All-Delco Swimming: Episcopal underclassmen Sumner, Seiberlich shine again

In addition to swimmers of the year Maddie Hart and Alex Boratto, the rest of the All-Delco team includes:

Alex Sumner, Episcopal Academy: The sophomore was among the ringleaders in an all-out assault on Delco swimming history. She set county marks in the 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke at the Eastern Scholastic Championships, taking gold in both races by wide margins (nearly five seconds in each race) en route to female swimmer of the meet honors. Sumner’s time in the IM (2:01.24) took down the second-oldest record on the books, Haverford grad Patty Gavin’s mark of 2:03.69 from 1982. She doubled down in the 100 back, winning in 53.57 seconds, a meet record. Both swims are All-American times. Sumner led off EA’s winning medley relay and the victorious 400 freestyle relay, which posted the fastest time in Delco history by some four seconds. Sumner has achieved several cuts for this summer’s U.S. Olympic Trials.

Emma Seiberlich won individual titles in the 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly at the Eastern Interscholastic Championships for Episcopal Academy. (Times File)
Emma Seiberlich won individual titles in the 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly at the Eastern Interscholastic Championships for Episcopal Academy. (Times File)

Emma Seiberlich, Episcopal Academy: The junior made a strong case to reclaim the Female Swimmer of the Year award she earned in 2014, instead settling for a third All-Delco appearance. With Sumner’s expertise in backstroke and a scheduling conflict that forced her into two first-day individual swims, Seiberlich shifted priorities ably, registering extra wins for second-placed EA at Easterns. She branched out to the 200 free, easily taking the Easterns crown in 1:49.71, a Delaware County record a second and a half quicker than Strath Haven’s Frances Resweber last year. Seiberlich eased to victory in the 100 butterfly in 55.23 seconds. Her 200 free and fly prelims time of 55.16 are worthy of All-American consideration. Seiberlich swam fly on EA’s winning 200 medley relay and returned the second night to lead EA’s 400 free relay to victory. Her leadoff leg of 51.67 seconds briefly stood as the county record. Like Sumner, Seiberlich will swim at this summer’s Olympic Trials.

Claire Walsh, Penncrest: The freshman started her high school career with a run of sprint victories that rewrote the record books. She ends her freshman campaign owning county marks in the 50 free (23.20 seconds) and 100 free (50.76). She upended Emily Baturka’s five-year-old standard in the former and was nearly a second faster than Seiberlich’s record in the latter. More pertinently, Walsh constantly dropped time as the season progressed. In the 50, she went from 24.14 seconds to set a Central League meet record to 23.59 in winning the District One Class AAA title to 23.39 in prelims, then 23.20 in finals at the PIAA Class AAA Championships en route to a silver medal and an auto All-American time. In the 100, she nearly pulled a next-to-last-heat upset at districts, settling for second in 51.18, then topped out at 50.76 (an All-American consideration time) at states en route to fourth place.

Frances Resweber, Strath Haven: The senior gets her third straight All-Delco nod, solidifying her place among Delco’s most accomplished distance swimmers. The Davidson commit posted the fastest time in the county in the 500 free by over nine seconds, an All-American consideration cut of 4:55.21. She was second to Seiberlich in the 200 free (1:51.32). She finished second in the 200 free and third in the 500 at the District One Championships while guiding Haven’s freestyle relays to states, where they finished 14th and 17th. At states, Resweber rebounded from a disappointing morning swim in the 200 that landed her in 10th place. She returned the next day to improve on her districts finish by claiming second in the 500.

Sarah Baturka, Episcopal Academy: The senior three-time All-Delco and 2013 Daily Times Female Swimmer of the Year leaves school with a Delco record on her resume. She won the 100 breaststroke at Easterns in 1:04.72, overtaking the record of Garnet Valley’s Lauren Early. Baturka finished fifth in the 50 free at Easterns in 23.81 seconds, helping the Churchwomen to second place overall. Baturka anchored both of EA’s winning relays, bringing home the 200 medley with a split of 23.69 seconds and the 400 freestyle in 51.19. She will continue her swimming career at Cornell University.

