Swimming Can’t Defend Championship Title; 30-Point Diving Deficit Gives Deerfield the Win

In a thrilling opening to a highly anticipated 2008 New England Championships, a 37-year old Andover record was broken this weekend by the 200 Medley Relay team of Co-Captain Brendan Deveney ’09, Curtis Hon ’10, Jimmy Brenner ’10, and Steven Lee-Kramer ’09. The boys finished third with a time of 1:37.48, replacing the old school record, which had been national prep school record when established in 1971. First-place Suffield Academy set a new New England record, and all three teams qualified for “All American” standard. Andover traveled to Deerfield last weekend for Interschols, placing second overall to the host team by only 15 points. Of the twenty-one Andover swimmers, twelve returned to compete in finals. Several of Andover’s grade specific records were broken. The meet continued with Matt Mahoney ’11 setting the Junior record in the 200 Freestyle with a time of 1:46.58 to finish fourth. Conor McAuliffe ’10 finished tenth with a personal best of 1:47.76. Deveney ’09 swam next, placing third in the 200 Individual Medley, qualifying for an All American Consideration in 1:55.21. Brenner shattered the Lower record in the 50 Freestyle with a time of 22.21, closely followed by Lee-Kramer in ninth with a time of 22.35. Andover finished the first half ahead of second place Deerfield by a slim seven points. Andover failed to place divers in the top sixteen to score, but Brenner broke the Lower record in the 100 Butterfly to open up the second half of the meet. He finished fourth with a time of 53.54. Brenner now holds both the Junior and Lower records in the event. Alex Smachlo ’11 finished thirteenth with a time of 55.59. In the 100 Freestyle, Deveney ’09 took third with a time of 48.02, alongside teammate Hon who finished fourth with a time of 48.42. Co-Captain Kevin Zhai ’08 placed tenth with a time of 49.58. McAuliffe then broke the Lower record in the 500 Freestyle and placed fourth with a time of 4:45.44. Mahoney finished third and grasped a personal best of 4:47.79. Smachlo finished eleventh with a time of 4:47.58. The 200 Freestyle Relay team of Lee-Kramer, Asa Harrington ’09, Zhai and Brenner finished second with a time of 1:29.40. Ben Morris took tenth in the 100 backstroke with a 56.30, closely followed by Conor Deveney ’11, William Faulkner ’09, and Steven Lee-Kramer in 12th, 13th, and 16th respectively. The 400 Freestyle Relay team of Hon, Zhai, Mahoney, and Deveney ’09 took first with a time of 3:14.37. Despite the victory, Deerfield stole the overall win with a score of Deerfield-332, Andover 317. Brenner said, “I couldn’t be prouder of the way everyone on our team swam. We all trained really hard this season, and I think everyone swam his best. In the end we only missed first place by 15 points, and I think that we’re going to have another really good shot at winning next year. The best part of the meet had to be the medley relay breaking our oldest school record and getting an All-American time. What’s even better is that we can break it again next year.” With only one senior graduating this spring, Andover looks forward to next year, and the team already has plans to recapture the championship title.