As a whole, the West Genesee boys swim team made an impressive showing during Thursday’s Section III Class A championships at Nottingham High School, but Ryan Hagadorn made sure the occasion was particularly memorable.
Hagadorn’s victory in the 100-yard breaststroke, and his qualifying for the March 3-4 state championships at Long Island’s Nassau Aquatic Center, helped push the Wildcats to a fourth-place team finish behind Watertown, Liverpool and Jamesville-DeWitt/CBA.
Hagadorn entered the sectional meet as the second seed in the 100 breaststroke behind J-D/CBA’s Spencer Schultz with a season-best time of one minute, 3.07 seconds.
However, in the final, Hagadorn inched ahead in the last 50 yards and, in 1:00.02, beat the state qualifying standard (1:01.20) by more than a second. Spencer Schultz finished third in 1:01.44 as Baldwinsville’s Nick Schultz rose to second place in 1:01.25. The Wildcats’ Zac Zoanetti finished eighth in 1:05.72.
From a team standpoint, WG picked up 264 points, not far from J-D/CBA’s third-place total of 294 points. Watertown, with 354.5 points, won two late relays to edge Liverpool (345.5 points) for the sectional team title.
In the 50 freestyle, Nate Gdula finished second in 22.34 seconds, just off the state qualifying standard (22.19 seconds) and well back of Watertown’s Maclean Crossley, who broke Drake Becksted’s five-year-old sectional record by winning in 20.37 seconds. Evan Tuthill was sixth in 23.13 seconds and Hagadorn (23.29 seconds) was seventh.
Moving to the 100 freestyle, Gdula went 49.58 seconds and got third place, again with Crossley (45.67 seconds) on top as Tuthill made his way to sixth place in 50.59 seconds.
WG nearly qualified for the state meet in the opening race, the 200 medley relay, where Hagadorn, Gdula, Tuthill and Brian Salmons finished third in 1:41.39, just below the 1:40.67 needed to advance. A second Wildcats team of Zoanetti, Mike Whitney, Zac Walker and Matt Shields were 11th in 1:52.76.
In the 200 freestyle relay, Tuthill, Gdula, Hagadorn and Matt Shoults paired up to get fourth place in 1:31.20. Shoults finished ninth in the 200 freestyle, winning his heat with a time of 1:55.25 as Cameron Chao (2:01.70) was 17th. In the 400 freestyle relay, Chao, Shoults, Salmons and Ryan McMahon were 10th in 3:42.20 as
Salmons needed 1:01.06 to finish eighth in the 100 backstroke as Keegan Schauron was 16th in 1:04.13. Shoults also was 13th in the 500 freeestyle in 5:28.71, with Ryan McMahon 17th (5:32.72). Alex Shuron went 2:23.96 to finish 17th in the 200 individual medley and was 19th (1:04.48) in the 100 butterfly.
Back on Feb. 11, Peter Bowman contended for the sectional Class A diving title, finishing second with 435.15 points behind J-D/CBA’s Ryan Evans (474.30 points). Also for the Wildcats, David Puma was sixth, with 342.65 points, with Justin Byrne seventh (339.50 points) and Adriel Shoeck eighth with 323.85 points.