The Caesar Rodney girls’ swim team eked out a two-point, 373-371, victory over Cape in the Henlopen Conference Championships Feb. 8, while the Riders boys’ squad dominated the field, taking a 388-308.5 win over second-place Sussex Academy.
Sussex Academy placed third in the girls’ competition with 347 followed by Sussex Tech in fourth with 270 and Sussex Central in fifth with 181.
Indian River took third for the boys with 308 points, while Sussex Tech placed fourth with 265 and Cape Henlopen was fifth with 229.5.
The Lady Vikings went into the last event, the 400 free relay, up by eight points, looking for their eighth straight Henlopen Conference Championship. Caesar Rodney won the event with a time of 3:47.16, garnering 40 points. Cape was awarded 30 for placing fourth.
“I’m really proud of my swim team,” said Cape coach Bill Geppert. “Almost all of them swam personal-best times. They also displayed great sportsmanship afterward, congratulating CR on their wins. We almost won our eighth title on the girls’ side, losing by only two points out of the 2,000 points possible in the meet. Our ladies accepted this tough loss with dignity and grace, and I couldn't be more proud of their character. If anything, it will serve as motivation for next season.
“Aya Daisey is only 0.2 seconds from breaking our 50 free record that has been held since 2009. Our seniors swam great in their last time in the pool. Gianna Vayda showed a lot of heart, gutting out her two events with injured shoulders. Anna Stancofski and Sky Dunmyer both scored valuable points in the butterfly. The unsung hero, though, goes to Amaya Daisey who swam events she normally doesn't in order to give us a chance to win. She personifies the word “team” - what a great young lady!
“On our boys’ side, senior Tanner Dade finished his career by posting personal bests in the fly and back. The boys showed heart and promise for next season. I know we have states coming up, but I can't wait until next year already.”
Sussex Academy head coach Tom Martiner was voted both the conference girls’ and boys’ Coach of the Year.
“The talent level of all swimmers has increased tremendously, leading to great competition throughout the conference meet,” said Martiner. “It’s a great opportunity for the swimmers to lay it on the line and show how good they are.”
Ethan Herring of Caesar Rodney was voted the Vince Morris Outstanding Boys’ Swimmer while the Riders’ Danielle Stewart was voted the Vince Morris Outstanding Girls’ Swimmer.
Caesar Rodney was presented the regular-season boys’ and girls’ Northern Division championship trophy, while the Sussex Academy boys and girls were presented the regular-season Southern Division trophy.
The DIAA Swimming championships will begin Tuesday, Feb. 25, at the University of Delaware.