meet starts at 6 p.m. and Saturday’s gets under way at noon.
Coach Cindi Howard’s Bangor girls are after their 11th consecutive PVC title.
“It’s definitely going to be another repeat from our meet two weeks ago,” Howard said. “But anything can happen in meets like this, but I still think it’ll be another close one.”
Last time, the event came down to the final event, the 400-yard freestyle relay, before the Rams came out with a 97-89 victory. This time around, the pool will be crammed with even more talent from many other solid teams, so meet points will be at even more of a premium.
“There lots of talented swimmers,” said Howard. “Girls like Brewer’s Jessica Hodsdon, Tara Nitardy of John Bapst, Marley Clark and Amber Murray from Foxcroft Academy, MDI’s Chelsey Curran and Alyson Yau and some of our girls.”
Some of Bangor’s girls include freshman Mariah Reading (breaststroke, freestyle, relays) and senior Zarin Kacer (500 free, backstroke, relays).
Hodsdon is the defending 100-yard breaststroke champ. She swam a PVC record time of 1 minute, 8.37 seconds last year. She is also the anchor leg swimmer for Brewer’s relay teams and a 50 free swimmer. Nitardy is defending PVC champ in the 200 individual medley and 100 butterfly.
Curran and Yau, both key relay swimmers, put up points. Curran also swims the 100 and 200 free while Yau swims the 100 free. Marley Clark swims relays and is defending champ in the 100 butterfly and 50 free. Murray swims free, backstroke and butterfly.
In the boys meet, MDI’s boys are aiming for their sixth straight. Tony DeMuro’s Trojans edged the Rams 92-88 in their dual meet and it doesn’t figure to be any less competitive this time around.
“It’s an interesting dynamic,” DeMuro said. “It could be a deeper meet than it’s been in previous years with all the talent, and although one outstanding swimmer can’t really change the meet that much, he could change event points, which just might change the course of the meet.”
This year, that kind of swimmer might just be someone like Ellsworth’s Brian Batson, the defending PVC champ in the 100 butterfly and 200 IM.
“It all depends on what events he does,” DeMuro said. “If he goes in the 500 free, someone goes second instead of first. If he’s in the fly, he knocks someone else to number two… Something like that.”
DeMuro’s big guns are junior Ian Carbone (100 and 200 free, relays), senior Michael Breen (200 IM, 100 butterfly, relays), and junior Ty Onda (500 free, relays, 100 backstroke), and Patrick Breen (200 free, relays). For Bangor, it’s Joey Quinn (200 free, 100 free), Taylor Wicks (100 backstroke, 200 free), Sam Barnett (100 breaststroke, 200 IM) and Ihan Cameron (50 free, 100 free).
Other standouts include Brewer’s Brent Williams in the 500 free and 200 IM, John Bapst’s Drew Derosiers (2008 50 free and 100 breaststroke champ), Foxcroft Academy’s Seth Oldfield (100 breaststroke, 200 IM, relays), Orono senior diver Kirby Kelly and freshman swimmer Cameron Dwyer (200 free, 100 backstroke, relays).