Southern’s Cabaron Breaks Backstroke Record, Wins First-Ever Conference Breaststroke Title
Southern Regional swimmer Gabrielle Cabaron didn’t have much time between the 100-yard backstroke and 100-yard breaststroke races during the Shore Conference Championships on Feb. 3, but she made them count.
After finishing 12th and breaking the school record with a time of 1:02.81 in the backstroke event, Cabaron returned to the pool inside the Ocean County YMCA in Toms River and became the first-ever conference champion in school history by winning the breaststroke in 1:07.82.
While cruising to a state-championship-meet qualifying time, the senior Ram tore through the first 50 yards in 31.69 seconds, barely holding a lead over Neptune freshman Kyleigh Harms, who entered the event as the No. 1 seed. Cabaron then dropped the hammer by zipping through the final 50 yards in 36.13 seconds, finishing about three-quarters of a second ahead of Freehold Township senior Molly Griswold, who entered the event as the No. 2 seed.
During the backstroke – not by any means Cabaron’s signature event, but permitted by coach Bill Entrikin to enter the event in an attempt to break the school mark – Southern’s career-points leader sped through the first two laps in 30.79 seconds, then finished up with a time of 32.02 second for the final 50.
Individually, Cabaron tallied 25 of the Rams’ 65 points, which was good enough for 12th in the team standings. The remaining 40 points were scored during relays.
Cabaron competed along with Jacquelyn Kilcommons, Abigael Coughlin and Laura Patterson during the opening 200-yard medley relay, and the foursome finished eighth with a time of 1:57.29, also a new school record. Patterson, Coughlin and Cabaron also joined Olivia Davis for the 400-yard freestyle relay and the crew placed ninth with a time of 3:52.53.
With her record-setting effort in the backstroke, Cabaron became Southern’s record-holder in every individual event and has been part of each relay that owns school records. Almost two weeks ago, she broke 2004 graduate Julie Tate’s career points mark.
— David Biggy