By TJ Millman
Members of the Milford Bucs Swim Team made the annual trip up to the University of Delaware this past weekend to swim in the DIAA State Championships. Individual Qualifiers were Mason Sauers, Ryan Mackesey, Ben Sobota, Sydney Millman, and Brea Wells. Junior Stone Davis also qualified but was unable to swim due to injury. Aside from the individual qualifiers, Allie Benton, Emma Sekscinski, Emily Morgan, Bryce Wells, and Kevin Rossetti each competed on Milford’s relay teams.
Each of Milford’s athletes swam some of their best times on the year, but it was only junior Ben Sobota who made it out of the preliminary rounds. Sobota qualified to the final of the 50 freestyle, and to the consolation final (9th-16th) for the 100 freestyle. In his qualifier for the 50 freestyle, Sobota broke the long-standing school record previously held by Stuart Barr. Sobota’s time of 22.32 will go up on the record board next season and is a testament to all of his hard work.
“Ben worked so hard this season to drop his 50 free time, and he has proven that he deserves his name on the record board at the pool. He is one of those kids who you can tell has his heart into swimming, and that makes him a great leader,” Milford Head Coach Jenna Dodd said.
Sobota finished 6th in Saturday’s final for the 50 freestyle, and first, for a 9th overall, in the 100 freestyle consolation final. Milford will have Sobota for one more year, but for seniors Sydney Millman, Brea Wells, and Kevin Rossetti, this was their last time swimming for Milford High School.
“For me it is especially hard to say goodbye to the seniors this year, because this is the group I started coaching with. I have seen so much growth in each and every one of them in the last 4 years, not only as athletes, but also as people. Sydney Millman and Brea Wells really stepped up as captains this year, and they gave it their all in the pool. I believe they helped shape this team, because they showed the underclassmen what is expected of them,” Dodd said.
The Bucs finished the season with a 5-5 record for the boys and a 6-4 record for the girls. The boys finished third in the Henlopen South, and the girls finished second. Outside of their achievements, Dodd was happy with the growth of every one of her swimmers.
“As a coach, all we want is to see the kids do their best. When they drop a significant amount of time from the beginning to the end of the season, I can’t help but be proud. Yes, I give them the workouts, but they are the ones who decide whether they want to push themselves to get there. This season we had several swimmers who got in the pool everyday and truly pushed themselves whether it was to make a state time or just to drop a few seconds,” Dodd said.
Dodd was also impressed with all of the athletes who competed at the state tournament.
“Swimming really is a sport filled with amazing well rounded kids. The whole state of Delaware competed in the DIAA State Championships, and I couldn’t help but be amazed by the sportsmanship shown from swimmers, coaches, and parents from all of the Delaware teams,” Dodd said.
This marks the end of the 2018 season for the Bucs, and only graduating 6 seniors, the future is bright for a young Bucs team on the rise.
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