Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 4
 
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
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HONORE ROLL: Princeton High boys swimming star Victor Honore shows his focus as he gets ready for a backstroke race earlier this season. Last Thursday, Honore won the 100-meter back and 100 butterfly to help PHS to a 90-80 win at WW/P-N. The Little Tigers, now 10-0, will end the regular season with a showdown against fellow unbeaten, Notre Dame, on January 28 at Rider University.

With Honore Displaying Tunnel Vision, PHS Boys’ Swimmers Remain Unbeaten

Bill Alden

Even though the Princeton High boys’ swimming team was locked in a tight battle at WW/P-N last Thursday, Victor Honore wasn’t checking out the scoreboard.

“I didn’t know the score; I was not paying attention,” said PHS sophomore Honore.

Instead, Honore was practicing the tunnel vision that has helped him become a star.

“I don’t really think about the race,” said Honore. “I don’t look around. I think about myself in the water. I am in my zone.

Honore’s focus yielded four key wins for the Little Tigers as he won the 100-meter butterfly and 100 backstroke and helped PHS to victories in the 200 medley and 400 free relay races.

Sparked by Honore’s contribution, PHS pulled out a 90-80 victory as it improved to 10-0 on the season.

Honore is just one of several sophomores who have been a key component in PHS’s sizzling start.

In addition to Honore, the list of the squad’s sophomore stars includes Matt Kuhlik, Harun Filipovic, Addison Hebert, Jacques Bazile, and Derek Colaizzo.

In the victory over WW/P-N, Kuhlik won the 50 and 100 free while Hebert placed first in the 200 free and 100 breaststroke and Colaizzo placed second in the 50 free and third in the 100 fly.

In Honore’s view, the sophomore class has developed a tight bond. “We have a good group,” said Honore of the team’s corps of sophomores.

“Matt Kuhlik is a good freestyle swimmer. Addison is not really a breaststroke swimmer but he is the best on our team so that really helps us. Derek got a lot faster.”

PHS head coach Greg Hand was happy with the fast swims that he got from Honore.

“Victor had real solid races today,” said Hand. “It’s not that they were particularly close but he gave us really good times. He had a great attitude today as always. He’s always committed in those relay swims.”

Hand is seeing good commitment across the board from his boys’ squad. “It was a real solid effort; there was high enthusiasm,” asserted Hand, who got a big effort from junior co-captain Peter Deardorff, the winner of the 200 individual medley and 400 free.

“I think recently we have had to show that we can compete when it is close. I think this one helped.”

In addition to Honore, Hand got good competitive fire from Hebert, Colaizzo, and Deardorff.

“We asked Addie to swim the 200 free today and Peter to swim the IM,” said Hand.

“We felt we might need Pete in the IM to beat their guy and he swam real well for us. Derek is doing a marvelous job.”

The Little Tigers have been getting marvelous work throughout the lineup.

“What I also like about the team now is that even though we get some events where we are fifth and sixth, we are still getting some really committed swims from these guys,” added Hand.

“They are totally bought in; they are working hard in practice and maybe it helps us on the scoreboard this year or maybe next year. The important thing is that everybody sees it as a team effort and we are not leaving it to the five or six fastest guys.”

PHS will need to utilize all its speed as it faces fellow unbeaten Notre Dame on January 28 at Rider University in its regular season finale.

“The challenge of Notre Dame is pretty clear,” said Hand, whose team starts post-season action by competing in the Mercer County Championships from February 4-6.

“We can’t assume anything about what is going to happen in the pool. Clearly they are a deeper team than we are and they have as much front end speed as we do. In a sense, it is not bad to have a tune-up like Notre Dame before counties and states. To have our best swims in our last dual meet would be a terrific thing.”

Honore, for his part, believes PHS can build on its win over WW/P-N as it faces the challenge of Notre Dame.

“Today was definitely a confidence builder,” said Honore. “Notre Dame is going to be really tough; I know they have some good swimmers. It really helps that we know we can win.”

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