Germantown Girls, Peddie Boys Lead After Day One At Eastern Interscholastic Championships

Eastern Interscholastic Championships

PHILADELPHIA – The Peddie School looks secure to win the boys’ team title after one day of competition at the Eastern Interscholastic championships, while the girls’ team race is featuring a close battle with Peddie, Mercersburg Academy and defending champion Germantown Academy.

For Germantown, winning the team title would be a fitting sendoff for longtime coach Richard Shoulberg, who is officially leaving his post as head coach after this meet, and a good start for new head coach Jeff Thompson as he works to continue the longstanding tradition.

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The Peddie boys lead Georgetown Prep by 100 points, 259-159. Germantown holds a 21-point lead over Peddie in the girls’ meet with 248 points to Peddie’s 227. Just four points back is Mercersburg with 223 points.

Peddie’s dominance in the boys’ meet was highlighted by a win in the 200 medley relay with a 1:33.63. Roman Horoszewski (24.15), Jared Fitzgerald (25.70), Nathan Stern (23.18) and Sean Han (20.60) led from start to finish, holding off a determined squad from Penn Charter that placed second with a 1:34.73. Reece Whitley, the breaststroke phenom now in his freshman year at Penn Charter, split 24.91 to move his team from sixth to second. Whitley didn’t have the fastest breaststroke split; that belonged to Georgetown Prep’s Carsten Vissering, whose 24.72 helped his team place third from lane six with a 1:35.03.

Peddie didn’t win any individual events in the boys’ meet, but had swimmers in every championship final to amass the big points lead. The Hill School, just a few miles northwest of Philadelphia, won the 200 free relay with a 1:23.45, just seven tenths off the 23-year-old meet record of 1:22.70 by Mercersburg. Peddie (1:24.27) and Lawrenceville (1:25.97) rounded out the top three. Ryan Owens gave The Hill School another win with a come-from-behind-victory in the 200 freestyle with a 1:39.33 that beats his lifetime best by three hundredths of a second. Adrian Lin of Peddie also made a late surge to place second with a 1:39.77, while Horoszewski was third with a 1:40.32 after leading for about 150 yards.

Whitley nearly beat his lifetime best in the 200 IM, blowing the field away with a 30.81 breaststroke leg to win with a 1:49.43. He’s been faster, with a 1:49.03 to his credit from last December’s Tom Dolan Invitational. With three more years left at the meet, he has Nick Kaschik’s 17-year-old meet record of 1:48.10 in his sights. Yes, Kaschik swam that time before Whitley was born. Matt McPheters of Mercersburg placed second with a 1:52.05 while Andrew Abruzzo of Germantown was third with a 1:52.22 after qualifying first for finals with a 1:51.28. Notably, Vissering swam a 1:52.34 to win the consolation final heat.

Swimming in lane one as the fifth-fastest seed in the championship final, Ben Carter of Mercersburg stunned the field by winning with a 20.72, beating his lifetime best of 20.92 from March 2014. Tying for second with matching times of 20.91 were Jack Mahoney of Penn Charter and Ryan Torie of Springside Chestnut Hill Academy.

Mercersburg got another win in the next boy’s event, the 100 butterfly. Brandon McCredie held off a strong charge in the final strokes from Malvern Prep’s Billy Beard to win with a 49.63 to Beard’s 49.93, the only two swims under 50 seconds today. Sterg Dikos of The Hill School was third with a 50.47.

Germantown won two of the individual events in the girls’ meet to hold on their lead in the points race. Shannon McKernan made a run at Katie Riefenstahl’s meet record of 1:46.60 in the 200 freestyle, splitting 51.57 at the 100-yard mark to put herself in contention. But the senior fell off the pace in the final 50, posting a 1:47.27. It was well ahead of the 1:51.96 by Milton’s Lilly Vivado and the 1:52.86 by Germantown’s Karlee Karminati. The other win for Germantown came in the 200 IM in another dominating swim. Madison Visco led from start to finish, blazing the field with a 35.35 split in breaststroke to win with a 2:03.06. More than five seconds back was Sarah Baturka of The Episcopal Academy with a 2:08.42, while Laura Morley of Peddie was third with a 2:08.61.

Baldwin’s Val Yoshimura was unable to defend her 50 free title, falling to Peddie’s Nika Blank and her 23.75. Blank was a bit faster in prelims with a 23.69 and was the only swimmer under 24 seconds in the event. It’s not her fastest time, though; that would be a 23.51 from an in-season tri-meet this past December. Yoshimura was second with a 24.02 while Peddie’s Vanessa Ruiz took third with a 24.18.

Emma Seiberlich of The Episcopal School and Mercersburg’s Lauren Greenberg used strong underwater kicks to separate themselves from the field and put on a show in the 100 butterfly final. Seiberlich won with a 54.80, while Greenberg was not far back with a 55.37. That’s a personal best for Seiberlich, while Greenberg was about four tenths off her best.

Seiberlich was part of the winning 200 medley relay for Episcopal, posting a 1:46.59. Buoyed by Seiberlich’s 26.49 backstroke split, Episcopal was not to be challenged. Mercersburg was second with a 1:47.91 while Peddie took third with a 1:48.93 to set up the team battle that was to follow throughout the session.

Peddie held off a strong Germantown team to win the 200 free relay with a 1:35.35. Blank was under 24 seconds again with a 23.84 leadoff leg for Peddie, but Germantown had a 23.27 from McKernan to give them the early lead. Episcopal took third with a 1:37.11.

2015 Eastern Interscholastic Swimming and Diving Championships, Day One – Results

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