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Falcons swimmers set two new school records at State Open championships

NEW HAVEN, March 17 – Two new school records were set by the Avon High boys swim team at the State Open swimming and diving championships at Kiphuth Pool on the campus of Yale University on Saturday.

The 200-yard freestyle relay (Justin Arroyo, Alec Traktovenko, Chris Chute and Andre Richard) swam a school-record time of 1:31.58, breaking the old mark of 1:31.72 set here at the State Open a year ago. Arroyo and Richard were part of that team last March.

All four swam personal bests in their 50-yard legs. Arroyo swam his leg in 23.02 seconds followed by Traktovenko (23.07), Chute (23.57) and Richard (21.83). Avon’s time of 1:31. 58 was good enough for 16th place overall.

Richard also competed individually in the 50-yard freestyle, finishing 21st with a time of 22.42 seconds.

The other school record at the Open was set by diver Brendan Downey in competition held two days earlier at Bulkeley High in Hartford. Downey finished fifth with a school-record performance of 451.40, breaking the mark of 301.1 that he set year at the State Open.

It the highest finish for an Avon diver in State Open history.

“He was on his game and steady,” Avon High coach Diana Cesaro said of Downey’s performance at the State Open. “He is an incredibly talented driver with great form. He does hard drives, expecting perfection.”

Those challenging dives cost Downey at the recent CCC North championship meet and last week’s Class M championship meet.

At the CCC North meet, he was leading but had one bad dive and he finished second. At the Class M meet, Downey had an early lead but stumbled midway through the program to drop down in the rankings. But Downey finished strong on his final three dives to finish third and earn a bid to the State Open for the second straight year.

“It was a great end to a building year,” Cesaro said.

Since 2009, the Collinsville Press has been providing award-winning coverage of sports and news in the Farmington Valley and across Connecticut.

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