Girls swimming: Wilton qualifies 11 for Class L finals

While the Wilton High girls swim team qualified 11 swimmers for this week's Class L state finals, the results were somewhat disappointing at last Saturday's Class L trials at East Hartford High School.

In most cases, the Warriors wound up finishing below their seed. Of the 11 swims where Wilton was seeded top eight, the Warriors qualified for the A finals in only six swims.

"Some people did pretty well and some people did not do as well as anticipated," said head coach Todd Stevens. "It's a little deflating when you have kids seeded in the top eight and then they don't qualify for the top eight."

Because some teams did not suit up for their conference championships, their seed times were slower than would be expected. Teams like co-favorites Darien and Cheshire, for instance, were much faster than their seed times on Saturday.

"If you don't suit up before the meet, your seed times are coming out of your dual meets," said  Stevens. "I knew teams like Cheshire and New Canaan and Darien were going to surge from their seed times and move up in the qualifying races. That's what happened with Darien and Cheshire."

Stevens said he was still happy about where Wilton stood going into Tuesday's Class L finals at Southern Connecticut State University.

"We did what we needed to do in terms of qualifying the relays" he said. "We're looking good for third and that's better than we did last year, and I'm pretty pleased wth that."

The Class L competition actually got underway with the diving championship on Nov. 9 at Middletown High School.

Allison Courtney finished fourth (421.3 points) to lead the Wilton divers. Marra Woodring placed 13th (330.25) and Amy Malburg was 18th (294.2).

Courtney qualified for Friday's State Open with her top-four finish.

At the swim trials, Taylor Loud led the way, qualifying for the A finals (top eight) in two events, while Emma Kauffeld, Ellen Holmquist, Emma Babashak and Katie Stevenson qualified for the A finals in one event each.

At trials, Loud was third in the 50-yard freestyle (25.21) and fourth in the 100-yard freestyle (season-best 54.26).

Holmquist was sixth in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:08.34), and also placed 10th in the 200-yard individual medley (2:12.37).

Kauffeld finished seventh in the 500 freestyle (5:11.61) and 10th in the 200 freestyle (1:59.41).

Babashak placed eighth in the 100 butterfly and 13th in the 500 freestyle (5:21.38).

Stevenson was seventh in the 100 freestyle (55.25) and ninth in the 50 freestyle (25.7).

Morgan Dill qualified for the B finals (ninth through 16th) in two events — the 50 freestyle (11th, 25.79) and 100 freestyle (14th, 56.41).

Liela Hastings was 14th in the breaststroke (1:11.03) and 18th in the 200 IM (2:19.01) to make it back to Tuesday in both events.

Emily Walden earned a spot in the B finals with a 16th-place finish in the 500 freestyle (5:26.43).

Also earning a spot in Tuesday’s C finals (17th through 24th place) were Julianna Hume in both the 200 freestyle (20th, 2:02.22) and 500 freestyle (21st, 5:28.48); NoraNoël Nolan in the 200 IM (23rd, 2:21.93); and Lily Kealy in the butterfly (24th, 1:03.01).

Wilton had top-five finishes in all three relays.

In the 200-yard medley relay, the team of Dill, Holmquist, Babashak and Stevenson was third in 1:52.75.

Wilton also had a third place in the 200 freestyle relay with the team of Dill, Stevenson, Kauffeld and Loud (1:42.56).

In the 400 freestyle relay the Warriors were fifth with the team of Babashak, Kauffeld, Holquist and Loud (3:42.34).

Other Wilton swims at Saturday’s Class L trials were:

Brooke Kelly, 26th in the 100 free (57.23) and 27th in the 100 backstroke (1:16.23);

Ellie Cramer, 26th in the 100 back (1:06.19);

Madeline Pennino, 29th in the 200 IM (2:24.05) and 32nd in the 100 fly (1:04.28);

Pauline Hendricks, 31st in the 200 freestyle (2:06.48);

Elizabeth Breslin, 33rd in the 100 breast (1:15.28);

Avery Rowland, 34th in the 50 free (26.99);

Grace Schaller, 36th in the 100 fly (1:06.55);

Julia Morneau, 37th in the 100 back (1:07.6);

Lily Kealy, 41st in the 100 back (1:08.63);

NoraNoël Nolan, 41st in the 100 breast (1:17.53).