Northampton Press

Friday, February 23, 2018
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Swimmers beat Zephyrs

Wednesday, January 17, 2018 by Wendy Kennedy Special to the Press in Sports

The Northampton boys and girls varsity swim teams claimed a double victory on Thursday night over rival Whitehall High School with a 99-81 victory for the girls and a 90-83 victory for the boys.

With this win, Northampton gained two points in the Cement Belt challenge and added to the team’s winning record so far this season. The Cement Belt Challenge is a yearlong contest between the neighboring communities of Northampton and Whitehall. The challenge which spans multiple high school sports and awards one point for each win in any contest where the two teams face each other.

Throughout the close meet, every point counted and on several occasions the awarding of points came down to a fraction of a second.

One tenth of a second separated Northampton’s Jarin Gaumer, who out-touched Whitehall’s Ziyad Khafagy in the 50 freestyle and likewise in the girls 50 freestyle, Northampton’s Becky Nothstein edged out Whitehall’s Martha Giletto by two-tenths of a second.

The relay events also added to the points totals where the focus turned to not just striving for first place, but ensuring the ‘B’ relay teams secured valuable second or third place points.

Northampton co-captain Jack Kennedy described how the team worked together to secure these wins.

“Overall, we were prepared and the team did an excellent job, not just as individuals but especially on the relays where we were able to build up a lot of points,” Kennedy said.

Northampton took first place in the girls 200 medley relay, the girls 400 freestyle relay and the boys 200 freestyle relay.

Among the points leaders for the Northampton girls were Becky Nothstein with two first place finishes in the 50 freestyle (26.46) and 100 butterfly (1:02.15) and Sarah Hosking with double first place finishes in the 200 IM (2:18.24) and 100 breaststroke (1:10.51). Adding to the points totals were first place finishes from Brynne Rockovits in the 100 freestyle, Larisa Calvo in the 200 freestyle and Morgan Thomas in the 500 freestyle.

For the boy’s squad, Northampton’s DJ Fragano secured first place in the 100 butterfly (59.31) and the boys 200 individual medley (2:16.13). Also accumulating first place points for the boys were Greg Milnes with a time of 1:12.29 in the 100 breaststroke, Kennedy with 1:05.29 in the 100 backstroke and Gaumer with his 23.84 win in the 50 freestyle.

Northampton is looking forward to some tough competitions in the coming weeks with meets against Southern Lehigh and Nazareth.

“They are going to be challenging meets,” said Kennedy, “but we’ll work our hardest and focus on racing the clock.”

Northampton welcomes both teams for home meets this week on Tuesday, Jan. 16, and Thursday, Jan. 18, respectively.