Swimming: Pumas stay perfect, capture NBL title

By HOWARD SENZELL
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

Maria Carrillo's Piper Brockley competes in the 100 meter breast stroke Thursday in a dual meet against Montgomery High at the Ridgway Swim Center. (John Burgess/The Press Democrat)

Maria Carrillo’s Piper Brockley competes in the 100 meter breast stroke Thursday in a dual meet against Montgomery High at the Ridgway Swim Center. (John Burgess/The Press Democrat)

Maria Carrillo wrapped up a perfect dual meet season on Thursday as both the boys and girls squads came away victorious over Montgomery at Ridgway Swim Center.

The boys had an easier time of it as they won, 128-54, while the girls prevailed by a score of 103-82.

Not only did Maria Carrillo win all eight of its dual meets, the Pumas also captured the North Bay League trophy for the second year in a row.

Piper Brockley led the girls with wins in the 200 individual medley and 100 breaststroke while junior Shannon Fong doubled for the boys in the 50 and 100 freestyle.

Brockley, who is a freshman, has the ability to follow in the footsteps of 2009 Pumas grad Maya DiRado. While at Carrillo, DiRado won state championships.

In 2012, she just missed qualifying for the U.S. Olympic team. DiRado is now a junior and swims for Stanford.

Brockley’s times in the breaststroke are close to qualifying her for the 2016 Olympic Trials. On Thursday, she covered the 100 yards in 1:07.34 and defeated runner-up Kayla Frank by nearly 10 seconds.

“She has a lot of doors open to her if she continues to train hard,” coach Dave Pfeiff said. “She’s a stud.”

Brockley began swimming competitively in the seventh grade and now competes for the Neptunes, a club team.

“I’m really happy I’m doing so well as a freshman,” she said. “I’m used to swimming competitively because with the Neptunes I swim 51 weeks a year. The only time off we get is the first week of school.”

Brockley’s immediate goals are to win the breaststroke at the NBL Meet on May 11 and finish among the top eight at North Coast Section on May 17-18 in Concord.

Montgomery also had two swimmers double on Thursday. Jenna Bauer took the 200 freestyle and 100 backstroke while Danielle Illing prevailed in the 50 and 100 freestyle.

Bauer, the reigning All-Empire Swimmer of the Year, won the 200 by 22 seconds over runner-up Emma Barton of Carrillo. In the 100, her margin of victory over Carrillo’s Victoria Le was nearly eight seconds.

Like Brockley, Bauer is pointing for NCS. Last year, as a sophomore, she won silver and bronze medals at that meet.

Illing’s time in the 50 was 26.93 and she completed the 100 in 59.09.

“We did as well as expected against Carrillo,” coach Shelly Kelley said. “They just have a lot more depth. We’re looking forward to the league meet.”

Carrillo has more than 70 swimmers on its varsity and junior varsity rosters while Montgomery has around 40.

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