Chester Rec. Dolphins bring home CAL championship, again

For the 15th consecutive year, the Chester Recreation Association (CRA) Dolphins are Division A champions of the Chesterfield Aquatic League (CAL).  

Over 1,000 Chesterfield residents poured into the Beulah Swim and Tennis Club Friday and Saturday, as 21 teams competed for this year’s CAL championship. There, teams stayed cool from the record heat by taking refuge in large event tents provided by the league.

“It’s a great summer league and it’s unique in that the four-year-olds are on the same team with those who are 18,” said first-year CAL president Tim Faherty. “The young swimmers look up to the older ones, who are sort of their mentors. It’s truly a great family environment – both parents and kids interacting. There’s just nothing like this dynamic.”

The competition followed the summer’s regular dual-meet season – which CRA also won – and had the 1,100 registered swimmers compete for four Division championships (A, B, C, D) in freestyle, breaststroke, the individual medley, butterfly, backstroke, the freestyle relay and the medley relay. Competition in each division was determined by each team’s finish the previous year, depending on their accumulated points, with the A Division being the most competitive.

The CRA Dolphins finished the weekend with a total of 1,037 points, the highest accumulated by any team in the CAL competition.

In the 9-10 medley relay, CRA broke a league record by two seconds, previously held by Salisbury, according to CRA coach Barbara Miller.  The team’s Audrey Crouch, 10, – one of the young ladies who helped to break the record – received five gold medals in the Gold Division.

“It’s been a fantastic weekend. The kids swam unbelievably; and on the relays they really out-swam themselves,” said Miller, who has coached the CRA team for a number of years. “They really came through and encouraged each other and did things that weren’t even predicted.”

Woodland Pond won the championship in the B Division; Foxcroft the C Division; and the Meadowbrook team won the D Division. Aside from the competition, Meadowbrook’s Breagan Wallin was also awarded a $1,000 scholarship by the CAL.

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