By JOE GONILLO

(courtesy Mike Donoghue)

August – love the month! It is still summer; family and friends’ birthdays, pools still open, athletics just around the corner, the Champlain Valley Fair, golf, lots of free time and inching closer to the start of another school year. State swim meet was last weekend. Women’s summer soccer league down to semi’s and finals this week.

Our Sand Hill Park Town of Essex Swim Team swimmers finished a strong second scoring 2,416 pts to The Edge’s 4,406 with BTC placing third with 2,005 in the Vermont Swim Association Championships last weekend at the Upper Valley Aquatic Center in White River Junction. Over 800 swimmers from 19 teams across the state competed.

The TEST 18 and under men led the way with two first place relay finishes, crushing their competition and setting two new VSA relay records (beating TEST’s own records set last year). The 200 medley relay with Ross Macy (back), Oliver Austin (breast), Cameron Marcus (fly) and Casey Keenan (free) finished with a time of 1:38.76. The 200 free relay record was set by Ross Macy, Elliot Limanek, Oliver Austin and Casey Keenan with a time of 1:30.10. Casey Keenan, one of two graduating seniors from TEST, went on to break two more individual 17-18 Men’s VSA records in the 50 free (21.93) and 100 free (47.85), and he finished first two more times in the 17-18 men’s 50 back and 100 back.

TEST 14 and under men’s 200 medley relay were Luke Austin (back), Thomas Denton (breast), Jacob Antonovich (fly) and Owen Robinson (free), who finished first by just missing the VSA record previously set by TEST in 2015. This same group of boys went on to break the VSA 200 free relay record, but they were touched out by BTC’s 14 & under boys in a race to the finish. Thomas Denton ended up with four individual first place finishes in the 50 breast, 100 IM, 100 back and 100 breast.

Other first place finishers included Elise Subin-Billingsley in the 10 and under girls 25 fly, Sierra Harris in the 12 and under girls 100 fly, Lexi LaFountain in the 12 and under girls 100 back and 50 back, Owen Ackerman in the 12 & under boys 50 breast and 100 breast, Katie Miller-Johnson in the 14 and under girls 200 free, Oliver Austin Open in the men’s 500 free and the 15-16 men’s 200 IM, Ross Macy in the 17-18 men’s 50 fly and Cameron Marcus in the 17-18 men’s 100 fly.

See the other TEST swimmers with top-twelve finishes above.

The Edge’s Alex Meek won the 13-14 boys 50 back; 13-14 boys 50 free – second place, 24.46; 13-14 boys 100 back – second place, 59.62; 13-14 boys 100 free – third place, 53.71; and the 13-14 boys 50 back – first place, 27.0. Lucius Karki of the Edge also took third place in the 13-14 boys 100 back, 1:02.56; 13-14 boys 50 back – second place, 27.88. The two teammates also combined to score a pair of third place finishes as members of the 13-14 boys medley and freestyle relays.

The Edge’s Caleb Workman placed in the men’s open 500 free – 3rd place, 5:13.37; the men’s 15-16 100 back – 2nd place, 1:01.37; and the men’s 15-16 200 free – second place, 1:56.82. Workman was also a member of the men’s 15-18 medley relay, which took second place.

SHP assistant manager and SHP lifer, Nicola Anderson, is one of the Edge coaches. Congrats and great job all.

Finally, Jake McIntyre of Essex and representing Green Mountain Aquatics, competed in Richmond, Va. on Aug. 2 – 5 at the 2018 USA Swimming Futures Championships. Jake placed 38th in the 1500 meter freestyle, 27th in the 800 meter freestyle, and 54th in the 200 meter backstroke. He also completed the 200 meter IM and 200 meter freestyle, earning best times in those events. This week Jake will be joined in Richmond, Va. by fellow GMA and TEST teammates Oliver Austin of Essex, and Cameron Marcus of Jericho for the Eastern Zone Championship Meet. Good Luck boys.

Women’s Soccer League Final Standings

  1. Vt. Energy Legs
  2. Huff N’ Puff
  3. 2 Sisters
  4. Shenanigans

On Sunday evening No. 1 VEL battled No. 4 Shenanigans in one semi while No. 2 HnP played No.3 2 Sisters at the Tree Farm for the right to play in Wednesday evening’s finals. Results just in before the deadline saw VEL defeat Shenanigans 3-1. After a 0-0 first half, the six-time champs scored a minute plus into the second half. They added two more before Aneesa Hartman (Hartman till Saturday, as she’s getting married) scored Shenanigans’ lone goal. Jill Charest, Leah Teter, Niki Davignon all scored for VEL. 2 Sisters edged Huff N’ Puff 2-1 in a game not indicative of the score. Wednesday night’s final should be a beauty. Results next week.

Traveled to Gunstock Mountain in Guilford, N.H. last weekend with my wife to see SoulFest. The concert included incredible singers like Jordan Feliz, Big Daddy Weave, Toby Mac, Rebecca St. James, Colton Dixon and a southern rocker named Crowder who made hillbilly music rock! Had a blast. Even the governor made a cameo on stage.

Told you last week that the Sox looked unbeatable. Sadly, they made me look good.

Happy birthday wishes to my brother Vince, who happens to be one of the smartest people I know. Also Valerie Smith, Shirley Smith (no relation), Daniel Goodrow, Joe Gangel, Olivia DiMambro and Kate LaMarche Fitts. Happy anniversary, Josh and Sara Stark.