MIDDLETOWN >> Two-time defending Class L Champion Darien lost just two swimmers from a team that won the State Open for the first time last year.
The prohibitive favorite came through with a 886-611 win over its nearest competition, New Canaan, Tuesday night at Wesleyan University.
“This is probably the fastest division,” said Hall coach John McClure, whose Warriors finished fourth in Class LL last year then moved down to L this year.
“I hope we can finish in the top five,” he said.
Cheshire coach Dan Mascolo hit his pre-meet prediction on the head.
“Nobody’s going to touch Darien,” he said. “And New Canaan has moved up. I think we’ll be in a race with Wilton and Hall for third.”
That’s precisely how it ended.
Wilton (504) moved ahead in the final events for third, followed by Cheshire (464) and Hall (453).
“I’d rather be third, but Wilton swam a hell of a meet,” said Mascolo.
Despite her spot as the big favorite, veteran Darien coach Marj Trifone never stopped worrying.
“If we swim well, we’re good,” she said before the meet. “We’re set for the events — now all we have to do is swim.”
After three events, with an eight-point lead over New Canaan, she fretted, “We’re a little flat right now.”
The end of the meet was the cure, winning by more than 200 points.
“We had a good back half of the meet,” she grinned.
The Blue Wave had three swimmers in the breaststroke championship heat.
By contrast, Hall did great in the relays (a first in the 200 free relay vaulted the Warriors to third briefly), then had nobody in the breaststroke, sinking back to fifth.
Nevertheless, there were happy swimmers everywhere.
Hall freshman Tara Tiernan finished second in the 200 freestyle, beaming, “That was exactly what I wanted.”