MECHANICSBURG — Brandon Bush waited a whole year, and it was worth it.
Brandon Bush of Upper Moreland had the honor of winning the area’s first gold medal of the PIAA Class 2A boys swimming and diving competition.
Bush, a junior, posted a score of 396.35 points to win diving, held last Saturday at Cumberland Valley High School.
He was among the many athletes who arrived at the 2020 competition at Bucknell, only to be told to leave because of the statewide coronavirus shutdown.
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“It was great to actually be here and get to compete,” Bush said. “This makes up for last year big time. Last year I was able to warm up but then we had to leave, and that wasn’t fun.
“I practiced the last two weeks the best I could so I know I prepared myself. Just being here and being able to warm up with the guys was fun.”
Due to COVID, the field was smaller than in past seasons so the meet went at a much quicker pace than usual.
“That didn’t bother me,” Bush said. “I still got to warm up all my dives, and I felt comfortable. All my front dives, I felt like I was pretty consistent with my hurdle, and all my back stuff I felt good about. I was really proud of my inward double. I just got that two weeks ago.
“This gives me so much confidence for next year, and hopefully we’ll have a non-COVID season. I’m looking forward to that.”
The Class 2A swimming competition was held on Friday, also at Cumberland Valley.
John Devaney of New Hope-Solebury picked up a pair of bronze medals. He was third in the 100 freestyle (46.95) and tied for third in the 50 freestyle with Patrick Hemingway of Bishop McDevitt (District 3). Both posted times of 20.79.
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“I’m a little disappointed in my times,” said Devaney, a senior who swims as an independent because New Hope doesn’t have a swim team. “I trained really hard, and I thought I’d go faster, especially in the 100. I didn’t drop that much time.”
Devaney reached the consolation finals of both events his sophomore year, but didn’t get to swim last year due to COVID.
“I’m definitely happy they had the meet this year,” he said. “When we were lining up to swim, the guys I was with were all saying we had it taken away last year so we have to make it last, and that was a great reminder on the deck to be grateful.”
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Archbishop Wood competed in a number of individual events and relays.
Matthew Smith finished 10th in the 200 individual medley (1:58.83) and 14th in the 100 backstroke (53.77), Andrew Lips was 16th in the 100 freestyle (53.50), Aidan Lynskey took 16th in the 500 freestyle (5:23.06)
Wood’s 200 medley relay of Smith, Lynskey, Robert Fredricksdorf and Lips finished 15th (1:47.44) and Lips, Lynskey, Fredricksdorf and Smith teamed up to take 15th in the 400 freestyle relay (3:30.57).
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Ryan O’Rourke of Lansdale Catholic finished off his high school career with a 13th place finish in the 100 breaststroke (1:01.18).
Bloomsburg Area’s Bryant LaCroix finished in a tie for second in the 100 butterfly with Isaac Griffith of Indiana with a time of 50.54, which lowers LaCroix’s own school record. He was also third in the 100 backstroke (50.50). A senior, he is the son of former Bensalem standout Chuck LaCroix, a member of Bensalem’s 1980 District One championship team and the current head coach at Bloomsburg.