Yacopino sets pool diving record, North Penn sweeps Hatboro-Horsham

TOWAMENCIN — North Penn came bursting out of a tough winter break and began its Suburban One League Continental Conference schedule in impressive fashion.

“It was a really good way to start,’ said Knights senior Alexander Holland, winner of the 200-yard intermediate medley on Tuesday against Hatboro-Horsham. “It was a really hard winter break — we’re all really tired, but it was a good way to start racing again.’

Holland’s win in the IM helped propell the Knights to a 98-82 victory over the Hatters, and the Maidens, led by diver Marie Yacopino’s pool-record score of 339.25, pushed to a 99-81 win over Hatboro in a solid showing at the Rick Carroll Natatorium.

“The tough one is always coming off the winter break, just to see where we are, and I think they swam pretty well,’ said Maidens coach Matt Weiser, whose team, along with the Knights, improved to a perfect 4-0 on the season. “We’re in a good place. Hatboro’s a good team and they have some solid swimmers and a great coaching staff. It’s always a battle.’

The Maidens gained the early edge by touching first in the 200 medley relay, as a foursome of Kailyn Evans, Leah Brown, Erin O’Neill and Olivia DiStefano swam a winning time of 1:50.32.

It was a foursome that would have plenty of success throughout the evening, as O’Neill won the 200 IM, DiStefano was first in the 100 free, and Evans raced to victories in both the 50 free and 100 back.

Hatboro piled up second- and third-place finishes to stay close with the Maidens, but Yacopino’s performance up on the board helped provide some separation and Evans’ win in the 100 back locked it up for NP.

Megan Zartman also notched a pair of individual wins, taking the 200 free and 100 fly. Holland, meanwhile, displayed his versatility, helping to put the Knights further in front with his victory in the IM.

“I tried to take it out as strong as I could — I’m not really much of a fly’er or a backstroker,’ he said, “but I just tried to continue, keep strong, and then finish on the breast and free, which I’m a lot stronger at. I was pretty confident but I knew I had to take it out really strong in that fly. It definitely boosts (my confidence).’

The Knights went on to sweep the relays, providing an ample cushion in the conference-opening victory.

“Coming out of the break, we looked pretty good,’ coach Jeff Faikish said. “We moved some guys around, gave some of our younger kids an opportunity to swim. It was a great meet, considering how broken down and beaten up they are. We had some really fast times today.’

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