Prep Swimming: Northgate lineups sail to victory in County Championships
By DOUG GORMAN
For the second year in a row, the Northgate boys and girls swim teams captured the Coweta County championships.
The Vikings secured the win with a strong showing at the Summit YMCA’s Penniston-Powell Athletic Complex on Tuesday night.
East Coweta was second with 509 points (260 girls, 249 boys) while Newnan was a close third with 495. (235 girls, 260 boys).
The Vikings swept the boys and girls competition in a year where they are rebuilding after looking to replace 12 seniors.
Leading the way for the Vikings was Justin Moore, who captured the 200 IM (2:12.76) and the 100-yard backstroke (1:02.86).
Northgate’s victory earned head coach Becky Lowry a plunge into the pool.
“We weren’t sure how it was going to go,” she said. "Luckily, we had a really big turnout and tryouts, and the boys, especially have really put it in the water. We have some newer swimmers and some of them have really shown they have what it takes to go far.”
DeLaney Wallace rolled to a easy victory in the 50 free (59:36), winning the event by nearly three seconds.
Both Wallace and Moore now turn their attention to U.S Swimming Senior state this weekend.
“They have really added to our program,” Lowry said. “They can pretty much swim anything. Our younger swimmers really look up to them and their work ethic and they want to get better.”
Wallace added a second victory to her county meet resume Tuesday night with a win in the 100 breaststroke (1:13.35). It was one of the closest events of the night as she edged East Coweta’s Kelsey Taliaferro (1:13:50).
Taliaferro pulled out of the 100-yard backstroke in order to swim in the 100 breaststroke. Taliaferro turned in a state qualifying time in the 100-yard butterfly (1:03.89) with an easy victory.
(To view photos from this event, please visit http://photos.times-herald.com/mycapture and click on Sports / Swimming for the Photo Gallery.)
East Coweta’s Ashley Delgado won the girls 200-yard freestyle (2:06.62) in state qualifying time.
One of the most impressive swims of the night came from East Coweta’s Nick Hogsed (4:48.88) who cruised to a victory in the 500-yard freestyle. Hogsed touched the wall ahead of the rest of the field by more than one minute. His time in the longest event of the night easily qualified him for state.
The Indian swimmer came back later in the evening and cruised to a win in the 100 breaststroke (1:05.34). That time was also good enough to qualify for a state time.
Other swimmers to pick up victories included Northgate’s Russell Durrance (2:10.55) in the 200 freestyle. Stacie Evans took first place the 200-IM (2:36.41). Newnan’s Johny Jorgensen took home a first-place win in the 50 free (25:39.) Northgate’s Andrew Wheeler just missed a state qualifying time in the 100-yard butterfly (59:36).
“We all worked really hard to win this,” Wheeler said. “We really came together. It was a good night.”
The Vikings swept the 100 freestyle with Alex Dahlquest (55:96) winning the boys and Katie Whiddon capturing the girls event (1:01.15).
Newnan’s Courtney Darrow (1:13.90) captured the 100 backstroke by nearly 10 seconds.
Northgate helped itself in the team competition with a strong showing in the relays. The Vikings swept both the 200-yard medley boys and girls events to get the night started. Northgate’s Moore, Spencer Ramthun, Andrew Wheeler and Russell (1:50.19) earned a state qualifying time.
The Lady Vikings 200-yard medley relay team also touched the wall ahead of the rest of the pack as Kalie Whiddon, Wallace, Giulia Middei amd Hayley Holmes (2:02.27) also qualified for state.
Northgate also took victories in the 200-yard free style with Wheeler, Ramthun, Durrance, and Moore leading the way for the boys (1:38.58).
“I thought our relays did a really good job,” Lowry said. “
The Lady Vikings' Whiddon, Bria Malry, Hayley Holmes and Wallace finished with a winning time of (1:55.38) in the 200-yard freestyle.
East Coweta also took care of business in the 400-yard free relay, sweeping the event. The boys team of Hogsed, Luci Boulet, Jesse Murr and Hunter Kirbown (3:43.96). It was a state-qualifying time.
The Lady Indians relay team of Taliaferro, Katie Sears, Stacie Evans and Delgado won the event by more than 25 seconds (4:09.77).