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Conard Wins CCC West Swimming and Diving Conference Championship

CCC West Champions – Conard Swimming and Diving team. Courtesy photo

With a win over West Hartford crosstown rival Hall on Tuesday night at Cornerstone Aquatics Center, Conard secured the CCC West title.

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Heading into Tuesday night’s final meet of the season the Chieftains (12-1) and Warriors (8-4) were both 4-0 in the CCC West and competing for the conference title, and eight first-place finishes in the 12 events were enough to propel the Chieftains to a 93-87 win and their first CCC West title since the 2014-2015 season.

Senior Alex Chernysh notched two of the Chieftains eight first-place finishes – in the 200 IM (2:02.39) and 100 Backstroke (54.50) – while freshman Charlie Krajc won the 200 Freestyle (1:53.08), and junior Colby Roy won the 100 Breaststroke (1:06.25).

Conard’s divers took the top three spots led by junior Ben Giroux (203.40), senior captain Nathan Rosado (174.30), and senior Zach Lagana (144.05).

Conard’s 200 Medley (Chernysh, Roy, Julian Flores, Ben Arky), 200 Freestyle (Auston Comrie, Flores, Krajc, Arky) and 400 Freestyle Relays (Krajc, Comrie, Held, Chernysh) rounded out the first place finishes.

Hall senior captain Jack Hosey claimed the top spots in both the 50 Freestyle (22.75) and 100 Freestyle (49.61), junior Ian Harker won the 100 Butterfly (56.51) in a come-from-behind race, and sophomore Conner Skarzynski finished first in the 500 Freestyle (5:08.00).

Conard took an early lead as senior Giovanni Laquintana and senior captain Rory Williams backed up Krajc’s first place finish in the 200 Freestyle, finishing third and fourth respectively. Conard and Hall split the 200 Individual Medley, with Chernysh and Flores finishing first and fourth and Hall’s Harker, Mitchell Baboff, and Jack Russo combining for second, third, and fifth place points.

Conard also outscored Hall in the 50 Freestyle with Arky, Comrie and Roy combining for a 2-3-4 finish. Coming out of diving Conard led 51-27.

Conard’s depth was on display again during the back half of the meet with Flores, Krajc, and senior captain Alex Held taking second, third and fourth in the 100 Butterfly; Arky, Comrie, and Laquintana finishing second, third, and fourth in the 100 Freestyle; and senior captain Matt Remigino, Liam Switzer, and Nate Davison also securing second, third, and fourth in the 500 Freestyle.

Hall outscored Conard in the 100 Backstroke with Patrick Keith, Ryan Arnold, and Kobe Dominguez finishing second, third, and fourth, but Conard’s 1-3-5 finish by Roy, Lenny Belyaev, and Justice Seymour in the 100 Breaststroke secured the Chieftain’s victory.

Conard coach Jennifer Pollard was very happy with how her team performed. After the meet Pollard said, “The team did very well tonight. On paper I knew we had the edge, but I told my team before the meet that the normal rules don’t apply at the Conard-Hall meet because it pushes everyone to levels they didn’t think were possible and you often see incredible times from people you wouldn’t expect. Tonight was no exception and both teams had really good swims and I’m glad we were able to send our seniors off with a CCC West title.”

Swimmers from both schools will move on to the Class L State Trials meet on Saturday, March 10 at East Hartford High School, while Conard’s divers will compete in the Class L State Trials/Finals meet on Thursday, March 8 at Middletown High School.

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