Charlotte Crush and SHA Girls Set 2 Records En Route to 12th-Straight Kentucky State Title

by Laura Rosado 0

February 25th, 2024 High School, Previews & Recaps

Kentucky High School State Swimming & Diving Championships – Girls

  • February 24, 2024
  • Lancaster Aquatics Center
    • University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
  • Short Course Yards (25 yards), Prelims/Finals
  • Results on Meet Mobile: “2024 KHSAA Championships”

After her older brother Johnny Crush broke four state records in the boys’ meet, NAG record-holder and Sacred Heart Academy sophomore Charlotte Crush was in action for the girls’ meet, leading her team to their 12th-straight state title, and 35th overall since joining the KHSAA in 1962.

Team Standings – Top 10

  1. Sacred Heart Academy – 438
  2. Elizabethtown High School – 169
  3. Ryle High School – 140.5
  4. Notre Dame Academy – 134.5
  5. Assumption High School – 120
  6. Lexington Catholic High School – 115
  7. Christian Academy-Louisville – 114
  8. West Jessamine High School – 109.5
  9. Highlands High School – 103.5
  10. Madison Central High School – 98

Crush was already the Kentucky high school record-holder in the 100 fly (51.55) and 100 back (51.14) going into this meet from her performances last year, and since then has been as fast as 50.46 in the 100 fly and 49.53 in the 100 back, which is a 15-16 NAG record. At the KHSAA Region 5 Championship, she swam under both of her state records, clocking 51.52 in the 100 fly and 50.91 in the 100 back, but did not officially break her records as Kentucky only counts times swam at the state championship meet.

In prelims, Crush lowered her record in the 100 fly to a 51.33, easily qualifying 1st by over four seconds. She added a bit of time in finals, swimming 51.41, but still took home her second straight title in the event. She was followed by Elizabethtown High School senior Sydney Braeger (53.97), who placed 7th in this event last year.

Crush didn’t quite match her earlier performances in the 100 back, clocking 51.59 in finals to miss her state record, but she still won handedly. Kate Braeger (Elizabethtown), last year’s runner-up, repeated her finish here with a 54.41, shaving one-hundredth of a second off her personal best.

The Sacred Heart girls broke their state record in the 200 medley relay, set in 2020 with a team that featured Annabel Crush, Charlotte Crush’s older sister. The quartet of Crush (24.31), Georgia Kohler (28.68), Ava Grazziani (24.77), and Haley McDonald (22.48) combined for a time of 1:40.24, knocking 18-hundredths of a second off the record. Sacred Heart has won a majority of titles in this event since 2012, but had their streak snapped by Lafayette in 2022.

Another streak was snapped in the 400 free relay. The Sacred Heart girls had been dominant since 2014, but a disqualification in the morning prelims kept them from defending their title. In their absence, the field was open for the Elizabethtown squad of Micaela Godfrey (52.98), Stella Fox (55.89), Kate Braeger (51.34), and Sydney Braeger (50.85) to claim their school’s first title in the event since 1992 (3:35.60).

Hayley McDonald was also a double event winner alongside Crush. She defended her title in the 200 IM, clocking 1:59.37, and won the 100 free (50.12).

Other Event Winners:

  • Sacred Heart sophomore Ava Grazziani claimed her first state title in the 200 free, swimming a best time of 1:48.68 after placing 4th in the event as a freshman.
  • Ballard senior and University of Cincinnati commit Kate Mardis claimed her first state championship in the 50 free with a huge personal best (23.08). It was Ballard’s first state champion in the event since 1976, and their first individual champion in any event since 1993.
  • Sadie Hartig, a junior from Notre Dame, claimed her first individual title in the 500 free (4:56.46) after a runner-up finish last year.
  • Senior Sydney Perkins of Christian Academy-Louisville, who will swim at UConn starting in the fall, won the 100 breast with a personal best (1:02.16). Her time would have led the Huskies’ roster for the last two years.
  • Cooper senior at New Mexico State commit Peytton Moore won the 1-meter dive event with a score of 537.70. This is her third career state title in the event.

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