Published Sunday, February 10, 2013
From STAFF REPORTS
ATLANTA — Hard work and persistance paid off for East Coweta junior Nick Hogsed and Northgate sophomore Justin Moore during the final day of the GHSA Swimming Championships at Georgia Tech.
In return trips to the state finals, Hogsed and Moore each scored 25 points over a pair of individual swims in respective Class AAAAAA and AAAAA-A meets, putting both the Indians and Vikings on the scoreboard to go along with a five-point effort from Northgate's girls.
Delaney Wallace's 12th place finish for the Lady Vikings in the girls 100-yard breaststroke on Saturday gave Northgate a combined 29 points for its highest finish in recent memory.
Moore led the way locally with a third-place finish in the Class AAAAA 100 backstroke.
Hogsed, who heads to USA Swimming's national meet next month as member of Swim Atlanta's club program, also gave his high school program points at the state level after a string of near misses at reaching state finals.
The Indians, who have been led by a growing list of former standouts including Jamie Wright, Jake O'Brien, Trevor Bachman and Michael Dean, had also seen Hogsed barely miss out on a trip to the 500-yard freestyle finals as a sophomore in 2012.
This time, around, however, he improved his time from the previous year by 11 seconds to finish sixth overall in Class AAAAAA at 4:36.13. While it wasn't quite as fast as his qualifying mark of 4:33.6 from Friday — which met AA-A standards in USA Swimming – it also came while capping 1,400-yards in the pool over a two-day span.
Along with competing in 500 — the GHSA's longest individual swim event — Hogsed added a seventh-place effort in the 200 freestyle to open Saturday's finals in 1:44.05, also slightly slower than in preliminaries. He opened the meet with a mark of 1:42.99 that was nearly four seconds faster than his personal best this season.
Hogsed became the first swimmer in the state to qualify in all eight individual events while also joining East Coweta's boys for two state marks in relays. He will swim eight events next month at nationals in addition to the 800 relay.
Moore, meanwhile, has now scored at the state level in each of his first two varsity seasons for Northgate after putting together 21 1/2 as a freshman in 2012.
The Viking sophomore capped off his efforts in his signature 100 backstroke, moving up from fourth in preliminaries for a second personal-best mark in as many days. After trimming two seconds off his state qualifying time of 52.22 on Friday, Moore rocketed to the finish in 51.02 behind only Dalton teammates Taylor Dale and Ethan Young — both of whom had times just over 49 seconds.
Earlier on Saturday, Moore finished the 50 freestyle ninth overall in 21.66, despite posting the sixth-fastest time in AAAAA-A. His preliminary mark of 21.88 placed him in the "B" final and just out of the top-8 finalists on Friday.
Wallace added a scorer for the Lady Vikings in her own return trip to the state meet after qualifying as a ninth grader. The Northgate sophomore set a personal best of 1:09.39 in qualifying and nearly matched it in Saturday's "B" final by placing 12th in 1:09.81.
All three swimmers will be returning for another run for the 2013-14 season following a solid year for county lineups.
Last weekend's meet, however, marked the final varsity swims for several senior standouts including Lady Indians Kelsey Taliaferro and Ashley Delgado. Taliaferro placed 20th in the 200 individual medley and Delgado was 21st in the 50 freestyle to lead respective efforts individually.