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Foothill League swimming: Don’t forget the Cents

Saugus girls finally get the Vikes; Valencia’s boys, though, win their half of meet

Posted: April 12, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: April 12, 2012 1:55 a.m.

The Saugus girls swim team saw an opportunity to solidify its position as a contender in the Foothill League race on Wednesday at the Santa Clarita Aquatic Center.

Standing in its way, though, was a Valencia team that had given it fits for years, as the Centurions had never defeated the Vikings in four years under current head coach Vicky Donnelly.

That all changed this time around, though, as the Centurions won eight of 11 events and defeated the Vikings 92-74.

“My girls at the beginning, we said ‘In four years it’s your time to do this,’” Donnelly said. “‘We’ve never been able to beat them and it’s our time.’”

Things were different on the boys side, though, with the Vikings running away with a 122-75 victory.

But the story was the girls, as Valencia (5-1 overall, 2-1 Foothill League) lost a league dual meet to a team other than Hart for the first time in four years, according to Valencia head coach Mike Bechtholdt.

The Saugus girls (6-0, 3-0) were impressive up and down the roster, with Katy Sonksen winning both the 200-yard freestyle race and 500 free.

Freshman Abbey Weitzeil won the 50 free in 23.68 seconds and moved from her usual 100-free event to the 100 butterfly, and won the event with a time of 59.33.

“We tried a couple different things and it ended up working in our favor,” Donnelly said of the changes.

Also impressive for Saugus was Kristin Threw, who was questionable for the meet.

Threw helped the Centurions to victories in both the 200-yard medley relay in one minute, 53.84 seconds and the 200-free relay in 1:46.14.

The Vikings didn’t lay down without a fight, though.

Catie Anderson won the 100-yard backstroke in 1:02.73 and Sophie Fiscella won the 100 free in 56.22.

The pair also combined to help Valencia close out the meet with a victory in the 400-free relay in 3:51.80, along with teammates Rebekah Haw and Maliah Grim.

But all in all, the Vikings were expecting a different result from a meet that could go a long way to determining final placement in the league.

“They got up on us pretty early with first and second in the (200-yard relay) — I thought it would be closer than it was,” Bechtholdt said.

“(Saugus) did great and our team underperformed,” he said. “I don’t know if it would have made a difference, though.”

Things were very different on the boys side, however, where Valencia (5-1, 3-0) won early and often, en route to the dominant victory.

The Vikings won nine events on the day, including two victories from Jessie Kim in the 200-yard individual medley (2:04.03) and 100-yard backstroke (57.79).

Nelson Guzman added victories in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 56.80 and 500 free in 5:00.51.

Still, like the girls team, Bechtholdt didn’t think the boys team lived up to its potential.

“I’m seeing improvement in things like how they’re performing, but not in times right now because they’re tired,” he said. “We didn’t have a lot of best times today.”

Saugus (4-2, 2-1) saw wins from Jonathan Morsch in the 200 free (1:48.34) and 100 free (50.35), but was never able to keep it close with the Vikings.

The story, though, was the Saugus girls team, which will enter its meet Wednesday against Hart at 3 p.m. on a high.

“I hope this carries on to Hart next week and the rest of league,” Donnelly said. “And carries on our momentum.”



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