Some Section 9 swimming leftovers

Newburgh Free Academy's team T-shirts at the Section 9 boys' swimming championships at Valley Central on Feb. 14, 2015. NFA won its 30th boys' swimming title. (Will Montgomery photo/Times Herald-Record)

One of the tough things about covering a big event like the Section 9 swimming championships is that you can’t mention everything. There’s just too much stuff and not enough space in the paper. So here are some notes from yesterday that didn’t make it into print.

Newburgh Free Academy head coach Zach Williams was voted Section 9’s Coach of the Year at the end of the meet. He was a member of the NFA team in 2006 that won a Section 9 team title. The Goldbacks hadn’t won one since, until Saturday afternoon that is. New Paltz won two, Pine Bush won five in a row and New Paltz won again last year. With Newburgh coming out on top again, the team won its 30th boys’ swimming championship. Some of those date back to the 1950s and predate the modern era, but still, 30 titles is a crazy number.

It’s quite the accomplishment for Newburgh, which faced some stiff competition from Pine Bush, Minisink Valley and New Paltz. Especially for the NFA seniors, who endured some lean years early in their varsity careers, their win on Saturday was the result of years and years of hard work and dedication.

Here are some quotes from Williams that didn’t make the paper.

Re: a big showing at the Section 9 championships after coming up just short at counties two weeks prior:

“That’s the plan for Newburgh swimming,” Williams said. “It was the plan long before I coached and it was when I swam. The goal is to swim our fastest at the Section 9 championship meet, prelims and finals. That’s always been our philosophy and we try our best to make it happen every year.”

Re: dominating the longer freestyles, especially going 1-2-3 in the 500:

“We knew we would score a lot of points in the 500 by design,” Williams said. “I have a lot of kids where that’s what they’re good at, so we kind of roll with it.”

Re: the team t-shirts and winning a 30th title:

“It wasn’t a showmanship thing,” Williams said. “There’s a lot of history in the program…These guys have always heard about that and I thought it was important. They were always in the club because they’ve represented the school with the utmost class but this is like their real entry into that thing. I thought it was important to recognize those past championships.”

Port Jervis placed 14th out of the 14 teams competing, scoring 40 points.

That’s still quite impressive considering Port Jervis is a one-man team in senior Nick Winograd.

Winograd won the 100 freestyle and the 100 breaststroke and he faced some awfully tough competition in both events. In the 100 freestyle, Winograd (47.69) edged Alec Tocco of Kingston and Paddy Thompson of Pine Bush, who tied for second at 48.19. In the breaststroke, Winograd faced fellow state qualifiers in Emile Kuyl and Kaelan Quinn. Kuyl had set a meet record with a time of 58.31 in the preliminary round on Thursday. Winograd, however, prevailed in the finals, placing first in 58.39.

The other double winners on Saturday were Pine Bush senior Jake Borkowski (100 butterfly, 100 backstroke) and NFA senior Charlie Broe (200 freestyle, 500 freestyle). Borkowski earned Most Outstanding Swimmer honors, as he also led Pine Bush’s 200 freestyle and 400 freestyle relay teams to first place finishes.

Friday night, Warwick’s Nick Rusek put on a show as he won his third straight Section 9 diving title. He broke his own Section 9 record – setting a new mark for the third time this season – with a score of 629.90.

He’ll of course be one of the favorites to watch at the state meet later this month, but Rusek will have plenty of competition.

Noah Galluzzo of Mexico in Section 3 has shattered his section’s 11-dive record and he also set a new state mark of 676.0 in his league meet earlier this month. The old state record was 635.75, set by Albany Academy’s Manny Pollard in 2012.

If you missed it, here is the coverage in the paper.

Newburgh Free Academy wins Section 9 boys’ swimming team title

Borkowski named Most Outstanding Swimmer; Kuyl wins Quinn Memorial Scholarship

Rusek breaks own record en route to a third straight Section 9 diving title

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