FAIRFIELD — Being a member of the Greenwich boys swimming team is truly a family affair for numerous members of the successful squad.
Several sets of brothers are showcasing their skills on the Cardinals squad and they played a pivotal role in the team’s latest victory.
Using its sibling power, Greenwich ran its record to a perfect 7-0, defeating host Fairfield Prep, 117-64, in a non-conference rivalry match.
“Prep is usually our biggest rival,” Cardinals senior Jack Jee said. “The intensity was here today, everyone came out and was swimming their hardest.”
Jee competed in the 100-meter butterfly and 100 backstroke, while his brother, Ryan, a sophomore, swam the 200 individual medley and the 100 breaststroke.
“For me, it’s something special,” Jack Jee said. “We both swim on the same club team as well, so usually we both race during practice and it’s good competition. I feel like now that Ryan is on the team he is working well with others, which is nice.”
Jack Jee placed second in the 100 butterfly, while Ryan Jee was the runner-up in the 200-meter individual medley.
“I am happy with how we did, considering we swam in a meters pool,” Ryan Jee said. “That’s kind of a tough conversion, because we swim in a yards pool. But I’m happy with our times. With all these meets we’re having back-to-back, it will be interesting to see if we can hold these times.”
Junior Alex Plavoukos finished third in the 200-meter freestyle for Greenwich against the Jesuits and was also third in the 500 freestyle. His brother, Spencer, a senior, raced in the 100 butterfly.
“It’s great, especially being brothers, we get to compete with each other each practice and each meet, so it’s really one of the reasons we can go so fast,” Spencer Plavoukos said. “One of the reasons why we can go so fast, is because we are not only competing with our teammates, we are competing with our brothers. It’s a really nice dynamic on the team.”
Said Alex Plavoukos: “It’s pretty cool, ever since we’ve been freshmen, we’ve had this competition at every meet. I swim the butterfly, he swims the butterfly, so we like to see how each other does.”
The meet began with Greenwich’s Justin Jacob, James Pacale, Mark Merson and Nick Malchow combining to win the 200-meter medley relay.
Thomas Cass, a junior, touched the wall first for Greenwich in the 200 freestyle, followed by teammate Nick Todorovic, a senior, and Alex Plavoukos.
Fairfield Prep received a victory in the 200-yard individual medley from senior Richard Nolan (2:08.36). Ryan Jee placed second and GHS senior Thomas Lewis took third in the 200 IM
“I was swimming around some great swimmers there,” Nolan said. “Greenwich always has swimmers coming, so I just have to remember my training and push for everything I have. Year after year, this is one of my favorite meets the whole entire season. Rising up and going up against a team like Greenwich is great.”Read Full Article
Nolan noted the meet was good preparation for the Fairfield Prep heading into the latter part of the season.
“The score may not reflect it, but we had some swimmers down the line putting in best times,” Nolan said. “This is our benchmark meet, we love this meet and this will be our pivot point, moving forward.”
Malchow displayed his strong sprinting skills, topping the competition in the 50 freestyle. Merson was second and senior Charlie Clark finished third for the Cards, who led 45-17 after the 50 freestyle.
Freshman Whitaker Grover continued his successful season on the 1-meter diving board, earning 284.25 points, good for first place. Thomas Kehoe gave Fairfield Prep a second-place showing (223.80) over six dives.
Pascale was the 100 butterfly winner for GHS, with Jack Jee taking second and Prep’s Benjamin Short, placing third. Malchow’s second victory of the meet came in the 100 freestyle and Cass’ second win was in the 500 freestyle. Clark was the runner-up in the 100 freestyle and Nick Todorovic finished second in the 500.
Nick and sophomore Marko Todorovic are another Cardinals brother combination.
“It pushes us, we have a healthy competition in practice,” Nick Todorovic said. “Last year my older brother Stephan was on the team and he graduted, so now Marko came on the team, so there is that same competition among brothers in the pool. We swim the same events a lot, the 200 and 500 freestyle, which is exciting.”
“It is a little intimidating being a part of the team as a sophomore,” Marko Todorovic said. “It’s a different environment and I’m swimming different sets. But as the season has progressed, I have gotten more comfortable. In two more years, I hope to be one of the top guys.”
Greenwich hosts FCIAC rival Ridgefield on Friday. The Tigers topped the Cardinals in 2019 in a dual meet.
“It’s always a good matchup between the two teams,” Ryan Jee said. “It puts everyone to the test.”
Fairfield Prep, meanwhile, hosts SCC foe Xavier on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
“Xavier is very strong, it’s going to be a tough meet,” Prep coach Rick Hutchinson said. “They have an excellent team and we are well aware and ready.”