From 1986-2011, the Cheshire girls swim program pulled off one of the most impressive feats in high school girls swimming history with a national record 281 consecutive regular season dual meet wins.
Four years ago the Rams started another streak when this year’s seniors were freshmen. This season, the Rams’ eight seniors accomplished what many of the seniors did throughout that long national record win streak by finishing their four-year run with an unbeaten dual meet record. On Oct. 16, the Rams ended their regular season with a 101-77 victory over SCC rival Lauralton Hall for an 11-0 dual meet record. They clinched the SCC regular-season title.
The eight seniors finish their four-year high school dual meet competition with a 44-0 record. Captain Liz Boyer (school records in 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly), captain Jordyn Deubel (individual medley, breaststroke), captain Stephanie Silin (diver), Amanda Go (sprint freestyles), Lizeth Morales (sprint freestyles), Serena Patel (sprint freestyles), Jessica Tan (butterfly) and Alexa Tejeda (distance freestyles) have contributed to the winning tradition at Cheshire all four years.
“When the eight seniors were freshmen, I knew we had good swimmers in that class and that they would make an impact right away,” said six-year Cheshire girls swim coach Dan Mascolo. “A lot of the fanfare goes to Liz ( Boyer) with her success. But all eight of the seniors have been very successful.
“Hard work is the reason for their success. This group fought and clawed their way to success with hours and hours of pushing themselves. When it comes to success in swimming you need depth and the underclassmen have been just as important as the seniors in our success. It’s all a part of the cycle of being on the team. When our seniors were freshmen they looked to the seniors who set examples for them. This season, the seniors are setting the examples for the freshmen.”
Boyer, who has verbally committed to swim at Harvard, is a three-time Register All-Area girls swim selection and was the All-Area MVP as a freshman.
“When we got to 43-0, at that point going 44-0 crossed everyone’s mind,” Boyer said. “It’s amazing to finish your four-year career 44-0. What those girls did to set the national record with 281 straight wins was special. It’s so cool for us to go undefeated and experience the kind of four-year success those seniors had and it’s been a lot of fun.
“We never went into our meets focusing on any record. Every dual meet is important. All we ever do is try to do our best and do well for the team each meet. And this success isn’t just about us seniors. Everyone came together, all classes, and everyone has been amazing. Underclassmen always come in with so much energy in our practices and in our meets.”
Silin said there has never been any pressure when it comes to records or streaks.
“We don’t ever think about records or streaks,” Silin said. “The only pressure we have is the personal pressure we put on ourselves to work our hardest to improve and perform the best we can to help the team. We take it one meet at a time. But, to be honest, going 44-0 means a lot and it feels good.
“When we were freshmen we never thought about going 44-0. I remember back then everyone was so high and there was so much excitement going into each meet. It’s the same way today. The underclassmen this season have been very important in our success and they are going to be amazing next season.”
One benefit in recent years has been the ability to practice and host meets at home at the Cheshire Community Pool. In February 2013 the bubble covering the pool to make it an indoor venue collapsed due to a snowstorm. The pool reopened as a year-round venue in February 2016 with a new permanent covering. While the pool was closed the Rams had to be bussed to Hamden Hall to use the Hornets’ swimming pool for practices and “home” meets.
“We were lucky to be able to use Hamden Hall’s pool when the bubble went down,” Mascolo said. “But it’s so big to be able to train here in Cheshire and not have to deal with being bussed back and forth. It’s a huge difference being at our pool where you have 10 lanes to train in instead of the six lanes at Hamden Hall. It really helps with your development.”
Mascolo said he tries not to compare what his team is accomplishing now compared to what was accomplished in the 281dual meet win streak.
“Every year is a new story with new challenges including so many improving teams in the SCC ,” Mascolo said. “We don’t focus on dual meet records. It’s not the end of the world if we lose a dual meet. The dual meet season is all about getting better. We use the dual meets as a rehearsal for the postseason meets.
“We have been fortunate to have numerous girls make all-state and advance to state finals.”
Deubel, who has made a verbal commitment to swim at Marist, has a personal connection with the 281 win streak. Her sister Taylor Deubel graduated in 2013 and contributed to the streak.
“Being a part of that 281 win streak is an important legacy for my sister,” Jordyn Deubel said. “I remember how exciting that was at the time and I couldn’t wait to be part of the team. But as a freshman me and my teammates never thought about going unbeaten . We just wanted to improve our development.
“Now that we’ve gone 44-0 it’s really cool. It’s really cool to start up another dual meet win streak.”
Next up for Cheshire and its SCC rivals is the SCC girls swim meet on Nov. 1 at Southern Connecticut State at 6 p.m. Cheshire has won the SCC meet team title 22 times in the 23 seasons the meet has been held, including the last five.