By Contributor: Jim Riley
The Southbridge Seals welcomed the Meadowbrook Makos June 30 in their first meeting since 2016. This was the second week in a row that Southbridge swam up a division against a larger team.
The Seals took an early lead winning seven of the first 11 relay events. The Makos battled back during the freestyle events and the two teams traded the lead throughout the meet. Unlike their last meeting when the Makos defeated the Seals by more than 800 points, this one was a nail biter that was not decided until the final relays of the day. While the Seals held out hope for the upset, the Makos edged them out by a mere 136 points.
The Seals had 24 swimmers record 52 Prince William Swim League “Top 25 Times” for the week. For the first time in team history, the Seals had multiple swimmers record the fastest time in the county in an event. Caila Sullivan recorded the fastest time in the league in the Girls 11-12 50M Back, while Kayley Benway recorded the fastest time in the county in two events, Girls 11-12 50M Free and 50M Fly.
Southbridge continued their all out assault on the team’s record boards breaking 11 individual and five relay records including Arielle Grabowski (Girls 9-10) 100M IM; Owen Howery (Boys 13-14) 100M IM and 50M Breast; Hunter Howery (Boys 15-18) 100M IM and 50M Back; Ainsley Juhlin (Girls 15-18) 50M Back; Jordan Mumford (Girls 15-18) 50M Fly; Patrick Kayne (Boys 15-18) 50M Free, which was the oldest team record still on the books, and 50M Back; Sam Kayne (Girls 13-14) 50M Breast; Kayley Benway (Girls 11-12) 50M Free; Boys 15-18 Free and Medley Relays; Girls 13-14 Medley Relay;
Boys 13-14 Medley Relay; and Boys 11-12 Free Relay.
“All of the kids showed up and swam their hearts out and it was evident in the water today,” Seals Head Coach Greg Giovinazzo said. “Their willingness and lack of fear to try new events is really inspiring to me.”
The Seals are the official swim team of Southbridge on the Potomac located in Southbridge, Va., and includes swimmers from the Southbridge, Potomac Shores and other surrounding communities in southeastern Prince William County. This year, the Seals have moved up into the PWSL’s Black Division and will face off against Old Bridge and Stonewall Park for the division championship July 28 at Stonewall Park. Founded in 2009, they have won division championships in 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2016.