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Norton High Lancers Earn State Cuts at TVL Swim Meet

Maddie Thomson and Olivia Karcis will return to the state championship meet while David Aranjo became the first boy in school history to qualify for a postseason meet.

While three Lancers managed to qualify for the state championship meet, it wasn't enough to get the win in the Tri-Valley League Championship.

With the depth and talent to take on anyone in the league, it is easy to see why Hopkinton was seen as the favorite going to the TVL Meet. Beating second place finisher Medfield by 469 points, the Hopkinton Hillers were once again crowned the swimming champions of the TVL. The win is the Hillers third championship in a row.

Led by senior captain and twins John and Paul Lagasse, the Hillers took eight of the boys events. John walked away as the league champion in the boys 100 breaststroke (1:04.91) while Paul was a double individual champion with wins in the 50 freestyle (23.75) and 100 freestyle (51.93). Not to be outdone was younger brother Kevin Legasse who earned a first place finish in the 200 freestyle (1:52.80).

Aside from the first place finishes, the Hillers quickly scored points with multiple finishers in the top 10.

“We got a lot of kids in that third through tenth range. Our relays swam incredible and our girls really stepped up,” Hopkinton head coach Bryan King said.

The Hillers had no problem in the relays winning five of the six relay races. The girls 400 freestyle survived a surge from the Dover-Sherborn A team to finish with a time of 4:01.63 to D-S’ time of 4:02.12.

“They worked as a team. When I think about four kids in a relay is they all have a little part in it,” King said.

On the diving board, the Hillers got wins from both Jason Cardillo (196.25 points) and Renee Salois (229.60). Hopkinton also took the top three spots in the girls’ dive.

Carley Adams was the lone individual swimming winner for the Hillers with a victory in the 100 breasstroke (1:11.40)

Despite a small team, the Norton Lancers managed to get four postseason qualifiers from three athletes. Diver David Aranjo became the first boy in Norton history to qualify for a postseason meet. Starting the season with no diving experience on a team that had never had divers before, Aranjo’s second place score of 178.95 was good enough to qualify for the sectional meet.

“Honestly I don’t even have any words to describe,” said an excited Aranjo. “I had been nervous all last night and then I did and it was an amazing feeling.”

Hitting the state cut by .54 seconds in the 100 backstroke (1:06.32) was Oliva Karcis who also came in second. Edging out Karcis was Lauren Grassberger of Ashaln with a time of 1:05.85

“When I was racing I was trying to pace myself with the girl next to me and all I wanted to do was see that 1:06 on the scoreboard," said Karcis. “When I saw it, it was an amazing feeling.”

Maddie Thomson once again broke the school record in the 500 freestyle (5:28.56) as part of a comfortable victory for the league title. The time also gets Thomson well under the state cut of 5.50.27.

“Its an awesome feeling I love it,” Thomson said of breaking the school record.

Thomson’s other state cut came in the 200 freestyle (2:05.06). Pushing the Norton sophomore was a friendly rivalry with second place finisher in both events Kate West from Dover-Sherborn. The two have traded wins in the past and Thomson was looking for two big wins for league titles.

“I just really wanted to race against Kate (West) again. We have a very fun race and I really wanted to beat her,” Thomson said.

Medfield’s seven first place finishes were good enough to end the meet in second place. Connor Haley took both the 200 IM (2:09.79) and the 100 backstroke (58.02). Connor Davis earned a win in the 100 butterfly (55.95). Alec Haley was the fourth member of the boys team to win an event with a victory in the 500 freestyle (5:04.91).

The girls’ 200 Freestyle relay (1:52.37) was the only team not from Hopkinton to win a relay. Sarah Nisbet and Jen Alban earned league titles in the 50 freestyle (35.98) and 100 butterfly (1:03.06)

Several members of the TVL will take part in next weekend’s MIAA Sectional Meet at MIT. 

Team Results

1. Hopkinton - 1,295.50

2. Medfield - 826.50

3. Dover-Sherborn - 757

4. Holliston - 580

5. Ashland - 472

6. Norton - 426

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