Greenwich wins CIAC LL girls swimming title, Staples freshman Annam Olasewere owns record book

The Greenwich girls swimming and diving team won the CIAC Class LL meet on Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021 at Southern Connecticut State.

The Greenwich girls swimming and diving team won the CIAC Class LL meet on Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021 at Southern Connecticut State.

Bill Bloxsom / Hearst Connecticut Media

NEW HAVEN — Greenwich teamed up to use its depth to its advantage as 18 swimmers put points on the board to help the Cardinals win the Class LL championship meet at Southern Connecticut State University’s Hutchison Natatorium on Wednesday.

Greenwich has won 23 Class LL state titles since 1980, including nine straight from 2010-18.

“We’ve been building for this all fall,” Greenwich coach Brendan Heller said after his Cards’ posted a score of 780. “We had our goals, the regular season, leagues and now states. We needed this to get to where we want to be, the State Open on Saturday. It was a full team effort.”

Glastonbury (613) and Ridgefield (604) battled it out for the runner-up position.

Greenwich’s Payton Foster broke the five-minute mark with a time of 4:58.56 to win the 500 freestyle. A sophomore, Foster was part of the Cards’ winning 200-medley relay team and placed third in the 200 IM. Michelle Weissler, Caterina Li and Sena Bozkurt were members of the relay team, which won the event in 1:47.14.

“It was insane,” Foster said. “We’ve been training hard for this after not swimming states last year. We pushed each other. We had so much fun.”

Greenwich senior Isabella Machow had a pair of third-place finishes, in the 100-yard backstroke and 100-yard breaststroke.


It was difficult to upstage the individual brilliance of Annam Olasewere, a freshman freestyler from Staples.

Olasewere energized the crowd when the freshman hit the touchpad in 22.67 to earn the 50-freestyle title. Her time eclipsed McKenna Dale of E.O. Smith’s state record of 23.03 (2016) and Sarah Grinalds class record of 23.22 (2016). Olasewere’s performance also broke the SCSU pool mark of 23.17.

Olasewere was excited by her accomplishment.

“It’s really awesome because I get to help out the rest of my team,” she said. “ A ton of teammates before me, they dropped times to move up in places. I have to thank everyone, especially my family, my captains, my teammates.”

Olasewere then went back in the pool and repeated the sweep. Her time of 50.14 exceeded the state record time of 50.39 (Elizabeth McDonald, Pomperaug, 2011), the Class LL time of 51.11 (Sophie Murphy, Cheshire, 2019) and the SCSU pool mark of 50.77.

Staples, which placed fourth, also saw two of its relays finish first in record times.

Its 200-freestyle relay team of Jessica Qi, Ella Alpert, Ayaan Olasewere and Annam Olesewere broke a 25-year state record with a time of 1:35.75. It bested the class mark of 1:36.42 set by Staples in 2018. Second-place Glastonbury finished in 1:35.90 to also better the state, meet and SCSU mark of 1:36.18 set by Cheshire in 1996.

Qi, Alpert, Ayaan Olasewere and Annam Olesewere weren’t done, winning the meet-closing 400 freestyle relay in an SCSU pool record 3:28.54.


Riley Kudlac from Glastonbury (23.36) and Ludlowe sophomore Kathleen Murray (23.55) threatened to beat the top time in the 50. Murray got back in the pool and won the 100 butterfly with a time of 55.80. Kudlac tied the state mark of 51.07 when the junior was runner-up in the 100 free.

Trumbull’s Lauren Walsh reached forward for one more stroke to win both the 200 individual medley and the 100 breaststroke.

Walsh nipped Enfield/Somers’ Aislin Farris by .32 seconds to take first in the 200 IM in 2:01.59. Farris touched in 2:01.91. A senior, Walsh’s time of 56.74 edged Hall junior Jacqueline Fox (56.82).

Farris from Enfield/Somers broke the SCSU pool record with a swim of 56.74 in the 100 backstroke. Top-seeded Glastonbury junior Avery Kudzak was first in the 200 freestyle at 1:52.25.

