- Name: Malden Croken Crocs
- Award: Crocs earn 3 New England Swimming titles
The Malden Croken Crocs clinch 3 New England Swimming Titles.
The Malden Crocs recently competed against 60 New England area teams at the New England Swimming Championships held at Harvard University. After re-starting the team 6 years ago with only 32 swimmers and no District qualifiers, the Crocs improve to a team of 131 swimmers with 18 New England qualifiers and 3 New England titles.
The Malden Croken Crocs are turning heads, and for good reason. The team just finished their season as a top team to beat in New England. The Crocs set the tone right away as Vivian Nguyen, a 7th grader at the Beebe school, swam to a first place finish in the 50 Butterfly. Vivian, who was the Eastern Mass. District Champion in this event, entered the New England meet seeded 4th. She knew that the competition would be fierce and swam to a personal best time of 28.15, good enough to take first place and the Crocs first ever New England title.
The next great swim of the meet came in the 200 Medley Relay. The 11-12 year old girls relay team of Amy Trinh, Soukaina Hattal, Maddy Hughes and Vivian Nguyen swam to a 2nd place finish with a time of 2:01.85. This race was bitter sweet as the relay team, who also placed 2nd at the Eastern Mass. District Championships, beat their Massachusetts’ rivals the Northshore Sharks, but fell to a strong team from Connecticut.
Vivian continued her individual success with a 2nd place finish in the 100 Butterfly (1:04.06) and then captured her second New England title with a first place finish in the 50 Free (26.23). Maddy Hughes, a 6th grader at the Melrose Middle School, tallied up some points as well. She placed 6th in the 200 Free with a personal best time of 2:10.71. On the boys side, Joe Connolly, also a student at the Melrose Middle School, swam to a 2nd place finish in the 50 Backstroke. Joe was seeded 8th in this event and surprised the rest of the field when he cruised into 2nd place from the outside lane with a time of 30.11. Joe also accomplished a personal goal when, for the first time, he broke 30 seconds in the 50 Fly. Joe took 7th in that race with a time of 29.36.
The 3rd and final title came the next evening at the 13-14 boys session. The boys began the meet with a 3rd place finish in the 200 Medley Relay besting their time from Districts by over a second. Though the boys struggled through some ailments during the middle of the meet, they showed great resiliance and toughness, as Ryan Luu, Damir Durakovic, Kelvin Nguyen, and Tristar To all posted personal best splits in the 200 Free Relay. Their relay team captured the Crocs' first ever New England relay title shedding over 3 seconds off their Districts times.
The Malden Croken Crocs is a 130-member swim team, aged 5-18. The Crocs offer nine practice groups split up by age and ability. The coaching staff is committed to helping every child realize a life-long love of swimming. All improvements and achievements are celebrated, whether it is dropping time to qualify for New Englands or finally learning to dive in head-first.
The Crocs also compete against local teams during the summer as well as prepare swimmers to compete in the Bay State Games. For more information, contact the YMCA Aquatics Office at 781-324-7680 ext. 214
Top Individual Finishes:
Vivian Nguyen (11-12 Girls)- 1st in the 50 Fly (28.15), 1st in the 50 Free (26.23), and 2nd in the 100 Fly (1:04.06).
Joe Connolly (11-12 Boys) – 2nd in the 50 Back (30.11), 5th in the 200 IM (2:25.95), and 7th in the 50 Fly (29.36).
Tristar To (13-14 Boys)- 4th in the 50 Free (23.70), and 19th in the 100 Free (54.58).
Nathan Nguyen (8 under Boys)- 5th in the 25 Back (18.94), 8th in the 50 free (34.87), and 17th in the 25 Fly (18.73).
Maddy Hughes (11-12 Girls) – 6th in the 200 Free (2:10.71), 11th in the 50 Free (27.71) and 17th in the 100 Free (1:00.30).
Tracy Lam (8 under Girls) 9th in the 100 IM (1:31.47).
Amy Trinh (11-12 Girls) – 13th in the 50 Back (32.41), and 15th in the 50 Breast (36.24).
Ryan Luu (13-14 Boys) – 14th in the 100 Fly (59.28), 15th in the 200 IM (2:16.58) and 17th in the 100 Breast (1:10.55).
Sophia Souza (8 under Girls) 15th in the 25 back (19.69) and 23rd in the 25 Fly (18.37)
Soukaina Hattal (11-12 Girls) – 20th in the 50 Breast (36.53).
Kevin Ochoa (9-10 Boys) – 21st in the 100 Fly (1:30.59)
Top Relay Finishes:
R. Luu, Damir Durakovic, Kelvin Nguyen, T. To (13-14 Boys) 1st in the 200 Free Relay (1:39.32)
K. Nguyen, Justin Kwan, R. Luu, T. To (13-14 Boys) 3rd in the 200 Medley Relay (1:50.52)
A. Trinh, S. Hattal, V. Nguyen, M. Hughes (11-12 Girls) - 2nd in the 200 Medley Relay (2:01.85).
M. Hughes, S. Hattal, A. Trinh, V. Nguyen (11-12 Girls) – 9th in the 200 Free Relay (1:54.11).
Akshara Shankar, T. Lam, S. Souza, Gelila Lemma (8 under Girls) - 12th in the 100 Medley Relay (1:22.19).
T. Lam, G. Lemma, A. Shankar, S. Souza (8 under Girls) - 16th in the 100 Free Relay (1:13.00).