BUFFALO – The Springville-Griffith Institute girls swimming and diving team finished fifth overall among 13 schools in the Section VI Class C Championships held at the Burt Flickinger Center during the first three days of November.
Elle Holland was part of three school records that included two as an individual and one as part of a relay team as the highlight of the event for the Griffins.
“Elle re-broke her own records with personal best times. Her performance and Shannon [O’Hara’s] in diving stick out in my mind, but the highlight was our 200 free relay team that broke the school record,” coach Karen Reynolds said. “That was a huge surprise and probably my most favorite thing that happened. They’re all underclassman so they’ll all get to see their names on the wall when they compete next year and that’s exciting.”
In addition to Holland, the 200-yard freestyle relay team is comprised of Lauren Ditchey, Hannah Bergner and Allison Lavanture. The group finished fourth in the event for 30 of the team’s 205.5 overall points with a school record-breaking time of 1:46.94.
In the other S-GI record-breaking events, Holland finished third in the 50-yard freestyle (25.10) and fourth in the 100-yard freestyle and qualified for state competition in the latter event with a time of 54.07. Holland is the lone Griffin to move on to states. She also added 31 collective team points with those two finishes to Springville’s total.
The two next best individual finishes were also at fourth place with Carley Delaney earning 15 team points in the 100-yard breaststroke, and O’Hara netting 15 points in 1-meter diving.
“We had 17 girls go to our class meets and two were divers. [The divers] really contributed to our point totals to help us clinch fifth because there was only a 2.5 point difference between us and Eden,” Reynolds added, while noting that no S-GI swimmers made it to finals last year.
O’Hara and Samantha Zifra combined to add 21 team points collectively in diving.
Springville also finished fourth in the 200-yard medley relay for another 30 points. Holland and Lavanture were on both relay teams, but this one included Sydney Emley and Delaney.
The other two double-digit point scorers for Springville were Ditchey in the 200-yard individual medley (13 points) and Lexi Blesy (12 points) in the 100-yard butterfly. Ditchey finished sixth, while Blesy was seventh.
Springville finished in the top-10 in four other races with Emily Schlemmer taking ninth in the 200-yard freestyle. Emley (100-yard butterfly), Ditchey (100-yard backstroke) and Bergner (50-yard freestyle) all rounded out top-10 finishers in 10-th place and added seven team points each.
East Aurora won the event with 399 points, followed by Southwestern, 352; Panama, 264.5; Frewsburg, 262 and Springville, 205.5 to round out the top five teams. Eden finished sixth of 13 with 203 points.
Coach Reynolds said of the eight graduating seniors, some are key losses but there is a strong group of eight juniors that should keep the team competitive next season.