LOWER OXFORD -- Wednesday afternoon's co-ed Ches-Mont League swim meet between Downingtown East and host Avon Grove resulted in a pair of wins for the visiting Cougars -- 97-89 in the boys' meet and 105-81 in the girls' meet -- and a lot of strong individual performances by swimmers from both schools.
The most impressive performance was turned in by Avon Grove's Carlie Perkins. The Red Devils' junior took first in diving with a score of 254.05 and broke the previous school record of 241.5 which she set last year.
"My highest score so far this season had been 236 so I'm glad I'm improving,' said Perkins. "My inward one-and-one-half was really good today. I usually go as little short but today I was able to nail it. I was really happy with my reverse. I was able to get that one in as well.'
Perkins also finished runner-up in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 26.01. Additionally, she joined with Emma Brinton, Juna Currie and Natalie Slupe on the winning 200 medley relay and with Madi Slupe, Currie and Brinton on the second-place 400 freestyle relay.
"My time in the 50 free was close to my personal best,' said Perkins. "I swam butterfly in the medley relay and that time was close to my best fly split ever.'
Brinton was the Red Devils' only individual double-winner. She took first place in the 200 freestyle with a time of 2:00.97 and then came back later in the meet to win the 500 freestyle with a clocking of 5:21.50.
"My 200 free felt better today,' said Brinton, a freshman. "It was just going out there having fun racing. For the most part, I take it like a sprint. Our coaches have worked with me on going out hard.
"In the 500, I was trying to keep pace with the girl next to me (Downingtown East's Chase Umberger). I took over the lead with about three laps left. I knew what I had left and I decided to use it.'
Downingtown East had a pair of individual double-winners -- Caitlin Manthe, who was first in the 50 free at 24.51 and first in the 100 with a time of 55.16, and Peyton Haefner, who logged a win in the 200 IM at 2:27.06 and the 100 butterfly with a clocking of 1:05.06.
"Today, the 50 was a better race,' said Manthe, who will swim for Towson University next season. "My time was O.K. considering I lifted yesterday and I'm kind of sore. I could feel it in my arms. In the 100, I knew it would go down to the last 25.'
Haefner said, "The IM wasn't my best time but it was a good race. The 100 fly felt pretty good and I had good walls. My underwaters are always my best part.'
Manthe and Haefner also teamed with Courtney Siverling and Chase Umberger on the winning 400 free relay while Siverling and Umberger hooked up with Emily Dickson and Tara Collier to take first in the 200 free relay. Individually, Umberger touched first in the 100 backstroke at 1:05.21 and finished second in the 500 free with a time of 5:25.80.
"Backstroke felt really good -- especially since I'm just coming back from an appendix operation last month. I've only been back in the water for two weeks and my times are still a lot better than they were at this part of the season last year. I've been working on my technique in the water.'
In the boys' meet, the Cougars were able to post a victory because of their advantage in depth. The host team took first in five of the eight individual swimming events but East was able to score solidly behind the top spots.The Cougars' individual winners were Quentin Cody, who was first in the 100 backstroke at 58.47 and placed first in the 200 IM with a time of 2:03.17, and Brett Lambert, who won the 100 freestyle at 51.18 and also placed second in the 100 backstroke at 59.99. Additionally, Connor Melleady took first in diving at 162.65.
"Both races felt about the same,' said Cody, a junior who was also on the winning 400 free relay with Tommy Cestare, Nico Galvis and Conor Tunno.
"My IM times are definitely better than they were a year ago. Backstroke and breaststroke have been the biggest areas of concern. And, I've been getting better off the walls.'
Avon Grove's top individuals were Stephen Dow, who won the 200 free at 1:56.88 and touched first in the 500 free with a time of 5:21.11, and Trevor Brinton, who won the 50 free with a 23.02 and placed second in the 100 free at 51.53.
"I was going for consistency with my splits in the 500,' said Dow, a sophomore. "I wanted to negative-split it -- to go much faster in the second half and not die. The 200 was O.K. The time was decent but not as good as my best in club swimming.'
Brinton said, "The 50 free was my best race today. I went a 22 and that's what I've been holding all season. I've been working really hard lately so my time in the 100 free was pretty good for being tired.'
Downingtown East 105
Avon Grove 81 (GIRLS)
200-yard medley relay -- Avon Grove (Perkins, Brinton, Slupe, Currie) 2:00.63; 200 freestyle —Brinton (A) 2:00.97; 200 IM — Haefner (D) 2:27.06; 50 freestyle — Manthe (D) 25.41; diving — Perkins (A) 254.05; 100 butterfly — Haefner (D) 1:05.06; 100 freestyle — Manthe (D) 55.16; 500 freestyle -- Brinton (A) 5:21.50; 200 freestyle relay -- Downingtown East (Siverling, Collier, Dickson, Umberger) 1:47.15; 100 backstroke — Umberger (D) 1:05.21; 100 breaststroke — Currie (A) 1:17.70; 400 freestyle relay -- Downingtown East (Siverling, Manthe, Umberger, Haefner) 3:52.12.
Downingtown East 97
Avon Grove 89 (BOYS)
200-yard medley relay -- Avon Grove (Carey, Dow, Brinton, Clark) 1:45.79; 200 freestyle — Dow (A) 1:56.88; 200 IM — Cody (D) 2:03.17; 50 freestyle — Brinton (A) 23.02; diving — Melleady (D) 162.65; 100 butterfly — Carey (A) 55.81; 100 freestyle — Lambert (D) 51.18; 500 freestyle -- Dow (A) 5:21.11; 200 freestyle relay -- Downingtown East (Galvis, Hincks, Tunno, Cestare) 1:33.30; 100 backstroke — Cody (D) 58.47; 100 breaststroke — Hausler (A) 1:05.95; 400 freestyle relay -- Downingtown East (Cody, Cesare, Galvis, Tunno) 3:27.57.