George Washington High School repeated as West Virginia state champions over the weekend, picking up their fourth-straight boys title and second consecutive girls championship.
George Washington swam away with things handily on the boys’ side, topping Notre Dame High School by nearly 100. The girls’ meet was much more intense, with George Washington outlasting Morgantown by just 19.5 amidst multiple state records.
George Washington opened things up by running down Notre Dame over the final 50 yards to win the 200 medley relay. Anchor Josh Barnette split a 22.08, the best of the field, to bring George Washington back from third. He was joined by David Nason, Nick Peyatte and Zach Kidd on the relay, which went 1:40.99 to rattle the state record of 1:40.65.
Notre Dame was second in 1:41.35, getting an event-best 24.12 from butterflyer Andrew Boyles.
Parkersburg senior Sean Snider took home the first individual title, winning the 200 free in 1:44.42. He rocketed away from the field over the back half, keeping his splits very consistent on the way to a 2-second win. His chief competition was George Washington’s Kidd, who went 1:46.24 for second just one event removed from his medley relay leg.
Notre Dame’s Jake Preaskorn easily topped the 200 IM. The junior went 1:53.36 to win by 7 seconds before Parkersburg sophomore Preston Padden took the 50 free in 21.38.
Second in that event was Adam Poe, a junior out of South Charleston, and he came back in the very first event after the diving break to win the 100 fly in 52.91, just touching out George Washington’s Nason by a tenth.
Fairmont Senior’s Taylor Campbell won the 100 free in another touchout, going 48.30 to Notre Dame junior Andrew Boyles’ 48.35. The 500 free was less close, with Kidd of George Washington goign 4:47.31 to easily top Parkersburg’s Snider, a reversal of their finish in the 200.
Hurricane powered away with the 200 free relay title, taking a big lead on the field early with senior Zach Shurow‘s 22.50 leadoff leg. Austin Harper, Quin Shurow and Luke Earls rounded out the 1:31.43 relay, that beat Parkersburg by nearly a second.
Junior Nathan Runyon of Charleston Catholic won the 100 back, topping 200 IM winner Preaskorn 52.22 to 53.41. From there, Hurricane’s Zach Shurow came off the 200 free relay championship to win the 100 breast in 59.22.
George Washington went 3:19.41 to easily win the final relay and pad their team championship. David Nason, Matt Nelson, Zach Kidd and Josh Barnette topped the 400 free relay field on strong back half, with Barnette splitting 48.51 on the end. Notre Dame took second with the field’s fastest split, anchor Jake Preaskorn in 47.58. Parkersburg took third with Sean Snider going 47.60 on the fourth leg.
Top 5 Boys Teams
1. George Washington 231.5
2. Notre Dame 136
3. Parkersburg 127
4. Hurricane 125
5. Parkersburg South 124.5
George Washington’s girls started the meet the same way as their boys, winning the 200 medley relay and just missing a state record. Jordyn O’Dell, Emily Hageboeck, Katie Hageboeck and Haley Hemsworth went 1:52.72 for the runaway win, just .14 off the school’s state record from a year ago. Emily Hageboeck and Hemsworth were the biggest splits on the relay, putting up a 30.8 breaststroke and a 25.5 freestyle, respectively.
Morgantown freshman Courtney Deem won the 200 free with ease, going 1:55.96 – that was pretty clearly a cruise for Deem, who took finals to focus on relays, as she broke the state record in the event at prelims with a 1:53.44.
Charleston Catholic took another state record with junior Morgan Carr‘s 200 IM. She actually got under the old state mark twice, going 2:04.95 in prelims and 2:05.27 in finals. In what was the fastest IM event in state history, second-place Emily Hageboeck was also under the old standard at 2:08.86 in finals.
The first record to be broken during finals was in the 50 free. In that event, Elkins junior Samantha Hall went 24.01 to just slip under the 11-year-old state record of 24.04. And after the diving break, Carr returned to win her second title, going 56.75 in the 100 fly – she already owned the state mark coming into the meet and bettered it twice, with her prelims time of 56.47 standing as the final record.
The 100 free was the race of the meet. In a classic showdown, 200 free champ Deem clashed with 50 free winner Hall, but in a twist, neither won the race. Instead, it was junior Maggie Miller of Buckhannon Upshur who got to the wall first, going 52.22 for the win. Deem was second in 52.36, and Hall went 52.66 for third. All three girls got under the old state record in the event – that mark was 52.70 set by Jennie Spencer back in 2004.
Hurricane’s Madisyn Lyons won the 500 free, going 5:12.60 before Deem was back in the water leading her Morgantown 200 free relay to the state title. Deem split 23.92 on the anchor leg to run down Parkersburg and take home the win in 1:43.35. Joining Deems on that state-championship relay were Jenna Pierce, Bekah Shephard and Lakin Davis.
Buckhannon’s Miller took down her second state record by going 55.01 in the 100 back. That absolutely blew away the previous record, 56.64 set by her older sister Courtney, now a West Virginia Mountaineer.
George Washington picked up its first and only individual win of the meet just when they needed it most, in the second-to-last event with the team scores still tight. Sophomore Emily Hageboeck went 1:06.44 to not only win the 100 breast, but break the 12-year-old state record of 1:06.70. With her teammate Haley Hemsworth also in the A final, the event pretty well sealed what was a tight team points battle for the team trophy.
Morgantown did all it could in the final relay, going 3:43.75 to touch out George Washington by .05, but it wasn’t enough to make up the points as George Washington took home its second-straight state title. Morgantown’s Jenna Pierce, Emily Ledermann, Bekah Shepard and Courtney Deem were honored as 400 free relay state champs, though, and were just a second and a half off the state record with a huge 51.89 split from Deem on the end.
Top 5 Girls Teams
1. George Washington 209
2. Morgantown 189.5
3. Parkersburg 147
4. Hurricane 100
5. Buckhannon Upshur 95