BRUNSWICK — In all the years that the Mount Desert Island High School swim program has won hardware, the boys’ and girls’ state championship trophies have never come home in the same season — until now.
MDI concluded the season in grand fashion earlier this week as the boys’ and girls’ swim teams both won Class B titles at the state championships at Bowdoin College. The state championship wins marked the sixth overall and first since 2014 for the girls’ team and the ninth overall and third in a row for the boys’ team.
The action began Monday with the Class B girls’ meet, in which MDI racked up 379 points to take the title. The Trojans beat out second-place Greely (333 points) and third-place Cape Elizabeth, the latter of which was a three-time defending state champion.
Individually, Cecilia Saltysiak gave MDI a win in the second event of the day with a time of 2 minutes, 0.27 seconds in the 200-yard freestyle. The Trojans later added a team win in the 200-yard freestyle relay as Nina Rozeff, Callan Eason, Daisy Granholm and Ruby Brown posted a time of 1:43.43 to beat the team from Greely to the wall by 0.38 seconds.
Elsewhere for MDI, Brown (50- and 100-yard freestyles), Zoe Horton (100-yard butterfly), Lily James (100-yard breaststroke) earned individual third-place finishes. The team of Cecilia Saltysiak, Maria Saltysiak, Nina Rozeff and Ruby Brown took third in the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:46.37.
“We had this [state meet] as our focus all year,” MDI head coach David Blaney told the Portland Press Herald after the girls’ meet. “We came off [our usual] events in our conference championships. We trained for this, so I’m not surprised at all.”
Tuesday was the MDI boys’ team’s chance to shine, and the Trojans did so as they racked up 336 points to make it two state championship wins in as many days. The result saw Blaney’s team finish 50 points ahead of second-place Cape Elizabeth and 106 clear of third-place Greely.
MDI’s Brendan Graves, Sam Mitchell, Jon Genrich and Amos Price took second in the 200 free relay with a time of 1:34.50. Yet that was far from the only solid relay showing for the Trojans, who took third in the 200-yard medley relay (Graves, Mitchell, Ponce Saltysiak and Tyler Willis) and fourth in the 400 free relay (Price, Willis, Julian Walls and Cody Parker).
Individually, Mitchell (1-meter dive and 100 freestyle,) Price (200 freestyle), Willis (100 fly) and Graves (100 breaststroke) notched third-place finishes for MDI. Parker added fourth-place finishes for the Trojans in the 200 and 500 freestyles.
“The kids were focused,” Blaney told the Press Herald after the boys’ meet. “They really knew what they had to do and went out and did it.”
Although MDI didn’t produce as many first-place finishers as teams such as Cape Elizabeth and Morse, the Trojans had the depth in both the boys’ and girls’ competitions to prevail. For the other Class B coaches, that was not unexpected.
“That’s typical MDI,” Greely head coach Rob Hale told the Press Herald. “It wasn’t surprising.”
Ellsworth head coach Jim Goodman agreed.
“MDI dominated both meets, and they had awesome swimmers and times,” Goodman said. “Their exceptional talent and numbers were critical to their success.”
MDI will return 22 members of its’ girls’ team next year, though the Trojans will lose Brown, Granholm, Elise Craighead, Yarrow Fabian, Hannah Viechnicki and Veroniqa White. The boys will bring back 18 of 20 with only Price and Lanvin Estacio set to graduate.