The Open Diving Championships will be held today at Middletown High. Competition starts at 5:30.

Open Swimming Championships are Sunday at Cornerstone Aquatics Center in West Hartford. Swim begins at 2 p.m.; @blox354


Team scores: 1. Greenwich 780, 2. Glastonbury 613, 3. Ridgefield 604, 4. Staples 430, 5. Hall 395, 6. Amity 388, 7. Westhill/Stamford 293, 8. Trumbull 241, 9. Norwalk/McMahon 191.5, 10. Ludlowe 189, 11. Southington 174, 12. enfield/Somers 173, 13. EH/Cross/Hill 159, 14. Maloney/Platt 124.5, 15. Hamden 93, 16. East Hartford 89, 17. Manchester 71, 18. West Haven 54, Norwich Free Academy 48.

Individual Results: 200-yard medley relay: 1. Greenwich (Payton Foster, Michelle Weissler, Caterina Li, Sena Bozkurt), 1:47.14; 2. Amity (Elizabeth Bodie, Marea Li, Grace Mahon, Katherine O’Connor), 1:49.12; 3. Hall (Jacqueline Fox, Mindy Zhao, Kali Dominguez, Alyson Booth), 1:49.87; 200-yard freestyle: 1. Avery Kudlac (Glastonbury), 1:52.25; 2. Norah Rome (EH/Cross/Hill), 1:54.02, 3. Keira Giles (Ridgefield), 1:55.77; 200-yard individual medley: 1. Lauren Walsh (Trumbull), 2:01.57; 2. Aislin Farris (Enfield/Somers), 2:01.91; 3. Payton Foster (Greenwich), 2:03.60; 50-yard freestyle: 1. Annam Olasewere (Staples), 22.67* (state record); 2. Riley Kudac (Glastonbury), 23.36; 3. Kathleen Murray (Ludlowe), 23.55; Diving: 1. Hannah Chuckas (Westhill-Stamford), 469.252; 2. Annie Bingle (Greenwich), 461.803; 3. Jade-Su Casey (Glastonbury), 461.20; 100-yard butterfly: 1. Kathleen Murray (Ludlowe), 55.80; 2. Avery Kudlac (Glastonbury), 56.23; 3. Lily Archibald (Ridgefield) Miller ; 100-yard freestyle: 1. Annam Olasewere (Staples), 50.14* (state record); 2. Riley Kudlac (Glastonbury), 51.07); 3. Jessica Qi (Staples), 52.75; 500-yard freestyle: 1. Payton Foster (Greenwich), 4:58.56; 2. Meghan Tiernan (Hall), 5:00.85; Norah Rome (EH/Cross/Hillhouse), 5:06.68; 200-yard freestyle relay: 1. Staples (Jessica Qi, Ella Alpert, Ayaan Olasewere, Annam Olasewere), 1:35.75* (State record); 2. Glastonbury (Avery Kudlac, Norell Paluska, Annika Paluska, Riley Kudlac), 135.90* (state record); 3. Amity (Marea Li, Grace Mahon, Julia Snow, Katherine O’Connor), 1:39.57; 100-yard backstroke: 1. Aislinn Farris (Enfield/Somers), 56.74; Jacqueline Fox (Hall), 56.82; 3. Isabella Malchow (Greenwich), 59.18; 100-yard breaststroke: 1. Lauren Walsh (Trumbull), 56.74; 2. Jacqueline Fox (Hall), 56.82; 3. Isabella Machow (Greenwich), 59.18; 400-yard freestyle relay: 1. Staples (Jessica Qi, Ella Alpert, Ayaan Olasewere, Annam Olasewere), 3:28.54; 2. Glastonbury (Avery Kudlac, Brooke Sowka, Annika Paluska, Riley Kudac), 3:29.21; 3. Greenwich (Payton Foster, Emma Robinson, Caterlina Li, Sofia Wang), 3:31.04.