From the sports editor: For CR swimming, three Mays better than one

This is the one season that (left to right) sisters Alex, Tori and Georgia May are all swimming for Caesar Rodney. Caesar Rodney photo

DOVER — Before the season started, coach Bill Wells asked the May sisters what they wanted to put on their swimming gear.

The Caesar Rodney High coach figured they’d probably get their first initials, along with their last name, on their swim caps, for instance.

No, they answered, just ‘May’ is fine.

The result, said Wells, is that sometimes the Riders seem to have more Mays competing than they actually do.

“We get a lot of comments, a lot of ‘side-eyes’ from coaches about all the Mays we have in the pool at one time,” Wells said with a smile. “I’ve got all of them in each of the relays, then I’ve got them in two individuals (apiece). So, in my ‘A’ lane, I’ve got a May in every event besides two.”

For the record, there are only three Mays swimming for CR this winter: Alex is a senior, Georgia is a sophomore and Tori is a freshman.

Alex May (Delaware State News file photo)

But you can’t blame opposing teams for feeling like there’s more than three Mays.

In the Riders’ 130-40 win over Archmere on Thursday, CR won all 11 events — with one or more Mays involved in nine of the victories. All three of them swim the 400 free relay together, along with another standout, Danielle Stewart.

With Alex a senior and Tori a freshman, this is the first and only season all three will compete together on the same team.

The Dover family — the girls’ parents are Sherry and Mitch — has been looking forward to this season for a while.

“Ever since my freshman year, my dad’s been talking about it,” said Alex. “ ‘Four years from now. …’ I’ve been working all four of my years just to get to this point with my siblings.”

“When Tori was in middle school, Alex would always bring up the idea — ‘Next year’s our year,’” said Georgia. “Now that it’s happening, it’s magic.”

Georgia May (Delaware State News file photo)

Wells said he couldn’t ask for a better situation.

Not only are the Mays talented swimmers, but they’re also pretty competitive. So they just naturally push each other to get better — like they’ve been doing since they were little at Kent Swim Club or the Central Delaware YMCA.

“It’s just cool to have three sisters that all swim competitively,” said Wells. “They want to beat each other and they won’t shy away from telling you that. They’ve been awesome since day one for us.

“They’ve put in the work. They’ll get here at 5:30 in the morning and they’ll double practice three days a week. Their work ethic is not in question ever.”

“They’re my most tough competitors so I love competing against them,” Tori said about her older sisters. “When I was little, I loved beating them.”

“We beat each other but it pushes me to practice harder,” said Alex. “It’s a little upsetting at first. They’re my biggest competitors but they’re also my biggest cheerleaders.”

Alex May (Delaware State News file photo)

Alex said one of her favorite things this year is being able to go home and strategize with her sisters for their next meet. They’ll look over the opposition’s times and figure out where they fit best in the lineup.

The fact is, said Wells, that while the three sisters have their own strengths and weaknesses, he really can use them in several different combinations.

“They kind of rotate through all the events,” said Wells. “It’s kind of what they’re feeling that day. I let them have some say.”
The results speak for themselves.

The Riders are currently 7-0 in the Henlopen Conference, 9-1 overall. Their only loss was to state power Wilmington Charter.

Like the rest of the downstate swimming world, the Mays want to be at their best for the Henlopen Conference championship meet, which is slated for Feb. 9 at Sussex Academy.

The Mays’ dream is to win the 400 free relay with all three of them swimming a leg of the race.

“It’s super fun to be able to swim with them and not be competing against them,” Tori said about the relay. “We’re getting there. Every meet we’ve had a little bit of improvement.

Of course, Georgia and Tori still have two more seasons together after this. And then, when Tori’s a senior, the fourth May sibling — brother Brady — will be a freshman for the Riders.

“It’ll be fun having at least one sibling on the team every year,” said Tori.

On the other hand, all good things come to an end.

In the fall, Alex will head to Washington College, where she’ll continue her swimming career. She’s glad the three of them got this one season to compete together — even if she’s the one who always has to drive them to practice.

“It’s a lot more fun to drive this year,” said Alex. “I’m never alone — it’s good and bad. (But) it’s a joy to have them on the team with me. And it’s been a great senior year with them.”

Harmon back in Super Bowl

Caesar Rodney High grad Duron Harmon has made it to his fourth Super Bowl out of his six seasons with the New England Patriots.

But that doesn’t mean the veteran safety has run out of motivation. Last year’s Super Bowl, in which the Patriots lost to the Eagles, 41-33, was especially tough to swallow.

Harmon called that setback one of the toughest things he’s had to deal with in sports.

“Being that close to being a champion and then basically having it ripped away from you, it was a bad feeling,” he said in an interview on Boston radio station WEEL this week.

Harmon has a team-best four interceptions this season, matching his total from last year and giving him 15 for his career.

Odds & ends

• After making the second round of the Australian Open this year, Dover’s Madison Brengle is now 6-7 in the prestigious event in her career. She owns a 13-22 record in Grand Slam tennis tournaments overall.

• The opening of the 2,300-seat 76ers Fieldhouse in Wilmington this week gives the state another large basketball arena in which to hold big games like the DIAA state tournament. The arena is home to the 76ers’ affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats.

• The Post 1 baseball squad, which won the American League World Series title, has been named the state’s Team of the Year by the Delaware Sportswriters & Broadcasters Association.

Post 1 will be officially honored at the DSBA’s 70th annual banquet on Feb. 18, at the Sheraton Wilmington South Hotel, 365 Airport Road, New Castle. Tickets are available at $35 at http://www.delasports.org/.

Reach sports editor Andy Walter at walter@newszap.com

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