Cary-Grove girls swim to victory in FVC Championships

WOODSTOCK – Cary-Grove demonstrated its present and likely future dominance in winning the girls swimming Fox Valley Conference Championships on Saturday at Woodstock North.

The Trojans' Becca Elrod won the 200-yard individual medley (2:14.05) and 500 freestyle (5:20.92) and won co-MVP honors with McHenry’s Michaela Matthys. Elrod, a freshman, also was named Newcomer of the Year.

C-G brought just nine swimmers to the meet, three of them freshmen, to win with 215 points. The Jacobs-Hampshire co-op was second with 218, followed by Huntley (191) and Woodstock co-op (172).

“We really wanted to do well as a team,” Elrod said. “We’re really proud that we won with nine swimmers.”

After getting edged by Jacobs by two-tenths of a second in the 200 medley relay, the Trojans came back to win the next three events. Ashlynn Baker won the 200 freestyle (2:00.91), followed in second by teammate Karsen Seeger (2:02.30). Seeger and Baker, both freshmen, also were on the winning 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams.

After Elrod’s win in the IM, C-G’s Hannah Weber won the 50 freestyle (25.29). Trojans coach Scott Lattyak said the difference in the meet was their ability to have both swimmers in an event do well. C-G had eight top-three finishers and placed two in the top seven in four of the eight individual events.

“That was a big confidence boost,” Lattyak said of getting off to a fast start. “We didn’t really have a whole lot of weak spots.”

Also winning for C-G was Melissa Rose in the 100 breaststroke (1:05.91). Rose, who has qualified for state the past two seasons, shattered the state qualifying time by more than two seconds with a personal best time. Last year at state, her time would have gotten her into the consolation finals.

With freshmen winning three events and helping to win two relays, C-G could be the team to beat in the FVC for the next several years.

“It’s definitely a good sign,” Lattyak said. “We can expect big things in the future.”

Matthys won the 100 backstroke (1:01.50) and swam under the state cut to win the 100 butterfly (58.76). Matthys, a senior, is looking to qualify for state for the first time. Even after swimming under the state cut several times this season, she does not want to get overconfident heading into the Vernon Hills Sectional on Saturday.

“I have a lot more confidence because I’ve gotten it four times,” Matthys said. “But there’s always a little bit of doubt that you have to push through.”

Also winning was Jacobs’ Nicole Sanchez in the 100 freestyle (55.23).