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Swimming and Diving Teams Repeat as State Championships

The swimming and diving teams clinched both the boys and girls state championship titles Saturday afternoon for the second consecutive year.

The boys team finished with 572 points, far ahead of second-place Calhoun with 215 points. The girls team won with 445 points, ahead of runner-up Greater Atlanta Christian with 273 points.

The competition began Thursday with the Class A-3A diving finals. Grady Thomas '19 placed second and Alex York '20 finished in fifth in the boys 1-meter final. On the girls team, Emme Payne '21 finished in fourth, Tori Penn '20 in fifth, and Caroline Blankenbecler '22 in ninth, respectively.

At the swimming finals Saturday, the boys 200-yard medley relay team of Miles Clayton '22, Savaan Shah '22, Daniel Barra '20, and Cole Hinkes '20 finished in first with an All-American consideration time of 1:34.40. The girls team—Virgina Hatcher '21, Mary Claire Anderson '22, Amy Zhao '21, and Cecie Bassett '19—placed third (1:52.47).

In the 200-yard individual medley, Gigi Johnson '22 took first place with a time of 1:59.87, instantly achieving All-American honors after besting the standard time by nearly two seconds.

Grayson Harralson '19 took third in the 100-yard freestyle (46:48) for the boys and Samantha Bertschi '21 placed third in the 500-yard freestyle (5:07.62).

In the 200-yard freestyle relay, both the boys and girls team placed first and both were instantly recognized with All-American honors. Connor Hinkes '20, Donovan Mitchell '19, Cole Hinkes '20, and Grayson Harralson '19 recorded a time of 1:24.70 and Gigi Johnson '22, Samantha Bertschi '21, Annie Jardina '22, and Eliza Normark '19 finished in 1:34.89.

Gigi Johnson '22 won gold in the 100-yard breaststroke and earned All-American consideration with a time of 1:03.09.

To wrap up the meet, the boys and girls 400-yard freestyle relay teams both finished in first place. Grayson Harralson '19, Peter Bernot '20, Dylan Vroon '19, and Connor Hinkes '20 earned All-American consideration with a time of 3:07.95. The girls team—Gigi Johnson '22, Samantha Bertschi '21, Annie Jardina '22, and Eliza Normark '19—received automatic All-American honors with a time of 3:26.85.

The 2019 titles are the 26th and 23rd titles for the boys and girls programs, respectively. The teams are led by varsity swimming and diving coach Sharon Loughran and varsity diving coach Cynthia Potter.

The GHSA state swimming and diving championship was held at Georgia Tech’s McAuley Aquatic Center. Full results can be found online.

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