For Aidan McCaughey, love of swimming is what drives him. He’ll go out and swim as much as he can, and on Friday, three events turned into two victories.
The Division junior won the 100-yard freestyle in 51.25 and the 100 backstroke in 1:01.55 to help undefeated Levittown-East Meadow District to a 100-84 win over Bellmore-Merrick in Nassau II at the Nassau County Aquatic Center.
“It’s a little difficult, but that’s what we train for, honestly,” McCaughey said. “I swim every day.”
McCaughey, who also competed in the 400-free relay, has been swimming for about 12 years and has become an integral piece of Levittown-East Meadow District’s run.
“I want to keep getting better,” McCaughey said. “I use these meets to get my times down and get better in counties.”
His team has been on that same path, with a 7-0 record going into its last regular-season meet next week. It’s a group filled with young talent, but bolstered by juniors like McCaughey and senior leaders, including Clarke’s Sean Chun, who took third in the 200 free in 1:59.22 and was part of the second-place 400-free relay, and MacArthur’s Jeffrey Ng.
“There’s a little pressure,” said Ng, another member of the relay. “You can come in first at your event and come to counties and come in last. You keep that in your mind. You’re proud of the moment, but you remember to push to be better than yourself the next time.”
Min Chun took the 500 free in 5:02.40 in a close finish with Bellmore-Merrick’s Patrick Boyle (5:03.57). Chun’s brother, Sean, said he knows Boyle from club swimming and being aware of his talent made Chun’s win more impressive.
“I was actually surprised he pulled it off at the end,” Sean Chun said.
Bellmore-Merrick’s Youssef Ibrahim won the diving competition with a 244 score, and teammate Regan O’Driscoll had a 190 for second.
Ibrahim, a ninth-grader, is the defending Nassau champion and said he’s looking for progression more than wins at each meet.
“It’s just trying to get that certain score,” Ibrahim said. “My brother’s record.”
His brother, Moustafa Ibrahim, holds the six-dive team record at 309. He also has the Nassau record, set in 2015 for 11 dives at 567.35.
“I’m trying to go 300 by the end of the season,” Ibrahim said. “I still have a couple seasons to go. That’s my goal by senior year.”