McDonogh's streak hits 28 after 61-32 win over NDP

Swimming

High Schools

January 08, 2004|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

The small white sign taped to the wall next to the pool at McDonogh yesterday said it all: "27-0 and counting ..."

McDonogh now must change the sign after winning its 28th straight meet with a surprisingly easy 61-32 victory over fellow Independent Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference power Notre Dame Prep. The Eagles won all 10 races and had little trouble in a battle of undefeated teams.

The two teams tied for first place in last year's IAAM conference meet after McDonogh had won the regular-season crown. Notre Dame Prep (8-1) has won or tied for first in the conference meet for at least the past eight years, but McDonogh (5-0, 5-0) might be able to end that streak this season.

Notre Dame Prep coach Lisa Wiegmann said she was very much aware of the strength of McDonogh's lineup before the meet.

"They're very strong swimmers that are high caliber," Wiegmann said. "We knew coming in the caliber of their swimmers."

The Eagles have won 26 division meets during their 28-meet streak, and yesterday they relied on the performances of senior Claire Hutchinson and sophomores Anne-Marie Botek and Kelly Peloquin to turn the meet into a blowout.

Hutchinson broke her own school records in winning the 200 freestyle (1 minute, 53.84 seconds) and 500 freestyle (4:59.80). She also swam on the 200 medley relay team and 200 freestyle relay team - both of which took first place. She said McDonogh likes the pressure of the streak and uses it for motivation.

"It kind of [pushes] you to know that someone wants to go after you," Hutchinson said. "This is the most exciting meet of the year for us."

Botek won the 100 butterfly (57.73) and the 100 backstroke (59.42) and also swam on the two victorious relay teams. She said she agreed that the Eagles thought this would be a closer meet.

"They've always been our biggest rivals," Botek said. "We didn't think we'd win this big."

Peloquin also swam on the two winning relay teams and added wins in the 100 breaststroke (1:06.04) and the 200 individual medley (2:07.07). She broke her own school record with the win in the 200 IM.

McDonogh also got individual wins from senior Danielle Spearman in the 100 freestyle (53.76) and Kat McIntosh in the 50 freestyle (24.68).

Wiegmann said she liked the efforts of the Blazers' Katie Auerbach, who took third in the 200 freestyle and also swam on the third-place 200 freestyle relay team.

Both teams now are looking forward to the IAAM championships, set for Feb. 1 at UMBC.

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