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Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019: Stepanek, Deuel dominate at state swim meet

   Leading off today: Chloe Stepanek of Northport and Megan Deuel of Pittsford scored two individual victories apiece Saturday in the NYSPHSAA girls swimming championships at Ithaca College.

   Stepanek captured the state and Federation titles in the 100- and 200-yard freestyles for the third consecutive year en route to being selected the meet's outstanding swimmer for the third time.

   "It's truly an honor and very humbling. You have so many other great swimmers here," Stepanek said. "I never go into an event saying, 'I'm going to be the MVP' because you never know what can happen."

   Stepanek broke her own state record in the 200 free with a time of 1:46.15. Her previous mark (1:46.73) was set at the Section 11 championships two weeks ago.

   Her winning time in the 100 free was :48.76.

   Deuel concluded her scholastic career with 11 state titles after winning the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke. Her time of :52.95 in the butterfly broke the state record of :53.13 by Kristen Romano of Long Beach in 2016. Deuel's backstroke time was :53.82.

   "I really came into this meet wanting to race," Deuel said. "I knew I was going to have a great race in both my events. I hoped to go that fast, but I wasn't sure I was going to. When I saw that (butterfly) time I was definitely really happy."

   Deuel rarely competed in the backstroke during the season but chose the event over the 200 individual medley while deciding which races to enter at the state meet.

   Deuel also helped Pittsford to second overall (and first in the NYSPHSAA) in the 200 medley relay and third overall (second in the NYSPHSAA) in the 400 freestyle relay.

   Other meet highlights included Oceanside senior Catherine Stanford repeating as the state champion in the 50 free, also winning the Federation title with a time of :22.84. She also placed second in the 100 free in :49.94.

   Port Jefferson senior Kyra Sommerstad successfully defended her title in the 200 IM (2:02.17).

   Hempstead Sacred Heart freshman Cavan Gormsen earned the Federation title in the 500 free with a state- record time of 4:46.75, eclipsing the 4:46.80 logged by Lindsay Stone of Pittsford in 2016. Gormsen also helped Sacred Heart's 200 medley relay to a state record of 1:42.21 and the 400 free relay team to victory in the final event of the day.

    • You can sift through the full rundown of the meet's swimming and diving results in our reference library.


   Cross country: Sam Lawler of Pittsford Mendon and Katelyn Tuohy of North Rockland pounded out convincing individual victories in the Federation Championships at Bowdoin Park in Poughkeepsie.

   The Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake boys and Saratoga Springs girls brought home team championships.

   Lawler won in a nearly demoralizing 15:57.2 over five kilometers, with Burnt Hills sophomore Ryan Allison next at 16:16.6.

   "It's a great meet to win," said Lawler, who won the NYSPHSAA Class B championship last week.

   "I told Sam just treat it like another race," Mendon coach Chris Compson said. "It's a fantastic field every year, on a famed course, so that plays more with your mind than with your legs.

   "We run on a weekly basis courses harder than Bowdoin. It can be very intimidating, but the hill is relatively short and early in the race. The rest of it is flat and downhill."

   Tuohy made it consecutive Federation wins (the meet was canceled due to weather last fall) with a time of 17:02.5.

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  • NYSPHSAA cross country: 2019 boys meet | 2019 girls meet
  • Girls swimming: Swimming | Diving

  • Tuohy, who last week won her third straight NYSPHSAA Class A crown, led start to finish and hit the tape 57 seconds ahead of Cornwall freshman Karrie Baloga.

       "I felt I could have run faster, but I feel I'm starting to get better and better," Tuohy said.

       Running with a lineup of two sophomores, three freshmen and two eighth-graders, Saratoga Springs overwhelmed North Rockland 36-157 in the team race. The Streaks' Ella Kurto (18:18.8) placed second and McKinley Wheeler (18:50.8) seventh. All five scorers finished in the top 18.

       Boys volleyball: McQuaid and Grand Island captured NYSPHSAA championships at Albany Capital Center.

       McQuaid secured the Division I title with a 16-25, 25-21, 26-24, 16-25, 15-12 victory over Sachem North in the final. Grand Island swept past Jamesville-DeWitt 25-12, 25-16, 25-11 in Division II.

       McQuaid has been playing the final weeks of the season remembering former Knights star Dane Leclair, who died at age 22 in a fall from a Lincoln, Nebraska, parking garage.

       Sachem North had posted a 25-20, 34-32 win over McQuaid in pool play earlier in the day.

       "Before the final match we met in the hallway and said this is the last time this family will take the court together. Honor the past, present and future players, honor everyone and Dane," coach Christopher Parks said. "I didn't win a championship, those 21 young men won and I am just lucky enough to be the coach. It means everything it really is absolute joy. I got to watch our boys win and in a way Dane won one, too."

       Said junior Keeler Thomas: "We've been down before but if we stayed in control and positive we knew we could pull one out."

       J-D had downed Grand Island 25-18, 25-17 in pool play before recovering to earn the school's first team state championship in any sport.

       "It's blown my mind," said junior outside hitter Billy Wieberg, named the tournament MVP. "I can't get over the fact that we won state. It's so big that it's crazy."

       Girls volleyball: Sunday's championship pairings are set for the NYSPHSAA tournament at Cool Insuring Arena in Glens Falls:

    • Class AA: Connetquot vs. Baldwinsville.
    • Class A: Irondequoit vs. Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake.
    • Class B: Ardsley vs. Westhill.
    • Class C: Valhalla vs. Portville.
    • Class D: Candor vs. Panama.
       Ardsley, Valhalla and Candor all finished 6-0 in opening-day action.

       Panama got in with a 25-18 win over Haldane in a tiebreaker after the squads each finished 3-3 in pool play. Westhill won its tiebreaker 25-12 over Broadalbin-Perth after those teams finished 3-3 in pool play.

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