Julia Cullen, Radnor: The sophomore two-time All-Delco is emblematic of the depth in Delco and District One. She couldn’t crack the A final in either of her events at the PIAA Championships, taking 10th place in the 100 fly and 100 free, yet both times are All-American consideration cuts. Her best time in the 100 fly came at districts, where she claimed fourth in 55.84 seconds. She was 12th in the 100 free at La Salle in a relatively sluggish 52.55, but she made the most of her second chance at states, dropping over a second to 51.28 in finals. Cullen helped Radnor’s medley relay finish 13th at states.

Ben Baturka, Episcopal Academy: The senior made it a perfect four-for-four in All-Delco picks before heading to Division III power Kenyon College. He had the bad luck of swimming the same events as Boratto to leave Easterns without a gold medal. He finished third in the 100 fly in 50.86 seconds. He bumped up to second in the 100 back, again outracing Charlie Ryan but behind Boratto, in 50.69 seconds, an All-American consideration cut. Baturka uncorked an anchor leg of 45.62 seconds in the 400 free relay to pace EA to fifth place, and his leadoff leg in the medley relay final (23.52 seconds, second to Boratto at 23.44) helped EA finish sixth in the event and fourth in the team competition.

Episcopal Academy's Ben Baturka was voted an All-Delco in each of his four season. (Times File)
Episcopal Academy’s Ben Baturka was voted an All-Delco in each of his four season. (Times File)

Charlie Ryan, Haverford School: The junior two-time honoree shadowed the events of Boratto, scoring valuable points for the Fords with very quick times. He was fourth in the 100 fly in 51.09 seconds, the third-fastest time in the county behind Boratto and Baturka and 2.1 seconds quicker than any of the PIAA contingent. Likewise, he was third-fastest in Delco in the 100 back (2.8 ahead of the PIAA swimmers) with a best time of 51.01. That was third at Easterns and an All-American consideration cut. He swam fly on the Fords’ fourth-place medley relay and split 45.55 in the 400 free, the second-fastest in the county to Boratto. The Fords were second at Easterns in 3:04.50, quickest time in Delco history.

Matt Haigh, Haverford School: The 2015 Daily Times Male Swimmer of the Year earned his second All-Delco nod. A University of Pennsylvania commit, Haigh won the 500 free in 4 minutes, 32.24 seconds at Easterns, slower than the Delco record he set last season but still worth All-American consideration. He added a silver medal in the 200 free in 1:41.04, .03 slower than his prelims time which was fastest in the county by two seconds. He stuck to freestyle for his relays, anchoring the Fords 200 squad in 21.54 seconds, the fastest of the foursome, to take fifth. Haigh swam the second leg of the 400 free relay, his split of 46.48 helping secure second place and emphatically delivering for the Fords a second-place team finish. It’s the second straight season they’ve finished second, the best result in program history.

Ivan Puskovitch, Episcopal Academy: The freshman continued his ascent with two Easterns A finals. He went 1:54.93 in the 200 IM, taking fifth and shaving nearly two seconds off his prelims time. He gave Haigh a run for his money in the 500, swimming nearly six seconds faster in the evening prelims. He clocked in at 4:33.89, second to Haigh in Delco this season. Puskovitch was part of EA’s two A-final relays, taking fifth in the 100 free and sixth in the medley, in which Puskovitch swam breaststroke.

Greg Giannella, Radnor: The junior sprinter was the lone Delco swimmer to qualify for states in two events. He failed to final in either, finishing 25th in the 50 free and 30th in the 100 free, but he contributed to two Raiders relays that made finals, earning 12th in the 200 free and 15th in the 400. Giannella posted the second-fastest 50 time in the county at 21.89 seconds to earn sixth at districts. His relay split of 20.72 was the fastest in the county. He registered a 47.42 in December in the 100 free, slightly quicker than the 47.81 that garnered seventh at districts and the fourth-quickest time in Delco.

Andrew Owsiany, Episcopal Academy: After starring alongside his brother, three-time All-Delco and Delco double record-holder Josh, since eighth grade, Andrew shined in his senior campaign. He finished second at Easterns with an 11-dive score of 521.00 points. Owsiany claimed the Inter-Ac title with a six-dive tally of 343.85 points, winning by over 100 points. His six-dive high on the season was 352.05 points, one of the top three scores in Delco history. He’ll dive next season for the University of North Carolina, while Josh just completed his freshman season at rival Duke.

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