ORONO, Maine — Dominating the freestyle events and establishing state and pool records, the Cape Elizabeth Capers won their third consecutive Maine Principals’ Association Class B Swimming and Diving Championship Monday at the University of Maine.
Coach Ben Raymond’s team amassed 487 points, Greely of Cumberland Center scored 300 1/2 and the young Mount Desert Island Trojans of Bar Harbor, who swam aggressively throughout the meet, climbed into third with 245 points.
“All the kids swam outstandingly. From our top swimmers to our middle swimmers and to everyone who swam for us in the meet, they all had great swims,” Raymond said as his team prepared to receive the team trophy.
“I am in awe,” said Bob Hale, coach of the Greely Rangers, commenting on Cape’s performance. Usually scoring 300 points as we did and a team is in the hunt. We were not even in the rearview mirror.
“I am proud of our swimmers and they way they swam. We competed like we do everyday in practice and swam best times,” he added.
The Capers talent and depth allowed them to dominate the freestyle individual events and the two free relays. In the 400 free relay, the champions set a state and meet record with a time of 3 minutes, 30.2 seconds, two seconds ahead of the previous record of 3:32.6 set by Cape in 2017.
Senior Olivia Tighe, with a leadoff 50.8 leg, gave the Caprtd nearly an eight-second margin on the field. Seniors Alicia Lawrence (54.8) and Hope Campbell (54.8) along with junior Caroline Mahoney (51.2) extended the lead to a 20-second victory over the runner-up.
In the 200 free relay, with the same members competing in a different order, the Capers collected their first relay state and meet mark at 1:35.2. According to the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaches Association 2018-2019 All-America time standards, Cape’s time will earn the relay All-America recognition.
Lawrence led off at 24.6 seconds followed by Mahoney (23.0), Campbell (24.3) and Tighe (23.1). The previous record of 1:36.2 was set in 2018 by the same four swimmers.
Tighe, voted Performer of the Meet, collected the first individual gold medal of the championship with a state- and meet-record performance in the 200 freestyle at a 1:50.2, a time worthy of NISCA All-America consideration.
Tighe split 24.9, 27.5, 28.3 and 29.4, eclipsing the state record (1:50.3) set in 2017 by Caitlin Tycz, who competes for the University of Southern California Trojans, and the meet record of 1:50.6 established in 2015 by Leila Johnston.
With Greely leading by 5 points after 3 events, the Capers collected 52 points in the 50 free. Mahoney (23.5) finished first, Lawrence (24.3) second, Campbell (24.5) fourth and Avery Palma ( 27.5) as Raymond’s team took control of the meet.
In the 100 free, the champions again scored 52 points. Tighe collected another gold (50.7), Lawrence took the silver (53.4) and Campbell placed fourth (54.3).
It was in the 500 free where the Capers extended their freestyle dominance, scoring 58 points led by Jade Lindenau’s 5:19.6 win and Ali Bragg’s 5:19.7 second-place finish. The two swam away from the field finishing nearly 14 seconds ahead of MDI bronze medalist Adria Horton.
Isabella Eremita and Zoe Evans contributed to Cape’s scoring in the event.
Horton’s third-place finish, along with Anna Naggert’s 12th-place effort, accomplished with a 28-second drop from her seed time, moved MDI into third ahead of Morse.
“These girls have so much heart. I am really proud of these kids,” said MDI coach Tony DeMuro.
Mahoney gave CE another record swim and gold medal in the 100 backstroke with a Wallace Pool record of 55.12. The time falls within the All-America consideration standard. Ellie Clarke of Ellsworth nabbed second (1:01.4).
Morse won the opening event, the 200 medley relay, in 1:48.61, missing the state record by three-tenths of a second. Olivia Harper (25.5), Hailey Harper (30.2), Ella Martin (26.3) and Emma Warner (26.8) collected a six-second win over second-place Cape.
Hailey Harper won the breaststroke (1:07.1) and the 200 individual medley (2:10.3). Olivia Harper captured the 100 butterfly (54.98) and set a state and pool record with a 23.3-second lead leg of 200 free relay.
Both her times fall within the All-America consideration standard.
Greely’s Julie Bisson won the 11-dive, one-meter competition with 389.25 points. Teagan Blackie of Old Town was second (317.75) and Ellsworth’s Elena Springer (307.75) placed third.