April 02, 2020

Gasaway showing speed, versatility

Old Town’s Zach Gasaway is known as a breastroke swimmer. As of Jan. 18, his name is on a slew of this season’s state-best times in Class B, and most of them don’t have anything to do with the breaststroke.

Gasaway’s state-bests included a 2:02.22 in the 200 individual medley, a four-second edge in the 100 butterfly with a time of 55.39 and a 1:02.62 finish in the 100 breastroke.

Gasaway is second in the 100 backstroke, fifth in the 200 freestyle, third in the 100 free and third in the 50 free. He anchors the Indians’ state-best 200 free relay and swims the breastroke leg of the second-best 200 medley relay.

“A lot of people graduated, so that puts in me in line to swim events that I didn’t swim last year,” Gasaway said. “My times have improved a little, but I couldn’t have expected this.”

During Old Town’s win against John Bapst Saturday, he swam a 5:14.07 in the 500 free, which would put him among the leaders in the distance event and qualifies him for the state championships. Gasaway has now qualified in every swimming event.

“I expected that he’d be down near some of the times he had last year,” Old Town coach Matt Byther said. “I didn’t expect them to be there so soon.”

At the 1997 state meet, Gasaway won the 100 breast and 200 individual medley and the Maine Swimming League named him as one of the top breastrokers and IMers in the state.

Now, Gasaway and Byther have to decide which events Gasaway will swim at the state meet. The senior is set on the IM and breastroke, but also wants to try the butterfly and the 200 free relay. He is close to setting Old Town records in both events.

“I’d like to get the record in the relay, to have all four names up there,” he said. “I like the team thing better.”

Gasaway, who will swim for the University of Maine next year, is also a team captain, and Byther has seen Gasaway’s leadership skills shine this season as well.

“At the beginning of the season he took a group of new swimmers into a lane and showed them some turns,” Byther said. “It’s good to see him step up and show the new kids the ropes.”

All season, John Bapst freshman girls basketball coach Carl Goggins has been telling his team that they should be using their on-court leadership skills off the court.

Now, with the freshman season about to wrap up, Goggins and his team are doing something – they have collected about 40 cans of food and will spend one afternoon handing out the cans at the Greater Bangor Area Shelter.

“John Bapst has a tradition of getting students involved in the community,” he said. “But I did some research at the school and for whatever reason, the athletic teams haven’t been involved.”

“I asked the girls how they felt about it and they thought it was a good idea,” Goggins added. “Then, I realized it was a great idea because it was the right idea.”

Goggins and the team was supposed to help out at the shelter last week, but snowed-out practices precluded the visit. Instead, Goggins said, the team will go sometime between their last game and the week before the Class B tournament.

“They are really excited about doing something for the less fortunate,” Goggins said. “It should be really rewarding.”

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