By Janee Law
Northport High School graduate Hailey Modelewski took first place in all five of the events she competed in on Feb. 20 during the State University of New York Athletic Conference swimming and diving championship.
“It was definitely amazing,” said Modelewski, who’s a senior at SUNY Geneseo where she is studying special education. “I really never thought starting off swimming that it was something I could do, but I guess each year I kind of got closer to it.”
Modelewski competed in both the 100- and 200-yard individual butterfly races; the 200-yard individual medley; the 200-yard fly legs medley relay; and 400-yard medley relay. The meet was held at Erie Community College in Buffalo.
In the 400-yard medley relay Modelewski her portion of the race in 3:55.92. In the 200-yard fly legs medley relay she finished her leg in 1:46.10, a SUNYAC-record time.
For the 200-yard individual medley, Modelewski swam to a time of 2:09.42; in the 200-yard butterfly she came in at 2:09.01; and in the 100-yard butterfly, her favorite event to compete in, she finished in 57.22 seconds.
“It’s always a good, fast race with people that you know and you’ve been with through four years and it’s a fun race to compete in,” Modelewski said of the 100-yard butterfly race.
Modelewski was also named the women’s “swimmer of the meet” and Geneseo’s athlete of the week. Geneseo’s women’s swim team was also named All-SUNYAC.
“Especially with it being my senior, it was so special and great to have made it that far and be at the highest that I could’ve been,” Modelewski said.
Starting at 5 years old, Modelewski swam for the Northport Yacht Club, the Huntington YMCA Bluefish and Northport High School. She said she swam during the summers for the Northport Yacht Club and then started swimming year round when she was 13 years old.
“I guess it was a really big step for me just because I was at a more mature age and ready to commit to something that I really loved doing so it was kind of just another step for me,” Modelewski said.
Although Modelewski played field hockey and lacrosse for Northport through her first three years of high school, she continued to swim with the Huntington YMCA Bluefish. However, when she decided to commit herself to swimming for college, Modelewski joined the high school’s swim team during her senior year.
“That was the sport that I loved the most and something that I was really committed to over those other two,” Modelewski said. “I’ve just had the best experiences with it, for so many different reasons, so it just seemed right to be doing that.”