Preiss Was a Triple Winner in Meet With Harborfields

On Monday, Preiss won the 50-yard freestyle, in 24.92 seconds, won the 100 free, in 54.02, and anchored the winning 400 free relay in 53.44
Shannon Ryan was pitted against her sister, Marikate, in the 100-yard breaststroke. Jack Graves

    The Harborfields High School girls swimming team proved to be too powerful for East Hampton’s in Monday’s league opener at the Y.M.C.A. East Hampton RECenter, though there was plenty of good news for the young Bonackers, who were led by Marina Preiss, one of the state’s best swimmers.

    On Monday, Preiss won the 50-yard freestyle, in 24.92 seconds, won the 100 free, in 54.02, and anchored the winning 400 free relay in 53.44.

    John McGeehan, East Hampton’s coach, said afterward that Preiss, who is to make a recruiting visit to San Diego State this week (and who recently returned from a similar visit to Florida International), had, with her 54.02, bettered her previous-best 54.20, which had qualified her for the state meet in that event.

    Her 24.92, said McGeehan, was just shy of the state-qualifying time in the 50, “by eight-hundredths of a second . . . she’ll get it.”

    Morgan German, a senior — as is Preiss — who swims the 100 butterfly, 500 free, and in relays for East Hampton, was missing that day, having gone to look at colleges in eastern Pennsylvania. “Though even if Morgan had been here, it wouldn’t have been enough,” said McGeehan. “Harborfields is a powerful team, perhaps the most powerful in the league.”

    Harborfields won the meet 87.5-71.5, though the visitors forwent points that would have been theirs in the 100 backstroke, the 100 breaststroke, and in the final relay. “We all do that,” said McGeehan, “rather than run up scores. . . . Winning is nice, but somewhat beside the point given the fact that the girls are shooting for the county and state meets. Swimming’s an individual and a team sport, and I do like to emphasize the team aspect.”

    Thus he had Shannon Ryan and Marikate Ryan, who normally wouldn’t do so, go head-to-head in the 100 breaststroke. Marikate wound up winning (earning the team 6 points) “although Shannon led her out of the final turn.” Marikate Ryan’s time was 1:23.40. Shannon Ryan’s runner-up finish, in 1:24.56, was worth 4 points.

    “Another interesting thing about that race,” said McGeehan, “was [eighth grader] Vanessa Betancur’s 1:24.28. She was disqualified for having touched the wall with only one hand on the first turn, but, otherwise, she would have been second.”

    Betancur, said the coach, was one of a number of promising youngsters on this team — Marikate Ryan, Cecilia De Havenon, and Isabella Swanson being some others.

    De Havenon’s performances on Monday were notable. The ninth grader won the 100 backstroke in 1:07.82, just shy of the county qualifying time of 1:07.58, swam the winning 400 relay team’s third leg, and placed third in the 100 free.

    Swanson was fourth in the 100 fly, in 1:09.16, “her best thus far,” according to McGeehan, “less than one second from the county qualifying time.”

    Swanson, Lindsey Stevens, and the Ryans made up East Hampton’s third-place 200 freestyle relay team.

    Sayville, another strong team, is to vie in a meet here today. East Hampton will be 2-1 over all going into it.

    In other East Hampton High School sports this past week, the field hockey team, which has been competitive, but whose playoff chances seem problematic at the moment, lost twice — to Harborfields, in a shootout, and to Shoreham-Wading River, in a 7-on-7 overtime period.

    The Harborfields game was tied at 1-1 at the end of regulation. Amanda Calabrese’s corner play goal, assisted by Casey Waleko, got the Bonackers on the scoreboard first, but the visitors replied in kind.

    The 10-minute 7-on-7 O.T. ended without a score, bringing on the one-on-one shootout, with each team alternating shooters, who, having been allotted 10 seconds, dribbled in on the opposing team’s goalie from the 25-yard line.

    Kathryn Wood, East Hampton’s second to go (after Cecelia Fioriello had missed and a Harborfields aerial dribbler had deked Bonac’s goalie, Leonella Acevedo), beat the visitors’ goalie, but her angled shot hit the near side of the cage.

    Acevedo, facing another aerial dribbler, saved the next one, though Calabrese too came up empty-handed. Following another Acevedo save, Alyssa Bahel evened the count, following the rebound of her shot into the cage.

    Samantha Gray, who had scored Harborfields’ goal in regulation, then clinched the win for the visitors, stepping around a prone Acevedo to tap in the ball that Acevedo had unsuccessfully tried to clear.

    East Hampton had yet another chance to tie, but a shot by Shannen McCaffrey, East Hampton’s fifth shooter, was parried. It was a disappointing loss inasmuch as East Hampton would have been awarded power points had it won.

    As of Tuesday, the 5-4 Bonackers were in eighth place among Division III’s 13 teams. Only three of the seven Class B teams are to advance to the county playoffs.

Samantha Gray, who had scored Harborfields’ goal in regulation, was to clinch the shootout when East Hampton’s goalie, Leonella Acevedo, couldn’t quite clear the rebound of Gray’s initial one-on-one shot. Craig Macnaughton