Swimming Advances to Sectional Semifinals with Win Thursday

Swimming Advances to Sectional Semifinals with Win Thursday

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Swimming Semifinal Round, veteran swimmers, 2-0

In the midst of an eye-opening season, the #5 Pirates swim team traveled to Steinert Thursday afternoon for a second round meet against #4 Jackson Memorial in the Central, Group B tournament.

The Pirates came away with a 102-68 victory to advance to the sectional semifinals against West Windsor-Plainsboro South.

“It’s a really great feeling because we are doing so much better than last year and the year before,” Lily Black said. “It’s just really building up confidence as we head into semis next week. We’re just really pumped.”

Cinnaminson advanced to the second round following a 95-75 victory over #8 Brick Memorial on Monday.

Meet Results

With the win, the Pirates are now 10-4 and headed for the bracket’s number-one seed.

The Pirates won the opening event, the 200 medley relay as the quartet of Avery Mancine, Brian Finnan, Ryan Kay and Ben Kern finished first with a time of 1:46.43.

“We swam hot from event one, winning the medley, and the meet continued on from that,” head coach Dave Schroeder said. “To me, it was obvious that we were used to this pressure-cooker, high-intensity situation.”

“The coaches ratcheted it up and so did the swimmers and I think that was the difference. We were way more intense today than we had been all year and it showed in the pool.”

The opening win gave the Pirates a 10-4 lead that they would build on throughout the meet and never relinquish. In fact, Jackson Memorial never got closer than that six-point difference after the first event.

“We told our more experienced veterans on the bus ride up that we had to take the bull by the horns per se,” Schroder said. “The kids believed. They were excited. We knew we were going to come in today and swim well, we just didn’t know what the other team had.”

Cinnaminson lost just one event on the day, the 200 Yard Free Relay. There was a tie in the 100 Yard Fly as Brian Finnan finished first for the Pirates.

The 200 Yard IM saw Jackson Memorial finish first, but the Pirates came away with more team points.

Ben Kern, Brian Finnan and Black each won two events for the Pirates Thursday.

Black broke her own school record in the 500 Freestyle with a time of 5:09.89 in a race that was neck-and-neck from start to finish. Jackson Memorial’s Pat Idank finished in second with a time of 5:09.97.

Yes, the 500 Freestyle was that close of a race. As you can see by the times, these two tweets were not overblown:

“I knew it was going to be a really tough race because people were talking behind the block that he was fast too and I really just wanted to stay with him and not lose where I wanted to be,” Black said. “I kept pushing throughout the whole race and finally came out in the end.”

In the second-to-last event of the meet, the 100 Yard Breaststroke, Finnan finished first with a time of 1:03.68 to clinch the meet victory for the Pirates. The victory gave the Pirates a 92-64 lead and you need 86 points to clinch the meet.

“It’s pretty amazing. Going into the season, I wasn’t even sure if I was going to swim,” Finnan said. “This is the best team I’ve been on in four years of swimming with the high school team.”

“Today, everyone did their job. Everyone stepped up and swam their race. Swimming’s an individual race, but you’re also part of a team. Everyone did their job and as a team, we had a lot of success.”

Cinnaminson will travel to take on West Windsor-Plainsboro South in the sectional semifinals. A date, time and location will be announced at a later time. Stay with Cinn City Sports for updates on the schedule for the sectional semifinal round.

“We methodically planned out this season, with certain meets resting and certain meets going for it,” Schroeder said. “We are swimming against West Windsor-Plainsboro in the semifinals, final four.”

“At this point, you can’t ask for anything more. They’re really good. They power pointed more than Moorestown. We viewed our meet today as our meet to make a big breakthrough.”

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Jim is the creator and editor of Cinn City Sports. He also created At the Dish, Life With Tony and Enzo and is the owner of JAVFreelancing. He coached baseball for five years, three at his former high school (Holy Cross in Delran, NJ) and two at prominent Division III program Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. He has worked for the Courier-Post in Cherry Hill, NJ; Metro Networks in Bala Cynwyd, PA; and was the play-by-play announcer for the Camden Riversharks of the Independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball for two seasons (2007-2008) on Rowan Radio 89.7 WGLS-FM, the student-run radio station at Rowan University. Jim earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications and minor in Journalism from Rowan University in 2008. While in school he was the Assistant Sports Director at WGLS for two years and the Sports Director for one year. He also covered the football, baseball, softball and both basketball teams for the school newspaper 'The Whit.' He is the former Sports Editor for the Cinnaminson and Moorestown Patch websites. Jim lives in New Jersey with his wife Nicole, sons Tony and Enzo and dog Phoebe. He can be reached at jimvassallo@cinncitynews.com