By Reach for the Wall Staff
(lead photo courtesy NCAP Facebook page)
Saturday night March 19 the 20th NCSA Junior Nationals concluded with a PVS team on the top of the podium. This year it was Nation’s Capital (NCAP) with their team depth producing 1,500 total points 740 for the Women (Overall 2nd place) and 760 for the men (Overall 1st place). Rockville Montgomery (RMSC) placed 4th overall with 1091.5 points, 438.5 for the Women (9th) and 653 for the men (3rd). Arlington Aquatic (AAC) was the next highest team finisher, placing 8th overall, 183 points for the women (16th) and 566 for the men (4th). Machine Aquatics also made the top 25 with 485 points, good enough for 16th. Their women scored 120 points (23rd) and their men 365 (10th). All Star Aquatics finished with 35 total points, good for 38th overall, York Swim Club was the other PVS team in attendance but did not register any points.
In the individual tally of top 25 point scorers, Camille Spink (NCAP) had the highest finish for the area women, finishing in 5th in the high point tally with 182 individual points. Joining Camille in the high point race were her teammates Tatum Wall (128 pts, 11th overall), Jordan Durocher (87 points, 22nd overall). Landon Gentry was 2nd in the high point race for the men amassing 164 individual points, he was joined by Jordan Kelly (90 points, 20th overall) and Kris Lawson (76 points, 24th overall). Other area swimmers that cracked the top 25 individual point scorers were Madison Smith from RMSC, who was a double winner, taking the title in the 500 and 1650 freestyle events, and second place in the 1000 freestyle! She ended the meet scoring 106 total points, good for 17th overall. Her teammate Toby Barnett finished 14th overall with 109 individual points, posting 2nd place finishes in both the 200 Breaststroke and 400 IM! JT Ewing (102.5, 17th overall) and Nolen Dunkel (80.5, 23rd overall) from Arlington Aquatics were the other two individual swimmers that made the top 25 in the high point listing.
Over the 5-day event, several meet records were broken, it all started with the Men’s 100 Freestyle where Hudson Williams from New Albany Aquatics set the new mark at 43.32. That same evening in finals, the Elmbrook Swim Club women set the 200 medley relay mark blazing to a 1:36.77, almost a full second under the old record and 3.5 seconds ahead of the field! For the remainder of the amazing swims on Day 1, SwimSwam Day 1 recap.
The next meet record went down in the women’s 200 butterfly when Tess Howley (Long Island Aquatic Club) blasted a 1:52.88, besting the old record held by Janet Hu (NCAP). In the women’s 50 backstroke, Levenia Sim (TNT Swimming) broke her own meet record, touching in 23.95 just ahead of Elmbrook swimmer Margaret Wanezek who finished in 24.02. in the next race, Scotty Buff (Greater Toledo) also set a meet record going 21.23! Next up was Wildcat Aquatics’ Kaelyn Gridley, winning the 200 breast in 2:08.30, finishing under the old meet record of 2:09.26, set by Anna Keating (Machine) in 2019. SwimSwam Day 2 recap.
The records kept coming through the 3rd night of finals & it was with the first event- women’s 400 IM. Lilla Bognar (Team Greenville)dropped 5 seconds off her prelim swim and posted a time of 4:05.50 which was 2 seconds clear of the prior record set by Becca Mann (Clearwater Aquatic Team). The Elmbrook women were at it again as their 200 Free Relay took down another meet record in 1:29.43, breaking the 2015 meet record of 1:30.60, previously held by the Aquajets. SwimSwam Day 3 recap.
Day 4 saw another blazing finals, where3 4 of the 6 races resulted in a new meet record. While not a record performance, Madison Smith (RMSC) got her first win of the meet, touching first in the 500 Free in 4:44.62, a lifetime best by over 3 seconds! Lucy Thomas (Elmbrook) got things rolling in the 100 breaststroke, winning in 58.93, her second win of the meet as she won the 50 breaststroke on Day 1. Scotty Buff (GTAC) continued his great meet by winning the 100 butterfly in meet record time 45.40, with Landon Gentry (NCAP) finishing 2nd in 46.76. The Elmbrook women did just enough to get their names on the record board for the 400 Free relay, each of them splitting under 50 seconds to finish in 3:17.35, under the old record of 3:17.70 set in 2019 by NCAP. With the venue still buzzing, the New Albany Aquatic Club, anchored by 100 Free champ Hudson Williams, splitting a 42.90, touched the wall in 2:56.34, eclipsing the old standard set by NCAP in 2015 (2:56.98). SwimSwam Day 4 recap.
Typically on the 5th day of a championship meet you get an array of performances from the top swimmers as they are usually at the tail end of 10+ swims. This week was no different as the swims during prelims were sluggish. Scotty Buff (GTAC) turned that around quickly in finals (and we mean he was very quick!) by winning the 50 butterfly and setting a new meet record in 20.54! Touching 2nd was Landon Gentry (NCAP) in 21.13, which is his best best over a second! Scotty Buff did it gain in the 50 Free as in prelims he was the only qualifier under 20 seconds (19.95). He took it a step further in finals and swam a blazing 19.56, surpassing the prior meet record of 19.63 that was set in 2002 by Michael Cavic. The Elmbrook women finished the meet as they started…with a new relay record! The team of Maggie Wanezek , Lucy Thomas , Campbell Stoll, and Abby Wanezek dipped 2 seconds under the old record set last year by Elmbrook, touching in 3:32.19 (7 seconds ahead of 2nd place)! SwimSwam Day 5 recap.
Congratulations to all the PVS athletes and officials that made the trip to Orlando and made this a great week of competition!