By John Lohn
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., April 7. THE second day of the YMCA Short Course Nationals brought the excitement level in the Sunshine State to high levels as Wilton erased a 17-year-old record in the 400 freestyle relay en route to padding its lead in the male team standings.
Relying on the efforts of Andrew Trepp (45.82), Phil Baity (46.52), Rob Hannigan (46.25) and Jeff Sudbury (44.55), Wilton touched the wall in 3:03.14, under the former standard of Raleigh, which clocked 3:03.68 in 1988. That Raleigh relay was anchored by future Olympian David Fox.
After two days of competition, Wilton has built a 30-plus point lead over the M.E. Lyons in the male team race. Wilton has totaled 184.5 points to the 151 points of the M.E. Lyons. Lakeland Hills sits in third with 125 points.
In addition to sparking the Wilton freestyle relay, Trepp took top honors in the 200 freestyle with a convincing victory over Hank Browning (M.E. Lyons). Trepp stopped the clock in a quality 1:38.06 while Browning checked in at 1:39.79. Browning also took second place in the 1,000 freestyle, as his 9:14.33 finished behind only Charlie Houchin, who went 9:10.78 for Triangle Area.
Representing Summit, Brian Wilson outdueled Pat Reams (South Shore) down the stretch for a victory in the 100 butterfly. Wilson was timed in 49.76, slightly quicker than the 49.78 turned in by Reams. Meanwhile, East Branch’s Luke Boutwell was the winner of the 200 breaststroke (2:05.45), as he bested Blue Ash’s Andy Dilz (2:06.27).
On the female side, the most intriguing race was the 100 butterfly, where Champaign’s Payton Johnson emerged victorious in 55.45. The big story out of the event, however, was the second-place performance of Felicia Lee. Producing a time of 56.16, Lee was not far off the NAG record in the 11-and-12 division, held by Whitney Phelps at 55.68.
Mattea Perrotta of San Pedro & Peninsula was the victor in the 200 freestyle, as she went 1:49.50 to finish ahead of Leah Gingrich (West Shore) and Corinne Showalter (Sarasota), who tied for second in 1:49.93. Showalter later prevailed in the 1,000 freestyle with a time of 9:49.65. Emily Brunemann (M.E. Lyons) was second in 9:50.24. In the 200 breaststroke, Amy Cipoletti (Franklin County) topped the competition in 2:16.21 and was followed to the wall by Lindsey Graessle (Countryside) in 2:16.30.
Triangle Area’s quartet of Jessalyn Crawford, Lisa Pucci, Mandy Myers and Candace Cooper won the 400 freestyle relay in a battle with West Shore. Triangle finished in 3:29.15 while the West Shore squad of Allison Luttermoser, Ali Zelenky, Tricia Weaner and Leah Gingrich clocked 3:29.47.
In the female team standings, Sarasota holds first place with 181.5 points, ahead of the 129 points by West Shore and the 127.5 points by Boyertown. As for the combined totals, M.E. Lyons is on top with 264 points, in front of Sarasota (256.5) and Wilton (235.5).