Undefeated going into 2019, the Liverpool boys swim team had a busy finish to 2018, even though its scheduled Dec. 22 meet at Watertown got pushed back to Jan. 12.
On Dec. 27, the Warriors’ Uriy Grabovyy took part in the Mexico Diving Invitational, finishing ninth in a field of 19 with 318.45 points. Jamesville-DeWitt/CBA’s Lucas Dekaney won with a state meet-qualifying total of 479.35 points.
Then, a day later, swimmers from Liverpool and Cicero-North Syracuse took part in the Gary Griffin Memorial Sprint Fund-Raiser at West Genesee, named in honor of the late coach and athletic director who founded and spear-headed the Weedsport program from 1968 to 2003.
For the Warriors, Curtis Merrick went 26.46 seconds in the 50-yard backstroke, second behind J-D/CBA’s Chris Bushnell (25.75), while Gabrovyy got sixth place in 31.11 seconds and Simon VanHoute (32.16) was ninth.
Griffin Merkling, in the 100 backstroke, was second in 59.25 seconds, with Jack Andrejko sixth (1:01.90). In winning the event,Bushnell qualified for the state meet with his time of 54.65 seconds..
Merkling, Merrick, Kyle Richardson and Brandon Nguyen were third in the 200 medley relay in 1:46.16 as B’ville (1:43.43) prevailed, the Bees ultimately taking first in seven of the 11 events.
And that included the 200 freestyle, where Liverpool got as close as it did to a victory all afternoon. Merrick, Merkling, Ngyuen and Julien Brownlow finished in 1:34.28, inches behind the 1:34.06 from B’ville.
On his own, Brownlow was fifth in the 50 freestyle in 23.87 seconds, just ahead of Merrick (24.08) in seventh place. Richardson was sixth in the 100 butterfly in 1:05.01, with Brayden Catalina ninth and Riad Latifagic 10th. Nguyen took seventh in the 50 breaststroke in 31.70 seconds.
C-NS had Logan Petralia get to sixth place in the 100 freestyle in 55.26 seconds, beating out Liverpool’s Brodie Powers (55.77) in seventh place and Evan Kline (56.57) in eighth place.
The Northstars also had Dillon Johnson finish ninth in the 100 backstroke in 1:06.79. Adam Rein and Dan Shaw were 11th and 12th, respectively, in the 50 breaststroke. Petralia, Bruce Hepel, Dom Bagozzi and Seaver Schultz were eighth (1:41.75) in the 200 freestyle relay.
Liverpool returned to dual meet action on Friday when it visited Auburn, and the Warriors, improving to 7-0 on the season, rolled to an 82-47 victory over the Maroons.
Brownlow improved to 23.30 seconds in the 50 freestyle, winning that event after Will Allen took the 200 freestyle in 2:00.52 as Nguyen rolled to first place in the 100 freestyle in 52.62 seconds, ahead of Kline (55.64) and Brodie Powers (56.83), with Ngyuen swimming the 100 breaststroke in 1:11.12.
Andrejko, in 1:04.01, held off Catalina (1:06.20) in the 100 butterfly, with Merkling going 5:21.06 in the 500 freestyle. A.J. Wagner stepped up to swim the 100 backstroke in 1:00.73, ahead of Merrick’s 1:02.92.
Nguyen, Brownlow, Andrejko and Caleb Netto won the 200 medley relay in 1:54.59. Jack Hyde and Ryan Wilhelm joined Andrejko and Nguyen to swim the 200 freestyle relay in 1:41.60.
Liverpool goes for eight in a row Tuesday against Fulton before West Genesee visits on Thursday night. C-NS goes to Mexico Tuesday and to Nottingham High School Friday to face the combined Syracuse City team.