Several state records are broken by 2013-14 Lockport team
Staff Reports Lockport Union-Sun & Journal
ITHACA, N.Y. —
“Winners train, failure complains.”
This has been the motto that the YMCA Stingrays have backed up all season long in practices, meets, invitationals, and finally at the YMCA State Swimming Championships held at Ithaca College on March 14-16.
Lockport came into the meet with 20 swimmers who qualified for the championship meet, and walked away with three state champions and a third-place overall finish in the 8 and under girls division as a team. Swimmers also set numerous team records over the weekend.
The Stingrays’ 8-U team has surprised teams throughout the past season with their strength in every stroke and dominating relays. This state meet was no different, with numerous top-10 finishes.
Lockport’s girls team made up of Grace Buzak, Gracie Cordle, Madison Fragale, Elizabeth Kershaw, and Elizabeth Swartz again shocked their competition and made their presence felt in the pool.
Madison Fragale started out being ranked 29th going into the 25 freestyle and ended up swimming to a first-place finish overall and a state title. Other top finishers were Gracie Cordle with a third in the 25 free, Grace Buzak seventh in the 50 free, Elizabeth Kershaw seventh in the 25 back and Elizabeth Swartz 10th in the 50 free.
Lockport’s 100 free relay made up of Fragale, Cordle, Buzak and Elizabeth Swartz placed second and the 100 medley relay made up of Kershaw, Cordle, Swartz, and Buzak came in fifth.
Competing in the 8-U Division for the last time, Lockport’s Aidan Morgan was dominant in all freestyle events and won state titles in three different individual events — the 25 free, 50 free and 100 free. In winning the 100 free, Morgan set a new state YMCA record with a time of 1:07.15 . The last time a YMCA swimmer walked away with three state titles in one meet, let alone a state record, was more than 30 years ago.
In the 13-14 year old division, Lockport’s Katie Pollock won the 100 free, had a second in the 50 free and set a state record in the 50 freestyle, leading off the 200 free relay with a split time of 24.54 seconds.
The Stingrays’ 200 free relay, made up of Pollock, Megan Tatro, Jessica Sacco and Meghan Mietlicki, finished fifth overall and these same girls finished seventh in the 200 medley relay.
Other notable top 10 finishes were Anne Marie Aber with a 10th in the 200 freestyle in the 11-12 division and Jessica Sacco with a seventh overall finish in the 100 breaststroke in the 13-14 division.
Competing for the last time as a member of the Lockport Stingrays was Lyle Wagner in the 15-18 division. Wagner was 10th in the state in 100 yard butterfly. While not being the most vocal member on the team, Wagner’s work ethic in the pool was second to none and was a role model to the younger members on the team, his coaches said.
Last week, the Lockport Town and Country Club hosted the YMCA’s team banquet with more than 150 people attending showing their support for the team.
Earning team honors this year as being “Most Improved” were Madison Fragale and Jack Strong and the “Stingray Award” which is given to the swimmers who have shown the dedication, drive, determination, and sportsmanship to be the best were Megan Tatro and Aidan Morgan.
Thirty nine teams featuring more than 3,400 youth swimmers from across the state participated in this year’s state YMCA meet.