Area swimmers compete in state competitions

It was a productive Division I State Championship Swim Meet in Durham for several local swimmers late Saturday night, including Alvirne’s Lauren Somers, Bishop Guertin’s Mark Zoda, Nashua North diver Connor Mullaly, and also the Bishop Guertin boys and girls swim teams overall.

Somers proved again to be the fastest girls swimmer in the state as she took both the 100- and 200-yard freestyle races while North’s Mullaly won the state boys diving championship.

As for the Cardinals, both the boys and girls teams placed third, the boys with 195 points while winning five events and the girls with 194 and winning one.

Zoda won both the 50- and 100-yard freestyle races. BG at times dominated the boys meet, but just lacked enough depth to pile up points.

"We just had five swimmers," Guertin coach Brendan McLaughlin said of the boys competition.

"You know, if I had just one more, it might have been worth 50 more points and we would have won it."

Exeter, as of now, won the Division I title in both meets, although there was reportedly the possibility of a points recount in the boys meet. The Blue Hawks took the boys with 223 points, followed by Pinkerton (216), BG (195), Dover (134) and fifth place Bedford (133). Nashua North was ninth with 59 while Alvirne and Nashua South tied for 11th with 15. Merrimack was 13th with two.

In the girls, the Blue Hawks totaled 207, followed by Dover (197), BG (194), Alvirne in fourth at 146, and Bedford fifth in 141.

Nashua North was ninth with 75 points while Merrimack was 10th with 37. Nashua South was 11th with 34.

In the girls meet, Somers won the 200-yard freestyle in 1:53.31 and the 100-free in 51.61 seconds.

"There’s no question she’s the fastest swimmer in the state," BG coach Brendan McLaughlin said.

Also for the Broncos, Alvirne was fourth in the 200-medley relay with the team of Arianna Nigioni, Haley Summers, Lauren Somers and Madison DeLaCruz posting a time of 1:57.19.

That same team foursome finished second in the 400 free relay in 3:44.67.

Summers was second in the 50 free in 25.80 seconds. Alvirne’s Julia Balukonis was third in the 1-meter diving with a point total of 261.85.

Of note, Bronco Jenna Banatwala was sixth in diving after having competed in the state gymnastics meet earlier in the day.

As for the Cardinals, their highlights included:

The 200 yard medley relay was won by the Cardinal foursome of Kerry McCann, McKenzie Sweeney, Katie Mahoney and Anastasia Ausiannikava in 1:54.93. Guertin also took the 200 free relay in 1:45.76 behind Mahoney, Olivia Petropulos, Elena Moleski and McCann.

McCann finished second in the 200 IM in 2:15.08 and third in the 500 yard freestyle in 5:26.60Ausiannikava was third the 100 butterfuly in 1:04.03.

Sweeney (1:10.69) and Petropulos (1:12.44) were two-three in the 100-yard breaststroke, while Mahoney was also fourth in the 50 free in 26.08.

For Nashua North, Pritthida Chea captured the 500-yard freestyle in 5:14.19 and was third in the 100-yard backstroke in 1:01.40. Alexandra Norris was fourth in 1-meter diving at 218.70.

Merrimack was led by Lauren Brennan, who was fifth in the 200 IM in 2:20.46 and sixth in the 500 free in 5:36.46. Tomahawk Elise Jolly was ninth in the 50 free (27.24)

Nashua South got almost a third of its points with the team of Regina Chartier, Caroline Ferris, Evelyn Lee and Hannah Swabowicz taking eighth in the 400 free relay in 4:14.05. Lucina Yi was eighth in the 100 butterfly.


The Cardinals Mark Zoda took the 50 free in 21.88 seconds and 100 free in 48.34, while Matt Lashua won the 100 butterfly in 54.20.

Guertin also took the 200 free relay with Lashua, Thomas McLarney, John Puksta and Shusta posting a combined 1:32.31, and the same foursome captured the 400 free in 3:24.26.

Zoda, Lashua, McLarney and Puksta were third in the 200 medley relay (1:44.39).

Shusta was second in the 200 free in 1:51.13 while Puksta was third in 1:55.72; McLarney got points for fifth in the 50 free.

As for the Titans, besides Mullaly winning the diving, Thomas Pappas was fifth at 166.05. and was eighth in the 100 backstroke. Mitchell Mahoney was eighth in the 200 IM and ninth in the 100 free. North’s 400 free relay team of Pappas, Mahoney, Mullaly and Ryan Lawes came in ninth.

Other local teams had limited results. For the Broncos, John Sojka and Patrick Cabrera were tied for 11th in the 100 free. Sojka, Josh Allard, Adam Banatwala and Cabrera finished 10th in the 200 free.

Merrimack’s Alexander Johnson was 11th in the 100 breastroke.

For South, the foursome of Nicholis Wai, Noah Telerski, Sam MacIntyre and Kyle Castrigno were 11th in the 200 free and 10th in the 400 free relays.