Pictured: Senior co-captain Michael Flynn swims his way to victory in the 200 IM in 2:09.09 as Middletown coach Trevor Charles looks on.
By Andrew Lombardo
MIDDLETOWN – The Middletown High boys swim team routed division rival Plainville 98-85 Wednesday at Baldwin-Parmelee Pool. The win lifted the Blue Dragons to 5-6 with just five meets to go as they seek to extend their program streak of 41 straight winning seasons.
Middletown opened the meet with a win from their medley relay and never looked back, sweeping first place through their first nine events, including diving.
Senior captain Matthew Lombardo started with a win in the 200 freestyle, out-touching his Plainville counterpart with a time of 2:00.49. Fellow captain Michael Flynn followed up with a win in the 200 IM, and Andrew Strickland took the 50 freestyle to give the Blue Dragons a lead going into the diving portion of the meet.
After Nicole Tust edged out teammate Diego Carrillo by just two points to claim first place, Middletown held a 42-33 advantage.
The second half of the meet saw more of the same dominance from the Blue Dragons, as they won the next four events.
Flynn once again took first, winning the 100 butterfly in easy fashion, finishing two seconds ahead of Joseph Michalic. Lombardo also saw himself notch another win, this time in the 500 freestyle.
The most exciting race, however, was the 100 freestyle, where teammates Trevor Drescher and Seth Latronica battled for four laps, with Drescher ultimately beating his teammate to the wall with a time of 56.22, compared to Latronica’s 56.59.
After winning the 200 Freestyle Relay Middletown had all but secured the win and went unofficial in scoring two events later, before the last relay.
Coach Trevor Charles was upbeat about his team’s performance, highlighting the depth that had come along since the beginning of the season.
“At the beginning of the season we were concerned about how many guys could step up,” he said. “Without too many experienced kids we were worried if we would even get a winning season, but to their credit we have had a number of guys step up and fill those roles.
“We have a really strong sophomore class, particularly Andrew Strickland and Zach Krantz, as well as junior Trevor Drescher, that has come along well,” Charles said. “We have a lot of other guys, a number of sophomores and freshmen that have shown potential and signs that they could be important contributors not only this season, but in the future.”
Flynn and Lombardo both reiterated the team’s desire to have another winning season streak, in addition to their personal goals.
“Personally, I want to get under five minutes in my 500 free,” Lombardo said. “But as a team, we have had 40 years of winning seasons so we want to keep that streak going.”
Flynn said as much, adding, “I want to have a winning season and see all of the seniors make it to states. We are really keeping up the intensity and enthusiasm, making sure all the underclassmen are involved and working hard in practice. We have also done a great job keeping ourselves accountable to each other and pushing each other to get faster.”
The Blue Dragons swim against Platt on Friday. Their next home meet is Feb. 14 against Southington.
Results (Top 3 only):
200 Medley Relay: 1. Middletown (Michael Flynn, Seth Latronica, Kyle Heidorn, Andrew Strickland), 1:50.34; 2. Plainville, 1:52.19; 3. Middletown, 1:56.99.
200 Freestyle: 1. Matthew Lombardo (M), 2:00.49; 2. Nathan Lyman (P), 2:00.73; 3. Colin Blake (P), 2:01.47.
200 IM: 1. Michael Flynn (M), 2:09.09; 2. Brandon Paznokas (P), 2:22.37; 3. Spencer Michalek (P), 2:22.41.
50 Freestyle: 1. Andrew Strickland (M), 24.19; 2. Joseph Michalic (P), 24.98; 3. Chris St. Lawrence (P), 25.72.
1 Meter Diving: 1. Nicole Tust (M), 190.20; 2. Diego Carrillo (M), 188.75; 3. Zach Dery (P), 145.50.
100 Butterfly: 1. Michael Flynn (M), 58.81; 2. Joseph Michalic (P), 1:00.94; 3. Zach Krantz (M), 1:01.50.
100 Freestyle: 1. Trevor Drescher (M), 56.22; 2. Seth Latronica (M), 56.59; 3. Brady Stevens (P), 58.96.
500 Freestyle: 1. Matthew Lombardo (M), 5:26.56; 2. Nathan Lyman (P), 5:27.36; 3. Kyle Heidorn (M), 5:43.09.
200 Freestyle Relay: 1. Middletown (Strickland, Drescher, Lombardo, Flynn), 1:38.78; 2. Plainville, 1:45.11; 3. Middletown, 1:50.04.
100 Backstroke: 1. Brandon Paznokas (P), 1:03.80; 2. Brady Stevens (P), 1:07.71; 3. Seth Latronica (M), 1:10.55.
100 Breastroke: 1. Matt Lagassey (P), 1:10.61; 2. Nick Turri (M), 1:11.17; 3. Andrew Strickland (M), 1:11.49.
400 Freestyle Relay: 1. Middletown (Drescher, Latronica, Heidorn, Lombardo), 3:50.06; 2. Plainville, 4:00.63; 3. Middletown, 4:07.36.