Alayna Gray leads Section 2 contingent during opening day of state swim meet

ITHACA – Fonda-Johnstown’s Alayna Gray posted the top time in the 50-yard freestyle preliminaries during Day 1 of the New York State Girls Swimming and Diving Championships Friday, Nov. 16, at Ithaca College.

Gray won her heat with an All-American Consideration time of 23.39 seconds to earn the No. 1 seed for Saturday’s championship round. Bethlehem’s Sydney Sorbello also made the cutoff for the championship heat when she posted the ninth-fastest time in preliminaries (23.94).

Gray followed up her 50-yard freestyle performance by posting the fourth-fastest time in the 100-yard freestyle preliminaries at 51.76 seconds. Sorbello qualified for the championship heat of the 100-yard backstroke by posting the fifth-best preliminary time with a mark of 57.18 seconds.

Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk’s Gillian Burch was the only other Section 2 swimmer to qualify for the championship finals in an individual event. Burch earned the No. 8 seed in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:05.11.

Several Section 2 relay teams qualified for the championship finals, led by Bethlehem’s 200-yard freestyle relay. The quartet of Sorbello, Maggie Hartman, Anna Bernasconi and Megan Novak posted the second-fastest preliminary time with a mark of 1:37.17.

Shenendehowa and Bethlehem each qualified for the 200-yard medley relay finals. Shen’s team of Alice Han, Alison Sposili, Shauna Killane and Natasha Sheffer is the No. 6 seed after posting a preliminary round time of 1:49.25, while Bethlehem’s team of Sorbello, Bernasconi, Hartman and Novak grabbed the No. 8 seed with a time of 1:49.31.

Shen’s 400-yard freestyle relay team of Killane, Han, Sposili and Lauren Ostrander made the championship finals as the eighth seed with a preliminary time of 3:36.70.

The 1-meter diving competition took place Friday, with Guilderville’s Evanna Peng and Burnt Hills-Scotia’s Lydia DeLano both posting top-20 finishes. Peng placed 13th with a score of 432.40 points, while DeLano was 15th with a score of 417.30 points. Brighton’s Hannah Butler won the state and Federation titles with a score of 530.60 points.

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