BEACON FALLS — The Woodland girls swim team entered the season with high expectations. The Hawks haven’t disappointed.
“They’ve met and slightly exceeded [my expectations] primarily based on the times I’ve seen in the beginning of the year,” Woodland head coach Mike Magas said.
Magas said there hasn’t been the typical drop-off from the end of last year as many of the girls are already hitting their best times from last season.
“That has been a pleasant surprise,” he said.
Those times have resulted in a 3-0 start for Woodland. The Hawks earned wins over Jonathan Law (96-81) Sept. 14 and Suffield (99-82) Sept. 16 to open the season. On Tuesday, the Hawks edged out Watertown, 93-90, for the girls first win over the Indians in the history of the program.
Woodland took first in eight of 12 events in the wins over Jonathan Law and Suffield. The Hawks finished first in 10 events versus Watertown.
The Hawks have received a spark from newcomer Dia Gawronski, a junior who transferred to Woodland this year from Cheshire Academy and is making quite a first impression
Gawronski set school records in the 200 IM (2:16.75) and 500 free (5:19.68) versus Jonathan Law, then set a record in the 100 fly (1:01.5) against Suffield.
Versus Watertown, Gawronski took first in the 200 IM (2:16.73) and 100 fly (1:02.63). She’s also an integral part of the team’s relay squads.
“Her work ethic is amazing. She is by far one of the hardest workers I’ve ever seen,” Magas said of Gawronski.
That work ethic is contagious, Magas said, as the other girls are seeing the correlation between working hard and better times.
Gawronski has plenty of help in the pool.
Magas said seniors Tatianna Lynn and Taylor Amore have really stepped up and are right on pace where they left off last year.
Amore was part of the 200 medley relay that finished first (2:06.75) versus Suffield.
Lynn picked up wins in the 100 back (1:13.86) against Jonathan Law as well as the 200 free (2:13.55) and 500 free (6:10.78) against Suffield. She followed that up with wins in the 200 free (2:13.92) and the 500 free (6:04.96) against Watertown.
Magas has also been impressed with juniors Brooke Pope, Jordan Williams, Kyla Drewry and Maddie Hoxie
Pope picked up individual wins in the 50 free (26.78) against Jonathan Law, and the 200 IM (2:41.42) and 100 free (1:00.60) versus Suffield. Hoxie gives the Hawks a presence on the diving board and won the event versus Jonathan Law with a score of 160.95.
Williams and Drewry have made their presence felt with the relay teams. They were part of the 200 medley relay teams that finished first against Watertown and Jonathan Law.
Magas added the team’s nine freshmen, including Casey Brooks, Camille Terrell, Aly Rojcov and Morgan Swift, have come right in to make an impact for the team.
Swift won the 100 breaststroke (1:25.74) against Watertown.
What has stood out the most to Magas is the way the team has jelled this year. As long as they continue working hard, stay focused and hold on to that sense of team unity, Magas expects the Hawks to keep on making waves.
“The positive energy I’ve seen at the meets has been phenomenal this year,” Magas said.
Woodland will host Seymour on Friday before hitting the road to take on Sacred Heart Sept. 27.