Swim proposal on hold
A controversial proposal to phase out the girls’ high school fall swimming season by 2015 has been put on hold. Critics say there’s not enough pool time available to accommodate all boys’ and girls’ swim teams in a single season.
The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association’s Swim Committee was scheduled to meet next week to vote on the proposal, which has come under fire from coaches and officials who say that such a drastic move would overburden facilities and squeeze teams out of pool time. The MIAA subcommittee that authored the proposal was going to meet April 12, but will wait until May 23 to present its findings. “I felt it was prudent for us to review all of the feedback before we go to the full committee,’’ said Raymond Grant, the subcommittee chairman.
The reasoning behind the proposed change was to preserve gender equity in high school swimming.
Last year, several boys qualified to compete in the fall girls’ state tournament, and a boy from Norwood broke a sectional record for the girls’ 50-yard freestyle event.
Boys are allowed to swim with girls in the fall if their school does not offer boys’ swimming. In the winter, there are swim teams for boys and girls, and the MIAA holds separate championships for both genders. But in the fall, the MIAA considers swimming a girls’ sport, and only one state tournament is held – for girls.
After many boys competed in the postseason last fall, the MIAA Swim Committee formed a subcommittee to study the issue. The potential solution: the MIAA should hold a separate boys’ swimming championship in the fall for the next three years, and then, in 2015-16, drop the fall season and make swimming solely a winter sport.
Billerica 6, Wellesley 5 - With five minutes left and the Indians trailing, 5-4, following a timeout, Cam Slatton pulled a hidden ball trick. He acted as if he had the ball just outside the dirt. He took a few steps forward and wound up for a big shot, drawing the attention of the Raiders’ defense. Standing nearby, Peter Walters was hiding the ball low at his hip, and when Slatton began faking the shot, Walters tossed a pass over to Ben Melaugh, who was waiting all alone near the right side and scored easily to tie the game.
With just 60 seconds left, Slatton buried a shot off a feed from Melaugh for the eventual game-winner. The two seniors combined for four goals and three assists.
Bishop Feehan 9, Apponequet 3 - Matt Allen led the Shamrocks (2-0) with four goals.
Weymouth 8, Braintree 7 - Junior midfielder Mark Vitello scored four goals, including the overtime winner for the Wildcats.
Globe correspondent Jason Mastrodonato contributed from Wellesley.