The Christian Brothers Academy swim team earned a convincing 108-68 victory over visiting rivals Bridgewater-Raritan on Thursday night at the Neptune Aquatic Center.
The Colts won six out of 11 events, and improved their record to 7-1 in one of their biggest meets of the season to establish themselves as the top boys swim team in the state.
“I’m really proud of our guys today,” CBA coach Vito Chiaravalloti said. “They stepped up to a huge challenge, and at the Westfield meet, they knew they didn’t swim their best, so they wanted to come here and beat this team.”
CBA took the lead right out of the gate, winning the 200-yard medley relay in 1:34.68. The winning team consisted of Rob Whitacre, Alex D’Anna, Dean Shafritz, and Josh Berger.
Bridgewater-Raritan (7-1) answered with a win in the 200 freestyle by Jason Tan, who finished in 1:45.74. CBA’s Ed Healy settled for a second-place finish in 1:46.01.
The Panthers won the next two events to cut CBA’s lead to 33-29. Dylan Sali won the 200 individual medley in (1:55.02) and Jesse Novak won the 50 freestyle (21.53).
Shafritz earned CBA’s first individual event win of the night in the 100 butterfly. He finished in 52.00, ahead of his teammate Matt Zebrowski (53.55).
Novak won his second event for in the 100 freestyle. He swam a 47.34, just ahead of Whitacre (47.71) to cut CBA’s lead to 54-40.
CBA’s Stephen Benvenuto dominated the 500 freestyle (4:46.30), with his closest competitor Healy finishing almost 10 seconds behind him (4:56.19).
The Colts won the 200 freestyle relay with D’Anna, Ryan Andresen, Chris Tucker, and Josh Berger swimming a 1:28.84, to give CBA a commanding 77-47 lead.
With three events remaining, Sali tried to inch his team closer on the scoreboard by winning his second event of the night in the 100 backstroke (50.09). Whitacre placed second finishing almost three seconds behind in (52.44).
In the 100 breaststroke, D’Anna grabbed the top spot with a 58.49 finish.
The Colts, having already sealed a win, won the 400 freestyle relay in 3:18.02. CBA’s winning team comprised of Berger, Healy, Tucker and Andresen.
“I think you have to be a little surprised with how many points we scored,” Chiaravalloti said. “But I know what my team is capable of and winning relays played a big part, and it really set the tone for us.”
CBA will be back in action on January 24, when it hosts division rivals Middletown South at 4 p.m.