Weekly Feature

2018-10-11 / Sports

Swim team wins fourth-straight division title


Orchard Park girls swimming is undefeated again. The Lady Quakers defeated Lancaster 140-45 Tuesday in a regular-season ending battle of undefeated squads. The team put out its beat lineup to ensure a fourth-straight undefeated regular season.

“It was fantastic,” Orchard Park coach Bret Norvilitis said. “We put our strongest lineup together just to make sure. We knew that Lancaster was a good team, but we didn’t exactly know how well it was going to go. They swam really well.”

Allison McCune was especially impressive in the meet, winning the 500-yard freestyle in 5:32.53. Meanwhile, the 200 medley relay of Ella Mikulec, Mackenzie Fischer, Paige Salmon and Katherine Jones won again and hit a state-qualifying time again. They had already qualified for the state meet early in the season and hadn’t swam together since. It was a strong overall team effort.

“They haven’t swam together for a while because once they qualify, most of the time we move things around,” Norvilitis said. “We put them together again and they made the state cut again, which was pretty cool. Mackenzie Fisher in the breast stroke was very good and so was Isabelle Sapio. They went first and third and Lancaster has some nice breaststrokers so that’s nice to see.”

It was another impressive season for the Quakers, who did not really even have any close meets. They have been clearly the best team in Western New York for the entirety of their seniors’ run in high school. That success is the result of consistent hard work day-in and day-out for the girls.

“It’s pretty cool,” Norvilitis said. “Obviously, it was one of those unwritten goals, but it would have been foolhardy to say. This team is so deep that some of our lineups where girls are swimming ‘off’ events are still really fast. We’ve got a lot of really good all-around swimmers. It’s just so exciting to see them all swim so well and for the results to be commensurate with the effort they put in. They worked hard every day, even on those crazy hot days and in the early mornings. They put in the time and this is what the reward is, four years in a row undefeated.”

The postseason is approaching and the vast majority of the team is qualified for at least one of the meets. The team should have a large group at ECIC, Class A, Section VI and New York State Championship meets. They’re looking to swim well and qualify as many as they can for the state meet.

“I just want us to swim as well as we can,” Norvilitis said. “This is the time when we start tapering. What I want to see is just how fast these girls can be. Because they were very fast all season. Now we take some time to taper them and have a chance to go fast against really good competition. I just want the goal to be to see how fast they can go, because I think a lot of them are going to make the state cut. They are a couple who are right on the cusp and I don’t think they realize it.”

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