While victory has often been difficult for the Joel Barlow High boys swim team this season it has still accomplished other things for its effort.
A small team in terms of numbers, the Falcons also have many underclassmen in their lineup. Yet they have already gained much meet experience for the future.
Visiting New Fairfield on Tuesday, Jan. 22, the Falcons came up short 95-87 but now have 12 swimmers and divers who have qualified for the South-West Conference finals later this season.
The Rebels were fast and deep in the opening event, the 200 yard medley relay, having three teams to Barlow’s one. Brendan Coppinger, Kyle Guffey, Aaron Hurwitz and Ben Rigby combined to finish in 2:17.74, taking fourth.
Barlow did get the win in the 200 free with Dan Fry finishing in 2:01.13 but the Rebels claimed the next three places before Marissa DiBella came in at 2:22.40.
Three scored for the Falcons in the 200 individual medley, starting with Renee Varga taking third in 2:37.66, just 0.07 second ahead of Ted Hancock. Guffey was fifth in 2:51.94.
It was a fast field in the 50 free, which featured the Rebels getting the win and three of the top four places. Ray Bortolot managed second in 25.04 and Jeremy Touma was fifth in 27.18.
Following a one-two New Fairfield finish in the diving event, Barlow placed third through fifth. Matt Mintz scored a 153.30, followed by Kevin O’Donnell’s 146.85 and Gloria Davey posted a 132.45.
New Fairfield’s fastest swimmer competed unofficially in the 100 butterfly , receiving no points. The win would go to Hancock in 1:06.41. Fry was second in 1:09.98 and Sean Murray was fifth in 1:27.89.
Breaking the one-minute mark in the 100 free, Bortolot was second in 54.75. Touma came close, finishing in 1:00.12 for fifth.
Even with the Rebels’ fastest swimmer competing unofficially they still took the top two places in the 500 free. Renee Varga went the distance for Barlow, taking third in 6:22.07. DiBella was fourth in 6:24.85 and Guffey was fifth in 6:29.27.
With the Rebels swimming unofficially in the 200 free relay the Falcons took first when Hancock, Nate Varga, Bortolot and Fry finished in 1:41.96. Murray, Hurwitz, DiBella and Renee Varga were third in 2:01.69.
Another unofficial New Fairfield swim in the 100 backstroke gave the Falcons first here when Coppinger finished in 1:11.67. Fourth went to Murray in 1:26.19.
New Fairfield’s victory in the 100 breaststroke was its only official swim and the Falcons took second through fourth. Hurwitz finished in 1:28, followed by Nate Varga (1:36.13) and Paige Kirby (1:31.63).
When came time for the final event, , the 400 free relay, the Rebels all swam unofficially. Hancock, Touma, Bortolot and Fry were first in 3:52.18 and Rigby, Renee Varga, Coppinger and Guffey followed in 4:28.19.
Now 1-5, Barlow visits Pomperaug on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Note: Bortolot (freestyle), Davey (diving), Fry (freestyle, butterfly), Hancock (butterfly, freestyle), Guffey (500 free), DiBella (500 free), Mintz (diving), O’Donnell (diving), Rigby (50 free), Touma (50, 100 free), Nate Varga (50 free) and Renee Varga (500 free) have all qualified for the SWC meet.