The Montclair High School boys swimming team’s last season ended a bit prematurely for them in the state tournament.

The host Mounties dropped a tough 89-81 decision to Hackensack in the North 1 Group A state quarterfinals last February.

This season, the Montclair boys are not only trying to make deeper inroads in the state tournament next month, but to grab one of the top spots in the upcoming Essex County Tournament.

"The boys can finish in the top three at counties if they continue to swim fast and score points," said Montclair head coach Ed Koenigsfest.

Montclair sophomore Lucas Foung competes in the 100 backstroke against Newark Academy. Foung came in second in the event with a time of 57.45; the Mounties nipped the Minutemen, 87-83, on Jan. 4 on the road. (EDWARD KENSIK/STAFF)
Montclair sophomore Lucas Foung competes in the 100 backstroke against Newark Academy. Foung came in second in the event with a time of 57.45; the Mounties nipped the Minutemen, 87-83, on Jan. 4 on the road. (EDWARD KENSIK/STAFF)
loading...

As of last week, the Mounties boys squad was 4-1 in dual meets, with the lone loss coming to Essex powerhouse Seton Hall Prep, 128-42. The Pirates are expected to be favorites heading into the Essex County Tournament on Monday, Jan. 16, at New Jersey Institute of Technology.

With their good start the team will have a very good shot of making the state tournament come February. 

Koenigsfest knows what his team will need to do to go further in the state tournament this year. "We need to score as many possible points as we can in each race," the coach said.

Last season, Montclair finished third in the county tournament with 155 points, behind winner Seton Hall Prep (341) and Newark Academy (226). Based on early records this year, the Mounties will be battling the likes of Newark Academy, Livingston and Millburn for runner-up to Seton Hall Prep in this year's tournament.

Montclair junior Eli Muldoon competes in the 100 meter butterfly race against Newark Academy. Muldoon and the Mounties nipped the Minutemen, 87-83, on Jan. 4 on the road. Muldoon finished second in the race with a time of :56.39. Montclair boys swimming will be targeting a top three finish in the team standings for the Essex County Tournament that is Jan. 16 at New Jersey Institute of Technology. (EDWARD KENSIK/STAFF)
Montclair junior Eli Muldoon competes in the 100 meter butterfly race against Newark Academy. Muldoon and the Mounties nipped the Minutemen, 87-83, on Jan. 4 on the road. Muldoon finished second in the race with a time of :56.39. Montclair boys swimming will be targeting a top three finish in the team standings for the Essex County Tournament that is Jan. 16 at New Jersey Institute of Technology. (EDWARD KENSIK/STAFF)
loading...

The boys team recently defeated one of the squads that they will have to beat out in the county tournament, an 87-83 victory at Newark Academy on Jan. 4.

It came down to the last race, where Montclair finished second and third in the 400-freestyle relay. The foursome of senior Logan Dreiver, senior Kal Soiber, junior Eli Muldoon and sophomore Troy Dibble finished second with a time of 3:32.74, which was just .19 behind the Newark Academy top foursome that took first. The other top Mounties foursome, Eric Pittman, freshman Max Pearson, freshman Ari Glassman and sophomore Lucas Foung, came in third with a time of 3:38.33.

Against the Minutemen Montclair had three race winners, as they dominated the freestyle races. Dreiver grabbed firsts in both the 200 freestyle (1.54.18) and 500 freestyle (5:19.33), while Soiber took the 100 freestyle (52.90).

But it was the depth that Montclair had over Newark Academy that was the difference.  When the Mounties did not finish first in a race, they would grab both second and third place.

In the first five dual meets, two Montclair swimmers have the most first-place finishes, with Dibble and Foung bringing home five firsts each. Dibble has been a master in the freestyle, with three firsts in the 100 along with a first in the 50 and 200 free. Foung has excelled in the 100 backstroke, with three first-place finishes. 

In terms of the relays, the team has excelled in the 200 freestyle and the 400 freestyle, with three victories each in the dual meets.

 

Montclair Boys Swimming Schedule
(Home meets at Montclair State University)

Jan. 16 Essex County Tournament, NJIT, 9 a.m.
Jan. 19 at Montclair Kimberley, Montclair State University, 4:30 p.m.
Jan. 25 at Millburn, 2:45 p.m.
Jan. 27 Caldwell, 5:45 p.m.
Feb. 6 NJSIAA state tournament, TBD