TORRINGTON >> Sometimes it’s all about the times.
Naugatuck’s 92-76 girls swimming win over Torrington Friday night was no surprise to anyone at the Torrington YMCA.
But, in swimming, like golf, the first battle is with oneself.
“We’re going for best times tonight,” Torrington coach Katie Gregory said, before the meet.
Then Jess Gray, Emily Mazzarelli, Payton Welch and Amanda Thiel surprised their coach with a win in the first event, the 200-yard medley relay.
Thiel, a sophomore, had the final leg, the freestyle, after Welch pulled ahead in the butterfly. Thiel hung on from there.
“Yeah, but no,” Thiel said . “I saw (her opponent) dive in at the same time as I did. It got my adrenaline flowing.”
Torrington’s lead lasted just three more races, but the adrenaline flow worked for both sides through the meet.
“I love meets like this because the competition is so good the kids just go for it and get great times – especially if they don’t know the score,” Coach Gregory said .
In an upward spiral, Torrington’s best times pushed Naugatuck as well.
“We swam well,” Naugatuck coach Jim Mckee said . “Each person swam their best time.”
Down 10-4 after the first race, Greyhound Cara Rotatori’s win in the 200 free helped tie the score 15-15. Then a win in the 200-yard individual medley by Torrington’s Welch nudged the Red Raiders back in front 24-22.
“It’s a little sad,” said Welch, one of six seniors in their final home meet. “We’re all trying our hardest.”
Greyhounds Tattiana Serrano, Erica Spino and Olivia Filanowski swept the 50-yard freestyle, 35-27.
Welch won again in the 200-yard butterfly, whittling Naugatuck’s lead back to 42-36, but the Greyhounds were in front for good.
Rotatori won the 100 freestyle. Sophomore Addison Best broke six minutes for the first time (5:59.24) while winning the 500 free. Then a first and second in the 200 free relay capped the win for Naugatuck, 77-47.
Nobody told Torrington.
Junior Jess Gray churned through the 100-yard backstroke for a win.
“I got so close to the seniors this year. We’re trying our hardest for them,” Gray said.
Alexandra Silva’s win in the 100-yard breaststroke pushed Naugatuck’s lead to 92-64. The Greyhounds went exhibition (stopped counting their scores) in the final event.
Nevertheless, Red Raiders Gray, Cara McCarthy, Jen Friscia and Welch came in first in the 400-yard freestyle relay, swimming their hardest.
The Greyhounds, 8-3, go out-of-league to Masuk-Monroe next Wednesday.
Torrington, 4-7, swims league-leading Sacred Heart at Kennedy.
Naugatuck 92, Torrington 76
At Torrington YMCA
200-yard medley relay: 1. Torrington (Jess Gray, Emily Mazzarelli, Payton Welch, Amanda Thiel), 2:11.39; 2. Naugatuck; 3. Torrington. 200 freestyle: 1. Cara Rotatori (N), 2:09.72; 2. Gray (T); 3. Addison Best (N). 200 Individual Medley: 1. Welch (T), 2:29.91; 2. Alexandra Silva (N); 3. Faith Tuscano (N). 50 free: 1. Tattiana Serrano (N), :27.87; 2. Erica Spino (N); 3. Olivia Filanowski (N). 100 butterfly: 1. Welch (T), 1:07.00; 2. Spino (N); 3. Cara McCarthy (T). 100 free: 1. Rotatori (N), 1:00.09; 2. Serrano (N); 3. Mazzarelli (T). 500 free: 1. Best (N), 5:59.24; 2. Jen Friscia (T); 3. Meghan Lauer (N). 200 free relay: 1. Naugatuck, 2:00.12; 2. Naugatuck; 3. Torrington. 100 backstroke: 1. Gray (T), 1:11.10; 2. Tuscano (N); 3. Friscia (T). 100 breaststroke: 1. Silva (N), 1:20.51; 2. Mazzarelli (T); 3. Amanda Rinaldi (N). 400 free relay: 1. Torrington (Gray, McCarthy, Friscia, Welch), 4:11.66; 2. Naugatuck; 3. Naugatuck.
Records: Naugatuck 8-3; Torrington 4-7.