Swimming and diving: Shelton bests Seymour after layoff

Shelton High kicked off a busy stretch of meets in a short time on a positive note, with a 98-66 triumph over Seymour at the Shelton Community Center last Tuesday.

The Gaels were in the pool for the first time following an off day on Sunday and a lost practice due to icy conditions Monday, but Shelton coach Tom Jurzynski liked his team’s efforts which included some personal best times.

“Your body changes if you don’t do this for a few days,” said Jurzynski, adding that body weight increase and tightness from not being in the water can negatively impact swimmers. “Everyone swam pretty well today. It’s pretty tough to come back after two days off and jump into a meet.”

Swimmers continued to trend in a time-lowering direction despite the brief layoff.

Rajan Caccam had a career-best time in the 100 yard butterfly race, finishing in 1:04.28, dropping more than two seconds off his season time coming into the meet. That was good for fourth place.

Caccam also logged a season-best in the backstroke race, trimming time off his 1:06.74 mark coming in. A touchpad malfunction prevented accurate result time from his race.

Jai Goel recorded his career best in the 200 freestyle race with a first-place time of 1:59.24. Goel also had his career best performance in the 100 butterfly by placing third in 1:03.75.

With Shelton having a stronger team than Seymour, Jurzynski moved some of his swimmers around a bit to make for more competitive races.

Shelton’s 200 yard medley relay team of Korey Barber, Matt Christiano, Matt Balcerzak and Matt Richard was first in 1:49.38.

The Gaels also had the third-place 200 medley relay squad as Caccan, Ian Tyler, Adam Krzywosz and Brendan Smith finished in 2:12.98.

Carson Rhodes placed second in the 200 free with a time of 2:10.46. Ben Van Tine followed in third with a time of 2:15.88.

Christiano came in second in the 200 individual medley, making his final touch in 2:15.30. Tyler came in third in 2:42.35.

In the 50 free, Balcerzak came in second in 24.47 and Richard was third in 25.15.

Barber won the 100 butterfly in 55.43.

Christiano and Richard were second and third in the 100 freestyle with times of 54.52 and 56.89.

Balcerzak won the 500, clocking in at 5:49.62. Tyler placed second in the 500 in 6:10.08.

Shelton’s 200 free relay of Barber, Richard, Christiano and Balcerzak was first in 1:38.32.

The 200 free relay team of Goel, Kenny Walsh, Rhodes and Van Tine was third with a time of 1:46.33.

Barber took first in the 100 backstroke in 1:01.33. Eric Gurski was third in 1:07.34.

Rhodes placed second in the 100 breaststroke event in 1:13.12. Kryzwosz was third in 1:24.65.

The Gaels swam exhibition in the 400 free relay and Shelton’s best time was turned in by Walsh, Goel, Caccam and Rhodes (3:54.16).

“This is a tough stretch for us,” said Jurzynski, whose team is in the midst of six meets in a little over two weeks.

Shelton, after hosting Cheshire on Friday, Notre Dame-West Haven on Monday and Amity of Woodbridge on Thursday, has its sixth straight home meet when Fairfield Prep visits on Tuesday at 3:30.

The Gaels visit Xavier of Middletown two days later; the Feb. 7 meet is slated for 7:30.

Then there is a week off before the regular-season finale Feb. 14 when Hamden visits the Community Center at 3:30.