The Foran High girls swim team battled Lyman Hall of Wallingford on Monday but came up on the short end of a 96-90 final margin.
The Lions received a solid team effort, but in the end the Trojans had one too many first-place finishes.
Valerie Mackin swam to a first-place showing in the 50 freestyle at 27.60 and Hannah Johnson took first place in the 100 breaststroke at 1:21.81. The Trojans racked up firsts in the other 11 events to stay ahead
“We are actually off to our strongest start in years,” Foran head coach Kristin Skuches said. “We have a solid senior class and they have put at the forefront of their goals to have a winning dual meet season.”
The Lions (2-3) are led by senior captains Alex Corsi, Mackin and Makaila Cavender.
Corsi and Mackin are returning state finalist from last season, along with junior Cara Dube, and are school record holders.
But the key to reaching the team goal may be in the proficiency of two-time state finalist senior Janel Crespo.
“We have four swimmers back who were state finalist last season,” Skuches said. “That’s a lot of experience to go into a season with.
“Come November, seniors Makaila Cavender in the sprint free, Morgan Preiss in the backstroke and Hannah Johnson in the breaststroke could be in a position to qualify for the states.
“Our divers, senior Elissa Paulino and junior Tiana Lazo, have been giving us solid performances in every meet.”
Foran showed the total team effort concept in a 91-69 win over Seymour.
Crespo and Dube led the Lions with double first-place efforts.
Crespo raced to victory in the 200 freestyle at 2:11.85 and then pulled away from the field in the 500 with a swim of 5:54.40.
Dube was the hands down winner in the 100 backstroke, putting up a time of 1:05.78, and then took first in the 200 IM at 2:24.28.
Junior Sarah DeLuke took the 100 freestyle with a time of 1:01.04.
It was in the relays that Foran truly teamed up, as it swept all three relays to pull away from Seymour.
The 200 medley relay squad of Crespo, Johnson, Dube and Corsi swam to a first-place finish in a time of 2:10.03.
The 200 freestyle foursome of Johnson, Corsi, Mackin and Cavender won in 1:55.56.
Foran closed out the victory with Erica Hansen, Crespo, Dube and Mackin winning the 400 relay in 4:13.90.
“We have a lot of girls stepping up and giving us solid contributions,” Skuches said.
“Seniors Katie Alderman in the IM and Kim Panettieri in the freestyles, and juniors Sarah DeLuke and Jillian Page have shown lots of improvement.
“Sophomore Sabrina Yakush, along with freshman Hannah Buckley and Erica Hanson have also stepped up for us.”
What will push the Lions towards the team goal of a winning dual meet season is team depth and that includes senior Rosario Mariano, juniors Jenna Bartosiewicz, Tatiana Bernal, Marissa Lorenzo, Rachel Manto and Elizabeth Nolan.
Foran is also deep at the underclassmen level.
Sophomores Hannah Birenbaum, Amber Frank, Marina Kydes, Dana Luzzi, Corissa Masciana, Amanda Roma and Jennifer Weissauer, along with freshman Alexa Newall and Emma Diglio represent the future.