Greyhounds persevere in season without a home

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Naugatuck's Madison Wilson was part of the Greyhounds’ 200 free relay team with Alexandra Silva, Erica Spino and Rachel Fox that finished 15th at the Class L state championship meet with a time of 1:53.78.  -RA ARCHIVE
Naugatuck’s Madison Wilson was part of the Greyhounds’ 200 free relay team with Alexandra Silva, Erica Spino and Rachel Fox that finished 15th at the Class L state championship meet with a time of 1:53.78. -RA ARCHIVE

MIDDLETOWN — Naugatuck sophomore Cara Rotatori produced one of the best times in the history of Naugy girls swimming to highlight the Greyhounds’ performance at last week’s Class L state championship meet.

Rotatori, who earned All-Naugatuck Valley League honors on Sunday, took 24th among the best swimmers in the state in the 100-yard backstroke event. Her preliminary time of 1 minute, 5.68 seconds marked the seventh-fastest finish in school history in the event.

“I’m so happy for Cara,” Naugy head coach Jim McKee said. “She’s worked hard.”

Elizabeth Walsh, who was also awarded all-league status, was one of several other Greyhounds to qualify for the states. Walsh swam with Rotatori, Tattiana Serrano and Barbara Martins in the 400 freestyle relay and finished 14th overall in 4:11.27.

Naugatuck was up against some of the best teams in the state, relegating the ‘Hounds to an 18th-place finish of 21 teams. The winner of the Class L meet, Darien, also won the State Open meet. In addition, the top three finishers in the Class L placed in the Open meet’s top four.

“The competition is just incredible at the state level,” McKee said. “A lot of these kids swim year-round.”

The 18-member swim team that completed the season for the Greyhounds persevered, according to their coach. Naugy was without a pool due to renovations and had to travel to Woodland in Beacon Falls each day for practice, which usually ended around 8 p.m.

“This was a very challenging season for us,” said McKee, who credited each member of the team for working through tough circumstances. “I was pleased with the times we put up.”

The Greyhounds had two other relay teams participate at the Class L meet. Alexandra Silva, Madison Wilson, Erica Spino and Rachel Fox placed 15th in the 200 free relay in 1:53.78.

Rotatori, Martins, Wilson and Serrano finished 17th in the medley relay in 2:06.74.

Class L’s top 36 swimmers from the qualifying meet move to the finals, with no more than four participants allowed from each school in one event. The top 24 finishers in the finals are awarded points for their school.

Martins and Silva also qualified in the 100 breaststroke, but did not finish high enough to score.

Naugatuck finished with 69 points to place 18th. Kennedy, the only other NVL team in the Class L competition, placed 20th.