Lansdale Catholic’s Fries, Yurasits ready for PIAA Class AA Championships

The breaststroke has always been Cassidy Fries’ event.

It was the event she gravitated to when she first joined her cousins in competitive swimming, growing up in the Upper Dublin summer program.

It was also the event that gave Fries her first taste of a championship race, as she remembers reaching A Championships several summers ago.

And it’s the event that has catapulted Fries back to the state championships, as she heads to Bucknell University this week even faster and more experienced than she was a year ago.

“Last year was an incredible experience making it as a freshman,” Fries said. “This year, I’m more focused on the actual swimming part rather than just the ‘wow.'”

The ‘wow factor’ is one of the aspects of states that makes swimmers and divers want to keep going back. And once again, Fries, along with diver Dylan Yurasits, will represent Lansdale Catholic out in Lewisburg, as they battle with the best in the state Friday and Saturday at the PIAA Class AA State Championships.

“I’m really excited to be going back,” said Yurasits, who will dive at La Salle University next year. “It’s my senior year, I want to go in there and do my best, and I feel pretty confident about what I’m doing.”

Yurasits’ confidence is bolstered by his states experience of a year ago, when his impressive performance earned him the silver medal.

“I put some new dives in, plus I love the boards out there,” he said. “It’s been a fun season, finishing out my senior year strong.”

Yurasits will get a practice in on Thursday and even get to sleep a couple extra hours before he hits the boards on Friday afternoon.

“(Winning gold) would be amazing. I would love it,” he said. “(Trinity’s Bradley Buchter) is exceptional at what he does.”

Yurasits and Buchter, the defending 2A champ, look to put on a pretty good show.

Fries, meanwhile, is aiming to keep up her fast pace.

“I was swimming my best times at midseason and then again (at districts),’ the sophomore said. “I like the way our district meet is set up because we have plenty of time to taper down.”

Back on Feb. 15, Fries raced to the District 12 title in the 100 breaststroke, touching in 1:08.91. It’s a time that has her seeded 20th for prelims. She’s hoping to crack the top 16 in the morning and qualify for the night swims for the first time.

“Looking to go fast in the morning and make it back,” she said.

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