After a 2009-10 season without a pool, the Duxbury girls’ swim team seemed right at home in the newly-renovated Percy Walker pool, as they began their season with back-to-back wins last week over Pembroke (94-74) and Middleboro (82-50). With the addition of 27 freshmen and assistant coach Cassie Littlefield, a former Duxbury swimmer, the Lady Dragons will most likely be a top contender at South Sectionals and Division 2 States in February.

On Tuesday, the Lady Dragons topped Pembroke, winning seven events and qualifying numerous swimmers for Sectionals and States. Sophomore Ellie Johnson led the team with two first-place finishes, edging out the second place Pembroke swimmer in the 200-yard individual medley (2:18.53) for her first State cut.  Finishing third was freshman Olivia Zelvis and senior Alex Brady took fourth.  Johnson’s second win and state cut time was in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:15.63), with freshman Jill Coghlan and sophomore Aly Wolfe taking second and sixth.

Duxbury swept four events, including the 200-yard freestyle. Senior co-captain Sarah Goldberg raced to a state-qualifying 2:04.03, while freshman sister, Jessica, took second (2:13.00), making her first sectional cut.  Junior Haley Chatlin finished in third.

The 50-yard freestyle also had the Lady Dragons take the top three spots and saw sisters competing.  Junior Avery Riddle won that event, blazing to a speedy 26.82, followed by co-captain Emily Hutchinson and freshman sister Hannah, who raced head-to-head, tying for second in 27.09.  All three qualified for Sectionals.

Not to be out-done by her fellow teammates, freshman Katie Eagan cruised to her first State cut (1:05.38) in the 100-yard butterfly, followed by Miranda VanDingstee (2nd) and Brady (3rd).  Similarly, the 500-yard freestyle distance event also saw a first-place State cut time (5:49.15) by junior Abby Mullen, followed by veteran Kassie Sweeney (2nd) and  Coghlan(3rd).

The sixth State-qualifying time of the meet was made by veteran Shelby Rader, who swam a 1:05.5 in the 100-yard backstroke, followed closely by Krista Librett (1:08.62) just missing the cut by .4 seconds, but qualifying for Sectionals. Zelvis finished fourth.  Junior Laura Husted took first place in the 100-yard freestyle, breaking a minute for the first time (59.44) and qualifying for Sectionals.  Freshmen Emily Nichols and Cari Librett took second and sixth. 

On Thursday, the Lady Dragons were at it again, beating Middleboro, 82-50, and adding more championship cut times to their pot.  Johnson, who was the only double- event winner, made her third state cut time in the 100-yard butterfly (1:06.6). Mullen and Brady finished the sweep for second and third.  Johnson continued her winning streak in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:14.69), besting her previous time by a second. 

The 200-yard freestyle had Emily Hutchinson qualifying for her first state cut this season.  She took second in the event (2:08.0), just missing first place by a second.  Mullen (3rd) and Coghlan (4th) were just behind. Riddle, showing her versatility, won the 200 IM (2:27.7), then came back to make her first state cut this year in the 100-yard backstroke (1:07.59).  Those two also combined with Husted and Sarah Goldberg to take second in the 200-yard freestyle relay in a Sectional qualifying time of 1:46.53. 

Goldberg ran away with the 500-yard freestyle distance event, as she cruised to her second state cut in a 5:32.03, winning by more than a pool length.  Finishing second and third were Hutchinson and freshman Elizabeth Buckley. 

The Lady Dragons also swept the 50 and 100-yard freestyle events.  Rader (26.9) won the sprint 50, followed closely by Husted and VanDingstee.  The 100 saw Eagan finish first in a Sectional qualifying time of 59:28, with Sweeney and Jess Goldberg finishing the sweep.

In yet another sweep, the divers also fared well.  Veteran Sam Tougas took first place, with freshman Kelsey Golden (2nd) and Brady (3rd) right behind. 

Two relays also qualified for States.  In the 200-yard medley, Rader, Johnson, Eagan and Jess Goldberg finished first with a time of 2:03.81. Later, Sarah Goldberg, Rader, Hutchinson and Johnson teamed up to win the 400-yard freestyle relay in a time of 4:00.34.
The girls will be back at it on Jan. 4 when they take on Silver Lake at home.