Sports: Record Breaking Seniors Night As Boys’ Swimming Takes Winning Record to Leagues

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Photo: Belmont’s record-breaking relay team; Owen Luo, Sam Thompson, Will Findlay and Rickey Ye.

It was a special Seniors Night at the Higginbottom Pool on Wednesday, Jan 25. The Belmont High Boys’ Swim squad praised their graduating teammates for their dedication and leadership with words, balloons and a few tears.

But it wasn’t simply the heartfelt feelings that perirated the pool which made the event significant. The final dual meet of the 2016-17 season saw the boys’ set a new standard for success for the program. Under first-year head coach James Saidnawey, the team finished with a 6-3 record, a marker that hasn’t been matched for a good number of years.

“A great first year. I had a lot of fun. We grew a lot as a team from the beginning to now,” said Head Coach James Saidnawey.

And it was the team’s outstanding 200-yard freestyle relay that put an exclamation mark on the night as the quartet of sophomores Rickey Ye and Sam Thompson, junior Will Findlay and senior Owen Luo broke the 13-year-old pool record by two seconds and the varsity best by a tenth of a second.

“Speaking for myself and my teammates, I grew up swimming in this pool and I looked at the [record] board. It’s a really great thing to be on that board,” said Findlay who anchored the team home in 1 minute, 35.25 seconds.

The 200 relay along with the medley relay and two individual swimmer – Thompson in the 50 free style sprint and junior Luc Durand in the 100 butterfly – have qualified on time for the Division 2 state meet in February and will be leading the team into next week’s Middlesex League meeting with a solid chance of capturing the league championship flag for the first time since … well, let’s just say a long time. 

Wednesday meet against Burlington was a run away as the Marauders’ experience and power bested the visitors. Belmont started off the blocks in fine fashion going 1-2-3 in the initial three events; the medley relay, 200 free (Damien Autissier, 2:02.44) and 200 individual medley (Ye, 2:18.60). Ye would come back for the 100 breast victory in 1:11.03.

Both Thompson and Findlay dipped under 24 seconds in the 50 and Durand broke a minute in his speciality, the 100 fly (59.75) while taking the 100 back in 1:01.32. Autissier powered to the 500 free victory, nearly lapping the field in 5.23.43.

Belmont will head off to the league meet at Bentley University next Thursday looking to keep their hot streak going and hoping that powerhouse Lexington will lose a few points here and there to good swimmers on weaker teams.

“If we work hard, we have the boys who can bring home the title,” said Findlay.

It was a special Seniors Night at the Higginbottom Pool on Wednesday, Jan 25. The Belmont High Boys’ Swim Squad praised their graduating teammates for their dedication and leadership with words, balloons and a few tears.

But it wasn’t simply the genuine feelings that filled the pool which made the event significant. The final dual meet of the 2016-17 season saw the Boys’ set a new standard for success for the program. Under first-year head coach James Saidnawey, the team finished with a 6-3 record, a marker that hasn’t been matched by a good number of years.

“A great first year. I had a lot of fun. We grew a lot as a team from the beginning to now,” said Head Coach James Saidnawey.

And it was the team’s outstanding 200-yard freestyle relay that put an exclamation mark on the night as the quartet of sophomores Rickey Ye and Sam Thompson, junior Will Findlay and senior Owen Luo broke the 13-year-old pool record by two seconds and the varsity best by a tenth of a second.

“Speaking for myself and my teammates, I grew up swimming in this pool and I looked at the [record] board. It’s a really great thing to be on that board,” said Findlay who anchored the team home in 1 minute, 35.25 seconds.

The 200 relay along with the medley relay and two individual swimmer – Thompson in the 50 freestyle sprint and junior Luc Durand in the 100 butterfly – have qualified for time for the Division 2 state meet in February and will be leading the team into next week’s Middlesex League meeting with a solid chance of capturing the league championship flag for the first time since … well, let’s just say a long time.

Wednesday meet against Burlington was a run away as the Marauders’ experience and power bested the visitors. Belmont started off the blocks in fine fashion going 1-2-3 in the initial three events; the medley relay, 200 free (Damien Autissier, 2:02.44) and 200 individual medley (Ye, 2:18.60). Ye would come back for the 100 breast victory in 1:11.03.

Both Thompson and Findlay dipped under 24 seconds in the 50 and Durand broke a minute in his specialty, the 100 fly (59.75) while taking the 100 back in 1:01.32. Autissier powered to the 500 free victory, nearly lapping the field in 5.23.43.

Belmont will head off to the league meet at Bentley University next Thursday looking to keep their hot streak going and hoping that powerhouse Lexington will lose a few points here and there to good swimmers on weaker teams.

“If we work hard, we have the boys who can bring home the title,” said Findlay.

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