Malvern Prep relay shines in Inter-Ac Championships

Malvern — With the weeks winding down in the 2015 swim season, teams are starting to fine tune, and prepare for the postseason. On Wednesday afternoon Malvern Prep showed they are ready to roll for the homestretch of the year as they tied the Haverford School in the Inter-Ac Championships 379-379.

The Friars (5-0, 8-1) shined despite enduring a demanding portion of their schedule. As they prepare for National Catholics, and the Eastern Interscholastic Swimming Championships, coach Jay Schiller had to shuffle up the lineup against some very tough Inter-Ac opponents.

“Today was a preview of what we will see at Easterns,’ Schiller said. “There will be a bunch of teams in the hunt, our league is very competitive. If you look at the times today, it shows that.’

Schiller was right, five pool records were set on the afternoon. The Haverford School’s Matt Haigh, and Alex Boratto set records. Haigh set his in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:41.55, and Boratto did it in the 100 freestyle with a time of 50.49. Springside Chestnut Hill Academy’s Ryan Torie set it in the 100 freestyle, at 46.06. Germantown Academy’s Andrew Abruzzo’s time of 4:31.86 in the 500 freestyle was a record. The Haverford School’s 400-freestyle relay also set a record with a time of 3:11.

Malvern Prep may not have set any records but their 200-freestyle relay put on an excellent performance. The unit was made up of Billy Beard, Aaron Salinas, Yaseen Thomas, and Zach Maher and they finished in first place with a time of 1:27.75.

Beard led off for the relay, giving his team a comfortable lead.

“We had been shutout in every single race before that point and our coaches told us we had to go out there and win,’ Beard said.

He gave Salinas a one second lead heading into the second interval.

“I just stayed focused the entire time. I knew I couldn’t lose it for us. When I took off I just swam as fast as I possibly could. I had a better turn which I was happy about, and the other guys did great too. It was a good win,’ Salinas said.

With the lead in the hands of Thomas, he was determined to give their anchor Maher some ground to work with.

“I knew I had to win. I didn’t think about anything else. I didn’t see anybody when I was racing, I was trying to swim my fastest,’ Thomas said.

An edge for Maher was all the Friars needed to pick up the victory.

“We wanted to win this race. I saw when had the lead at the end so I just knew I had to do what I had to do,’ Maher said.

With the strong performance they will look to grow on it when they swim in Easterns at the end of February.


Malvern Prep 379, The Haverford School 379, Germantown Academy 321, Episcopal Academy 291, Penn Charter 270, Springtide Chestnut Hill Academy 40

200-meter medley relay — Haverford School (Boratoo, White, Nelligan, Mitchell) 1:37.59; 200 freestyle — Haigh (HS) 1:41.55; 200 IM — Abruzzo (GA) 1:55.20; 50 freestyle — Torie (SCH) 21.20; 100 butterfly — Jin (EA) :51.99; 100 freestyle — Torie (SCH) :46.05; 500 freestyle — Abruzzo (GA) 4:31.86; 200 freestyle relay — Malvern Prep (Beard, Salinas, Thomas, Maher) 1:27.75; 100 backstroke — Boratoo (HS) 50.49; 100 breaststroke — Whitley (PC) 57.98; 400 freestyle relay — Haverford School (Ryan, Mitchell, Haigh, Boratto) 3:11.54.

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