Bronze medal for 200 medley; Gaunci, Williams top

Published in the November 18, 2016 edition

THE MHS girl's swim team earned medals and  broke records at the MIAA North Sectionals last weekend. (courtesy photo) 

THE MHS girl’s swim team earned medals and  broke records at the MIAA North Sectionals last weekend. (courtesy photo)



MELROSE — It just keeps getting better for the Melrose High School girls’ swim team, who proved among the best of the 23 teams competing at the 2016 MIAA North Sectional at Boston University on Nov. 13. Melrose broke two school records, medaled in several events including the 200 free relay, whose teamed earned a first ever bronze medal for MHS behind the efforts of Sam D’allesandro, Virginia Guanci, Maddy Hughes and Molly Williams, who together broke the school record of 1:55.97.

“I’m so proud of these girls, they all worked so hard,” says their coach Deb Deacon.

It was also a historic day for junior swimmer Virginia Guanci, who broke the school record in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:10.85. That was good enough to medal with a fourth place finish behind the toughest competition in the state, Andover and Belmont.

Melrose sophomore Molly Williams stunned in the 500 freestyle, dropping 14 seconds off her personal best time of 5:24.49 to nab a medal with a fourth place finish. “Virginia and Molly swam out their mind,” enthused Deacon.

Melrose senior captain Isabel Bates had the meet of her season, qualifying for States in the 100 backstroke. Her coach couldn’t be more proud. “She is here at Sectionals and soon States for the first time and I could not be more happy with how she performed,” says Deacon.

Melrose also had a solid eighth place in the 400 freestyle behind the efforts of Molly Williams, Madeline Hughes, Virginia Guanci, Samantha D’alessandro with a time of 3:49.05. Junior Sam D’allesandro enjoyed a strong individual day. Besides medaling in relay she placed ninth in 100 butterfly with a personal best time of 1:02.77 and 14th in the 200 free.

Other highlights include: Virginia Guanci swimming a personal best time of 2:16.25 in the 200 IM for ninth place; Jennifer Kahler took 26th place 50 freestyle; Madeline Hughes whose 15th place in the 100 butterfly was a personal best time of 1:04.14; a 15th place finish in the 200 free replay for Olivia DeCecca, Alva Ronn, Isabel Bates and Jennifer Kahler; a 19th place finish in the 100 backstroke for Molly Williams 1:05.73 and a 21st place for Madeline Hughes 1:06.03.

This weekend the team advances to States to take on the best competition from south and central teams. Action takes place on Sunday, Nov. 20 at 6 p.m. at Harvard University.