Greenwich girls swimming and diving team takes fifth at FCIAC meet

Greenwich High’s Kelly Montesi competes in the 200-yard individual medley.  — Scott Mullin

Greenwich High’s Kelly Montesi competes in the 200-yard individual medley. — Scott Mullin

Despite competing with a plethora of younger athletes, Greenwich High School fared well at last week’s Fairfield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference swim championships.

Held once again at the GHS pool, the Cardinals finished the championships fifth overall with 239 points and were just under 30 points ahead of a Ridgefield team that finished sixth with 210 points.

Once again, it was Darien High School that stole the show, as the Blue Wave claimed the FCIAC hardware with 356 points. In a distant second place was New Canaan, as the Rams finished with 301.50 points.

The battle for the bronze was between Wilton and Staples high schools, however it was the Warriors that came away with third, finishing with 258 points, one point ahead of the Wreckers.

“I thought we did pretty well tonight,” Greenwich High School head coach Lorraine Najam said. “We are swimming right at our best times for the season and that’s exactly where we want to be right now. I felt like we took out our races hard and went out and raced. I’m really looking forward to next week.”

Leading the way for Greenwich High were the duo of freshman Kelly Montesi and junior Brooke Collins. In the 200-yard individual medley, Montesi took sixth place overall with a time of 2:14.19. She fared one place better in the 100-yard butterfly, as Montesi touched the wall with a time of 1:00.42.

Not to be outdone was Collins, as the junior finished fifth in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:10.20. Competing in the 200-yard individual medley, Collins grabbed seventh place overall with a time of 2:14.67.

Senior Isobel Walker also had a stellar outing during the FCIAC championship meet. In the fastest event of the day, the 50-yard freestyle, Walker finished the event sixth overall, netting a time of 25.26 seconds. A few events later, Walker was back in the pool for the 100-yard backstroke and took home eighth place overall with a time of 1:03.66.

“I am really happy with how we did, especially considering we didn’t taper at all,” Walker said. “A lot of the teams rest for this meet and we are in the middle of training. Considering that, I am very happy with how we did. We have such a young team and a lot of freshmen. Our team doesn’t have a lot of experience and a lot of the teams here does, I think we did really well and I’m happy.”

Greenwich diver Ines Villemure competes during a recent meet. — Scott Mullin photo

Greenwich diver Ines Villemure competes during a recent meet. — Scott Mullin photo

Sophia Jahan also added two top 10 finishes during the conference meet. In the 200-yard freestyle, Jahan, a freshman, took home seventh overall with a time of 2:00.29. During the 100-yard freestyle event, Jahan had a stellar swim and finished eighth overall with a time of 55.86.

“I think we did really well, considering all the other teams were training for this meet and we are training for the class LL meet,” Jahan said. “We are definitely going to work on everything and trying to get our times down as much as we can. FCIACs was good for us because how we have that experience and going to the class LL meet, we know what we are going up against and will do well hopefully.”

When it came to diving, Big Red was paced by senior Ines Villemure. Against some of the toughest competition she faced to date, the GHS senior captain finished the diving portion of the FCIAC finals sixth overall, netting 363.80 points. Villemure just missed out on a top five finish, as New Canaan’s Anne Farley netted 365.65 points.

“Three people scored and one was a freshman and another was a sophomore,” Najam said. “They did a great job. We came in with a lot of confidence, knowing how well they did today. I was so proud with how Ines practiced hard the last week before FCIACs. It was her best score ever and she’s really looking forward to the class LL meet.”

Other swimmers also took home a top 10 finish at FCIACs.

Freshman Ainsleigh Winget grabbed eighth place overall in the 50-yard freestyle, posting a time of 25.43, while teammate Patty Kohn, a senior, competed in the longest event of the day, the 500-yard freestyle, and touched the wall 10th overall with a time of 5:26.46.

Riley Ennis also took home 10th place, competing in the 100-yard breaststroke and taking home a time of 1:11.69.

“I thought Patty had a great swim in the 500-free and it was on her best time,” Najam said. “Kelly Montesi was a medalist in both her events and is only a freshman, so there’s a lot to be excited about there. Our relays all did great and were right on our best times this season. We have a lot of freshmen in the relays and that’s great for the future. The best part is that they are swimming and competing right now and that’s fantastic. I am really pleased with a lot of swims today.”

The Lady Cardinals also had three relay teams finish the top eight during FCIACs.

Big Red’s best group was in the 200-yard freestyle relay. The team of Walker, Montesi, Winget and Jahan finished with the bronze, touching the wall with a time of 1:41.31.

During the first event of the championships, the 200-yard medley relay, the foursome of Walker, Collins, Montesi and freshman Taylor Schinto finished sixth overall with a time of 1:53.46 and edged out Wilton, who finished seventh with a time of 1:54.92.

In the 400-yard freestyle relay, Greenwich’s Winget, Ennis, Jahan and freshman Julia Merrill ended the meet with a eighth place finish and a time of 3:48.63.

“I think it’s great to have this kind of meet before our other meets that we focus on more, whether it’s the class LL meet or Opens,” Walker said. “This meet prepares us for the intensity that there is in the state meets. FCIACs will help us get used to big meets we will play next.”

With the FCIAC finals in the books, the Cardinals will set their eyes on the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference class LL tournament. Tomorrow afternoon, the GHS diving team will head up to Bulkley High School for competition in the class LL diving championships. The meet gets underway at 4:30 p.m.

On Wednesday, Big Red will head up to Middletown and compete at the Wesleyan University pool at 7 p.m.

“With the times we were swimming today and how we were swimming our races, I feel like we are ready,” Najam said. “We just need some rest.”

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