Madison Boys Swim Loses Quarterfinals To Rutherford, Still Break Team Record


Kerry Cozzolino

Freshman Anuthra Abeysinghe swims a breaststroke race.

Yanyan Li, Staff Writer

The Madison Boys Swim lost in the New Jersey Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) North 2 Group C quarterfinal round to Rutherford on Thursday with a score of 100-70, which effectively ended their season. However, there were still some fast swims accomplished at the meet, including a team record.

Junior Owen Weller, freshman Anuthra Abeysinghe, senior Justin Lee, and senior Artha Abeysinghe broke the record for the 200 yard medley relay in a time of 1:44.41, a hundredth of a second faster than the previous record set by the same group of swimmers just a few weeks ago at Morris County Championships.

This season, the Dodger boys have broken relay records four times, including the two instances mentioned above as well as the 400 freestyle relay in both meters and yards.

The Dodgers also won the 200-yard freestyle relay, with Anuthra Abeysinghe, Artha Abeysinghe, senior Doyle Keane, and freshman Jacques Chemaly taking the event in a time of 1:37.63.

Although the boys did not win any individual events at this meet, there were many impressive performances by the Dodgers throughout all events.

Anuthra Abeysinghe finished in second in the 100-yard breaststroke, swimming a team-leading time of 1:06.49 that was faster than the 1:07.19 he swam at counties. This season, he became the first swimmer to go under the 1:08 mark in the event since team-record holder Michael Lee, who graduated after the 2019-20 season.

Senior Sterling Hart finished fifth in the 100-yard freestyle, but his time of 59.05 marked the first time he had broken a minute in the event, making it a milestone achievement for him. Artha Abeysinghe finished second in the same event with a time of 52.77, which was a season-best time for him.

Senior Doyle Keane and Nick Modi both swam best times in the 50-yard freestyle, finishing 4th and 6th with times of 25.43 and 26.43 respectively. 

Owen Weller lost the 100-yard backstroke by just a tenth of a second, finishing second with a time of 56.05. This was his fastest time at a high school meet, and was faster than the 56.16 time he swam to finish in the top six at counties. His time is the fastest he has been at a high school meet, and faster than the 56.16 he swam to finish in the top six at Counties. Weller also finished second in the 200 yard individual medley with a time of 2:04.52.

Jacques Chemaly took second in the 200 and 500-yard freestyle in times of 1:53.88 and 5:16.86 respectively, which made him the fastest swimmer on the team in the mid-distance events (200 and 400/500 freestyle) across both yards and meters.

Justin Lee was second in the 50 yard freestyle and 100 yard butterfly, going times of 23.76 and 57.85 respectively.

Overall, this meet was still a successful meet for the Dodgers despite the loss, and a great way to commemorate the seniors who got to swim their last races.