Langley Boys and Yorktown Girls Repeat as Virginia Class 6 State Champs

2024 VHSL Class 6 State Championships

Courtesy: Dave Bell.

The VHSL State Championship Meet for Class 6 (largest schools) was held in Hampton, Virginia on February 16, 2024. Find full meet recaps below.

Boys’ Meet Recap

Team Scores 

  1. Langley – 216
  2. Robinson – 161
  3. Chantilly – 149
  4. Lake Braddock –146
  5. Patriot – 128

In the team race for the boys, Langley used a balanced attack to score in every swimming event, which earned the Saxons a comfortable victory over runner-up Robinson. In winning its second straight title, Langley was led by three swimmers who were double A-finalists: sophomore Michael Zhou, senior Charles Hu, and junior Hunter Zipperer. Langley also finished a close second place in both the 200 medley relay and 400 free relay to score big relay points.

The boys’ races were dominated by three club teammates who train at NCAP’s Burke site under coach Pete Morgan: JT Schmid (Robinson), Rian Graham (Herndon) and Josh Howat (Lake Braddock). These three boys were all double-event winners, and including relays, they won nine of the 11 swimming events at the meet.  See their joint video interview HERE.

Schmid, a senior and UNC commit, was the most dominant swimmer of the meet, as he was the only swimmer to set an individual state record and only swimmer to win all four of his events. His Class 6 record came in the 200 IM, which he won in 1:46.29 (nipping a 2015 record by NCAA champion John Shebat) – see race video HERE. Schmid also won the 100 back in 48.19 and led off Robinson’s 200 medley relay in 22.59, where he was joined by Nicholas Byrnes, Jack Fulham, and Liam Hickey for a winning swim of 1:32.38. In the 200 free relay, the same four boys from Robinson won a close battle with Lake Braddock – with Schmid anchoring in 19.75 to hold off Josh Howat, who split 19.60. Both Robinson (1:23.47) and Lake Braddock (1:23.95) swam Automatic All-American qualifying times in that race. See relay video HERE.

Graham, also a senior and a Louisville commit, used a dominant closing 50 to easily win the 200 free in 1:39.27, and he led the 100 fly wire to wire for a convincing 47.76 victory.

Howat, a junior and UVA commit, dominated the sprint free races – taking the 50 free in 20.19 and the 100 free in 44.38. In what may have been the race of the meet, Howat anchored Lake Braddock’s 400 free relay to victory after a tight battle with Langley.  Following teammates Charlie St. Louis (American U. commit), Ben Tuininga, and Josh Donovan, Howat split a blistering 43.44 for a come-from-behind victory and a Class 6 state record time of 3:04.79. Langley finished second in 3:05.15 as both teams cleared the Automatic All-American standard and finished under the 2022 State Record held by Patriot. See relay video HERE.

Other Boys’ Event Winners: 

  • Alexander Grocholksi, a sophomore at Colgan, won the 500 free in 4:27.99.
  • Eli Martin, a senior at Washington-Liberty and Va Tech-commit, won the 100 breast in 54.65. Martin also swam an excellent 1:48.55 200 IM to finish second in that event.
  • Nathaniel Grannis, a junior at Woodson, won 1m Diving with a score of 582.50.

Girls’ Meet Recap

Team Scores 

  1. Yorktown – 224
  2. Robinson – 173
  3. Battlefield – 168
  4. Fairfax – 137
  5. Justice – 135

In the girls’ meet, it was a “sister act” for Yorktown as the Sherman sisters led the Patriots to a repeat victory. Nora Sherman, a junior, provided steady scoring by swimming in four A-finals in the 200 IM, 100 back, 200 medley relay, and 400 free relay. But it was her little sister, Lila Sherman (just a freshman), who made the biggest splash by winning the 500 free in 4:54.33 and placing 3rd in the 200 free – as well as joining her sister on the second-place 400 free relay. Other top contributors for Yorktown included sophomore Sophie Fredericks (5th place in both 100 fly and 100 back) and senior Rachel Conley (4th in 100 free and 9th in 200 free).

In the girls’ events, Senior Emma Redman from Justice, a UVA commit, completed a sterling high school career with two impressive victories. She swam a significant PR of 1:58.68 in the 200 IM to win by over five seconds – see race video HERE. She later won the 100 breast in a PR 1:01.07 after a tight battle with Catherine Hughes of McLean. Redman also joined Justice teammates Claire Coughlin (Leehigh commit), Annika Wentland, and Reagan Kampschror to win the 200 free relay in 1:36.36 and finish second in the 200 medley relay.

The only other double-winner on the girls’ side was sophomore Alyssa Sagle from Battlefield, who won the 100 back in 53.17 and the 50 free in 23.43.

Other Girls’ Event Winners: 

  • Ally Vernon, a sophomore at Colgan, won the 100 free in 50.94.
  • Sadie Buckley, just a freshman at Fairfax, swam a 1:49.06 to win the 200 free by a fingernail over Vernon (1:49.08) and placed third in the 100 back in 54.03.
  • Carly Lahr, a senior at Chantilly and U. of Miami-commit won the 100 fly in 54.62.
  • Marleigh DaSilva, a sophomore at Madison, won 1m Diving with a score of 485.80.
  • McLean won the 200 medley relay with Danielle Hughes, Catherine Hughes (Wisconsin commit), Ana Falzone, and Eleanor Murphy (1:44.68).
  • Fairfax won the 400 free relay with Angelina Sagaow (Tufts commit), Sophie Scadron (NC State commit), Ava Rice, and Buckley (3:29.97).

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