TORRINGTON >> Holy Cross boys swimming, the Class S state runner-up for the past two years, beat Torrington handily, 85-77, at the Torrington YMCA Friday night.
The Crusaders, 5-1 overall, have lost only to non-league opponent Avon while sweeping through the Naugatuck Valley League (5-0) on a pace to go undefeated.
The good news for Torrington (4-2), whose other loss came against Seymour this week, is swimming against a team like Holy Cross makes them go faster.
“You always swim faster against faster teams,” said Coach Andrew Marchand. “We swam really well.”
JT Barth and Viktor Nemsvari, Torrington’s winners in the 200-yard individual medley and the 100-yard freestyle were the Red Raiders’ best examples Friday.
“It’s always more fun to win against Holy Cross. I wanted it,” grinned Barth, who caught Crusader Lucas Racevicius in the IM’s final freestyle leg for a split-second win.
“JT’s in the (500-yard freestyle),” said Marchand. “He’s always strong at the end of long races. He trains harder than anyone.”
Barth’s IM time was three seconds faster than his all-time best, five seconds ahead of his best this year.
By the time the 100-yard freestyle rolled around, Nemesvari had a double incentive. Not only was it Holy Cross, but a Crusader beat him by .13 of a second for first place in the 50.
“That made me work harder in the 100,” Nesvari said.
His time, too, was a personal best.
Holy Cross sets the bar high.
“We graduated three great swimmers last year, but we have eight more swimmers on the team,” said Coach Mary Racevicius.
Last year, the Crusaders were fast. This year, they’re fast and deep, winning both relay races and four of the six individual events before going exhibition (no further scoring) for the last three events.
Junior Chris Fryer won the 200 and 500-yard freestyle. John Tucker won the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly. Win or lose, they took two of the first three places in each individual event.
“The NVL championships are our focus, not dual meets,” said Torrington Coach Marchand.
For the Crusaders, the focus is reaching up for the Class S state championship.
Holy Cross 85, Torrington 77
At Torrington YMCA
200-yard medley relay: 1. Holy Cross (Lucas Racevicius, Ben Bowler, John Tucker, Sam Mason), 1:47.92; 2. Holy Cross; 3. Torrington. 200 freestyle: 1. Chris Fryer (HC), 1:54.55; 2. Ryan Hickey (HC); 3. Jackson Keller (T). 200 individual medley: JT Barth (T), 2:05.85; 2. Racevicius (HC); 3. Alex Ford (HC). 50 free: 1. Tucker (HC), :23.37; 2. Viktor Nemesvari (T); 3. Mason (HC). 100 butterfly: 1. Tucker (HC), :57.82; 2. Jackson Keller (T); 3. Ian Denault (HC). 100 free: 1. Nemesvari (T), :50.67; 2. Hickey (HC); 3. Mason (HC). 500 free: 1. Fryer (HC), 5:07.35; 2. Barth (T); 3. Ford (HC). 200 free relay: 1. Holy Cross (Mason, Tucker, Bowler, Fryer), !:36.44; 2. Torrington; 3. Holy Cross. 100 backstroke: Exhibition. 100 breaststroke: Exhibition. 400 free relay: Exhibition.
Records: Holy Cross 5-1 overall; 5-0 NVL. Torrington 4-2.