March 19, 2008


Stingers collect four firsts at state meet

EAST MEADOW, L.I. — The Cortland Stingers were at their best against the toughest competition of the season, coming up with four first finishes at the annual New York State YMCA Swimming Championships.
In a three-day meet that concluded Sunday at the Nassau County Aquatic Center, Scott McLaughlin, Quinn Kennedy and Marton Tozser took individual titles for the Stingers.
The Class C (11-12 year old) 200-yard freestyle relay foursome of Tommy Belton, Lukas Pizzola, Andras Tozser and Zachary Forrest also topped the competition. Those four swimmers, all from Homer, were clocked in 1:48.58 winning time.
“I was very pleased on how our kids hit their taper and dropped a significant amount of time in their events,” said Stingers head coach Mike Falls.
Homer’s McLaughlin won the Class B (13-14) title in the 100-yard breaststroke, coming up with a time of 1:06.81.
Cortland’s Kennedy touched first in the 50-yard breaststroke in the Class D (9-10) age group, turning in a 32.99 time.
Homer’s Marton Tozser was the state champion in Class E (8-and-Under) when he led the field in the 25-butterfly with a time of 17.24. He was also third in the 100-yard individual medley in 1:27.70.
Adding a third place at the meet was Madison Bossard for the Stingers. She had a 2:31.28 showing in the 200-yard freestyle in Class D.
Cortland boys finished animpressive third as a team in Class C (11-12) division, this meet that drawing 42 teams from a across the state. There were some 1,300 competitors on hand for the meet, co-hosted by the Flushing Flyers and the Huntington Blue Fish.
“The 11-2 boys taking third in their age group was huge. For four boys to score over 150 points at a state meet is simply awesome,” said Coach Falls of Stingers Lukas Pizzola, Zachary Forrester, Andras Tozser and Thomas Belton. Their best showing was teaming up to grab the second spot in the 200-yard medley relay in 2:06.73.
“Some of the boys dropped three seconds or more in every event that they swam. They definitely stepped up and made this a great meet,” added Falls.
The Stingers had several Top 16 times over the three days of competition, which the locals dedicated to recently deceased for former Cortland coach Dick Williams — who started building the team into a state power back in 1968. The Stingers will continue practice for a few weeks before taking a break heading into the summer program.
With only one graduating senior on this team, Natalie Winters, the Stingers should be strong again next season when they will defend their Central New York dual meet title. The 2009 New York State Championships will hosted by Rochester-area squads next March.
Anyone interested in joining the Stingers for the summer program or the upcoming 2008-09 season can look at the team’s Website at