By Marisha Goldhamer
ALEXANDRIA, VA – The Chinquapin Wahoos, Alexandria’s only public swim team, top the standings at 3-0 in the blue division of the Colonial Swim League. Drawing swimmers from across the city, the Wahoos are the only undefeated team in the division following a 318 to 129 victory over the Chase Club Sharks of Fairfax.
The Wahoos led throughout the meet. The team racked up points with relay victories, including the fastest boys 18 and under 200-meter freestyle time in the CSL this season. Karon Salee Moten, Alex Guevara, Jonathan Ramsdell and Emil LaSida touched in 2 minutes 00.09 seconds, and will be the team to beat at the CSL relay carnival meet on July 10.
The July 2 meet opened with a decisive win by the Wahoos in the 200-meter mixed age, mixed medley relay. Bella McLemore, Ronan Lauinger, Eleanor Medina and Tyler Turner beat the Sharks by 20 seconds.
The boys 11-12 200-meter medley relay team also put on a show. Guevara, Christopher Billips, Christopher Paz and Rodney Gardner finished the race a full 50-meters ahead of the Sharks in a time of 2 minutes 50.22 seconds.
The win had the swimmers bursting with excitement on the deck and Coach Kirsten Lauinger said the race helped inspire the team.
In individual successes, Salee Moten won in league-leading times in the boys 9-10 50-meter freestyle, 34.51 seconds, and the 50-meter backstroke, 39.97 seconds. LaSida’s winning 27.36 second time in the 50-meter backstroke is the fastest this season in the boys 15-18 division.
Swimmers can compete in a maximum of three individual events to earn points for the team in CSL meets. Six Wahoos – Bennett Sherry, Salee Moten, Guevara, Ramsdell, LaSida and Madison Schang – completed a triple, winning all of their races.
Sherry topped the boys 8 and under 25-meter backstroke with a time of 24.41 seconds. He went 1-2 with teammate Daniel Freinberg in the 25-meter breaststroke (31.17 and 35.15) and won the 25-meter butterfly in 26.94 seconds ahead of teammate Max Kessler-Gowell (31.50).
Kessler-Gowell also won the 25-meter freestyle (21.53) with Wahoo Derrick Grajkowski second (24.65). Sherry, Freinberg, Kessler-Gowell and Grajkowski won the 100-meter medley relay with a time of 2 minutes 06.69 seconds.
Salee Moten’s wins led the 9-10 boys. He and Turner went 1-2 in the 50-meter freestyle (34.15 and 35.13) and 25-meter butterfly (17.43 and 18.12). Turner topped the 50-meter breaststroke in 49.89 seconds, with Ethan Sherry adding a third place point in the 50-meter backstroke (46.56). Salee Moten, Turner and Sherry were joined by Sawyer Blais to win the 100-meter medley relay in 1 minute 24.97 seconds.
In the 11-12 division, Guevara topped a Wahoos sweep of both the 50-meter breaststroke and butterfly. He won the breaststroke in 44.27 seconds ahead of Billips (53.41) and Dominic Grajkowski (55.32) and the butterfly in 39.82 seconds over Paz (42.03) and Gardner (49.02). Guevara also led in the 50-meter backstroke, touching in 38.18 seconds with Paz third (48.78).
In the 50-meter freestyle, it was a Wahoos battle at the wall. Paz touched in 37.09 seconds, just ahead of Billips in 37.19 seconds.
Ramsdell led the boys 13-14 age group as the Wahoos swept a shorthanded Sharks squad in the 50-meter freestyle, backstroke and butterfly.
Ramsdell won freestyle in 28.44 seconds ahead of Eddy Paz (30.12) and Alex Wittmer (32.79). He also topped the butterfly with a time of 31.05 seconds, followed by Wittmer (35.62) and Paz (36.37). The backstroke was led by Wittmer in 38.18 seconds, with Paz second (45.00) and Xavier Young third (46.02). Ramsdell and Young finished 1-2 in the 50-meter breaststroke (35.03 and 49.75).
The 200-meter medley relay team of Ramsdell, Wittmer, Paz and Young won unopposed in 2 minutes 28.24 seconds.
LaSida continues to lead a strong 15-18 boys squad. He went 1-2 with Ronan Lauinger in the 50-meter freestyle (24.98 and 26.50) and backstroke (27.36 and 30.47) before winning the 50-meter butterfly in 27.50 seconds with teammate Jolan Foronda third (28.86).
Foronda won a Wahoos sweep of the 50-meter breaststroke, touching in 32.55 seconds ahead of Lauinger (33.04) and Blake Conjura (38.56). LaSida and Foronda teamed with Ronan and Bodie Lauinger to win the 200-meter medley relay in 1 minute 59.53 seconds.
This is the second triple in a row for Schang in the girls 11-12 division. She led a Wahoos sweep of the 50-meter butterfly with a time of 35.61 seconds, followed by Medina in 39.40 seconds and Grace Wittmer in 44.85 seconds. Schang also won the 50-meter freestyle in 31.70 seconds with Medina third (35.06) and the 50-meter breaststroke (40.53) with Julia Davis third (50.50).
Davis and Eleanor Robb went 2-3 in the 50-meter backstroke (43.63 and 45.27) before joining Medina and Schang to win the 200-meter medley relay in 2 minutes 40.85 seconds.
The Wahoos celebrated a first-ever win for Beatrice Mills in the 8 and under 25-meter backstroke. Her time of 28.02 seconds just beat teammate Ryan Shaw (28.92). Shaw also picked up second place points in the 25-meter freestyle with a time of 24.43 seconds.
With butterfly stroke difficult to master for the youngest swimmers, Wahoo Sophie Wharton was the only girl in the 8 and under division to swim a legal race on either team. She snagged first place points for her time of 44.93 seconds. Wharton also took second in the 25-meter breaststroke (32.90) followed by teammate Cecila Frisk in third (39.63).
Shaw, Wharton, Frisk and Greta O’Hara won the 100-meter medley relay in 2 minutes 27.56 seconds.
The 9-10 girls faced a challenge from the Sharks, but Micael Zuniga and Isabel Matorana went 1-2 in the 25-meter butterfly (21.36 and 23.43) while Frea Montes de Oca won the 50-meter breaststroke in 53.27 seconds. Zuniga also scored points for third place in the 50-meter freestyle (43.48) and backstroke (55.41).
The 200-meter medley relay was close throughout, but Matorana, Montes de Oca, Zuniga and Genesis Divett pulled out a win. Their time of 1 minute 35:57 seconds was two seconds ahead of the Sharks.
For the first time this season, the 13-14 Wahoos girls swept the 50-meter backstroke. Camila Zuniga won with a time of 41.53 seconds, hitting the wall just ahead of McLemore in 41.73 seconds, with Jacari Jahi in third (47.34). In the 50-meter butterfly it was McLemore (41.02) just ahead of Zuniga (41.43) for second and third.
Evangeline Billips put up two wins for the 13-14 girls. Her 34.60 second win in the 50-meter freestyle was followed by a 47.24 second win in the 50-meter breaststroke. Zuniga was third in free (35.07) and McLemore third in breast (42.75) before they teamed with Billips and Jahi for a 2 minute 52.35 second win in the 200-meter medley relay.
The Sharks strongest squad was their 15-18 girls who swept the 50-meter freestyle and backstroke. Maria McLemore snagged third in the 50-meter breaststroke – her time of 42.75 seconds was less than a second off first place (42.36). Catherine Salomons also won a point with her third-place finish in the 50-meter butterfly (35.97).
The Wahoos will take on the Chantilly Highlands Dolphins at the Old Town Pool on July 9.