Feb 15, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
In the longest races, West Genesee boys swimming standout Collin Zapisek made the most notable impressions during Thursday night’s Section III Class A championship meet at Rome Free Academy.
Claiming both the 200 and 500-yard freestyle events, Zapisek posted the fastest times of the season in Central New York in both contests and will be a force during the March 1-2 state championships at Webster Schroeder High School near Rochester.
Years of having the event at Nottingham High School’s Max Newman Pool changed when Section III officials, concerned with injuries caused by loose bulkheads in the girls sectional meet last fall, moved the boys championships to various venues – Class A and B to RFA, Class C to New Hartford – and the overall championships to Hamilton College.
Zapisek earned his first victory in the 200 freestyle, blazing to a time of one minute, 43.87 seconds, and needing that sort of time to hold off CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt star Cole Speidel, who was second in 1:44.98.
Then, in the 500 freestyle, he got away and, in 4:46.33, beat another CBA/J-D swimmer, Cory Knapp (4:56.67), by more than 10 seconds, again with a time fast enough to advance to the state meet.
All of this was part of an effort where the Wildcats picked up 249.50 points to finish third in a 12-team Class A sectional field. Liverpool, who won seven of 11 events, prevailed with 428 points as Watertown (293.5 points) got the runner-up spot.
Jake Mullett had strong efforts in two races, as he finished third in the 200 individual medley in 2:02.48, where Watertown’s Mike Netto prevailed (1:59.78), and later got another third-place showing in the 100 breaststroke in 1:03.22 as Liverpool’s Garrett Clarke (56.91 seconds) got the top spot.
Team-wise, WG’s quartet of Zapisek, Mullett, Matt O’Donnell and Dave Whiting would push hard to win the 400 freestyle relay, and while they finished second to Liverpool (3:15.13), the Wildcats’ time of 3:17.84 was good enough to qualify for the state meet since 3:18.87 or less was required.
During the 200 medley relay, that same quartet – Zapisek, Mullett, O’Donnell and Whiting – took third place in 1:39.62, not far behind Liverpool’s winning time of 1:37.90, with Watertown (1:38.60) second. Again, the Wildcats were fast enough (1:40.67 was the standard) to earn a state meet berth to join the Warriors and Cyclones.
When the top swimmers gathered Saturday at Hamilton for the state qualifier, WG, led again by Zapisek, picked up 212 points, again third behind Liverpool (352 points) and Watertown (275 points0.
In the 200 freestyle, Zapisek was a bit slower, at 1:44.38, but still prevailed over Speidel (1:47.35) by nearly three seconds. And in the 500 freestyle, Zapisek nearly matched his time of two days before, winning in 4:46.76 as Matt Leverich (Skaneateles) was second in 4:53.90.
O’Donnell earned a berth in the state meet when he finished second in the 100 butterfly in 53.41 seconds behind Speidel (51.75) as Whiting was fifth in 55.01 seconds. O’Donnell also got sixth in the 100 backstroke (58.23 seconds) as Mullett took third place in the 200 IM (2:02.71) and also was third (1:01.20) in the 100 breaststroke.
Whiting, Mullett, O’Donnell and Zapisek again were quick in the 400 freestyle relay, improving by more than a second, to 3:16.12, but still finishing second to Liverpool (3:14.63). That same quartet did a bit better in the 200 medley relay than on Thursday, finishing in 1:39.37 for third place, just behind Watertown (1:39.23) as, again, Liverpool (1:37.95) was in front.