High School Swimming

Newnan closes 2013 season with win

Newnan swimmers inched closer to state qualifying times on Friday while also continuing to rack up a ton of points in team competition at a tri-meet with Chapel Hill and Alexander at Boundary Waters Aquatic Center. 

Winning nine of Friday’s 22 events and adding 11 runner-up finishes, Newnan dominated with 382 points, 130 ahead of second-place Chapel Hill. The meet closed the 2013 portion of the high school schedule for the team, which will return to the pool for competition on Jan. 11 at the annual Clarke-Oconee Invitational.

Friday’s meet, which did not include traditional breaks and featured athletes swimming in back-to-back events, closed a busy final week of 2013 for Newnan.

Both the Cougars’ 200-yard freestyle relay and Lady Cougars senior backstroke standout Courtney Darrow continued to inch closer to achieving qualifying times for next year’s GHSA State Championship Meet.

Newnan’s boys swept all three relay events with victories led by a time of 1:40.03 in the 200 freestyle. A lineup of senior Drew Mask and juniors Harrison Pearson, Caleb Schenk and Hunter Spradlin came three-hundredths of a second away from qualifying for state.

Gage Griffith joined Mask, Pearson and Spradlin for a victory in the 200 medley relay in 1:59.55, while Griffith, senior Connor France, junior Michael Durant and Gray Gaude won the 400 freestyle relay in 4:20.

Darrow, meanwhile, continued to stay within less than a second of achieving a state time in the 100 backstroke, placing third in 1:06.34.

The Cougars also picked up six individual victories, one each for Schenk (50 freestyle; 25.59), Spradlin (200 freestyle; 2:08), Griffith (200 Individual Medley, 2:47.33), Mask (100 freestyle, 56.70), Durant (100 backstroke, 1:07.56) and France (100 breaststroke, 1:17.32).

Pearson (100 breaststroke), Schenk (500 freestyle), Durant (100 freestyle) and Mask (100 backstroke) also had second-place efforts in the meet with teammates winning 3 of the 4 events.

The Lady Cougars also finished in the top-3 in a dozen events led by seven second-place finishes.

Individually, Jacqueline Witt led the team with two second-place efforts in the 200 freestyle (2:37.88) and the 500 freestyle. Darrow was second in the 200 IM (2:39.60), while Kaylee Wagstaff (100 butterfly) and Sophie Bonomi (100 freestyle) also placed second in respective events.

Among relays, the Lady Cougars finished second in the 200 freestyle (Darrow, Sophie Bonomi, Shelby Stillwell, Witt) and the 400 freestyle (Stillwell, Wagstaff, Lindsay Stewart, Jessica Monroe).

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