Many Close Races As Speed Demons Swim With Sharks


FULTON, NY – Close races marked the Fulton YMCA Speed Demons’ first road meet of the season, against the Watertown YMCA Sharks at Watertown High School’s pool on Saturday, Nov. 10.

One race was so close that it could not be decided by timers using stopwatches accurate to a hundredth of a second. In the 25 yard breaststroke for girls aged 5-8, Speed Demon Rachel LeVea was awarded first place by a judge’s decision.

In the 200 yard freestyle race for 13-14 year old boys, Scott Bullard missed 1st and took 2nd place by 0.85 seconds but took 2nd place over 3rd by 0.30 seconds. Bullard missed 2nd place and took 3rd in the 500 yard freestyle race — the longest competition in swimming meets — by 0.22 seconds.

Other close races included:

  • E girls 25 freestyle – Sabrina Verdoliva missed 1st and took 2nd place by 0.13 seconds
  • D girls 50 backstroke – Kaitlyn Trudell took 1st by 0.39 seconds
  • D girls 50 breaststroke – Kellie Gorman missed 2nd and took 3rd by 0.82 seconds
  • C girls 50 freestyle – Hannah Smith took 3rd over 4th by 0.60 seconds
  • C boys 50 backstroke – Austin Curtis missed 2nd and took 3rd by 0.79 seconds
  • A boys 100 backstroke – Tim Walrath won by 0.20 seconds

Teams are divided according to age (ages 5-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, 15-18) and sex into 10 groups. The winning age groups during the meet included E boys, C girls, A girls and A boys.

“We won four age groups,” said Cathy Peterson, the team’s coach for 28 years.

The following swimmers took first place in their individual events:

  • E girls – Lexi MacDonald, Sabrina Verdoliva, Rachel LeVea
  • E boys – Jacob May (2), Chris Smith
  • D girls – Aliyah Conner (2), Kaitlyn Trudell (2)
  • C girls – Janelle Tallents (2), Courtney Beckwith
  • B girls – Miranda Perry, Rachel Guernsey
  • A girls – Alexis Semeraro, Devon Niccoli
  • A boys – Sean Caltabiano, Anthony Walrath (2), Tim Walrath (2), Ben Davis, Matt Benton

The following swimmers posted personal best times in all individual events:

  • E girls – Rachel LeVea, Katie Curtis, Caitlyn McAfee, Ashley Mills, Sabrina Verdoliva, Sarah Tallents
  • E boys – Chris Smith
  • D girls – Kaitlyn Trudell, Kate Thompson, Bryanna Tanner, Bailey Reading
  • D boys – Keegan Condon, Kyle Buck, Brandon Webb, Tim McAfee
  • C girls – Grace Trepasso, Janelle Tallents, Hannah Smith, Lacey Reich
  • C boys – Steven Gilliland, Tobey Mills
  • B girls – Rachel Guernsey
  • A girls – Cassandra Gardner, Devon Niccoli, Barbara Bortoletto
  • A boys – Tim Walrath, Nick Runeare

Five individual swimmers qualified to swim in the New York YMCA State Meet in March. Swimmers qualify for states by bringing in times under the qualifying standard in individual events. This week’s qualifiers included:

  • Molly Heagerty – 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly
  • Devon Niccoli – 100 freestyle
  • Barbara Bortoletto – 100 backstroke
  • Anthony Walrath – 100 freestyle
  • Tim Walrath – 100 backstroke

The team also welcomed Ashley McCann to her first meet.

Swimmers of the week include: Katie Curtis, Caitlyn McAfee, Ashley Mills, Sabrina Verdoliva, Rachel LeVea, Chris Smith, Kaitlyn Trudell, Kate Thompson, Bryanna Tanner, Bailey Reading, Kyle Buck, Tim McAfee, Brandon Webb, Janelle Tallents, Lacey Reich, Grace Trepasso, Hannah Smith, Tobey Mills, Steven Gilliland, Rachel Guernsey, Devon Niccoli, Barb Bortoletto, Cassandra Gardner, Nick Runeare and Tim Walrath

The Speed Demons’ next meet will be Saturday at Oneonta High School. Warm-ups are at 11 a.m. and the meet will begin at noon.

The Fulton YMCA Speed Demons are a community-based swim team that competes in the Central New York region of the New York State Y Swimming League. Team members come from Fulton, Hannibal, Phoenix and other communities in the area. The team stresses individual improvement as part of a team’s effort.

For more information about the Fulton YMCA Speed Demon community swim team, visit the team’s Web site at

Junior Swimmers
Junior Swimmers of the Week: From left are (front) Caitlyn McAfee, Katie Curtis, Chris Smith, (second row) Sabrina Verdoliva, (third row) Kate Thompson, Rachel LeVea, Tim McAfee, (fourth row) Ashley Mills, Bryanna Tanner, Grace Trepasso, Brandon Webb, (back) Bailey Reading, Kaitlyn Trudell and Kyle Buck.
senior swimmers
Senior Swimmers of the Week: From left are (front) Lacey Reich, Steven Gilliland, Hannah Smith, (second row) Janelle Tallents, Rachel Guernsey, Devon Niccoli, (third row) Cassandra Gardner, Barbara Bortoletto, (back) Tim Walrath and Nick Runeare.