Wheeling Park Girls Win First WV State Title, Washington Boys Reclaim Crown

The girls of Wheeling Park won their first-ever West Virginia high school state title Saturday, while the George Washington boys jumped back to the top of the ranks for the first time since their 5-year state win streak was snapped last winter.

Girls Meet


Wheeling Park won a thrilling 2-point victory over Fairmont High School, with defending champs George Washington just 10 back.

That win came courtesy of two state titles from sophomore Sarah Heilman, who was a versatile key piece for Wheeling Park. Heilman won the 100 fly individually, going 1:00.00 to barely touch out Fairmont’s Kelsie Drennen (1:00.22). The two would clash again in the 100 back, with Drennen winning this battle 1:00.51 to 1:00.77.

Heilman also swam backstroke on the Wheeling Park 200 medley relay, which won in 1:56.95, three tenths up on George Washington. Heilman was a field-best 27.84 on backstroke, joining Lydia Bischof (33.73 breaststroke), Victoria White (29.08 fly) and Kat Donzella (26.30 free) on the Wheeling Park relay.

Drennen and Fairmont won the 200 free relay late in the meet, going 1:42.90 on a 25.44 leadoff led from Drennen and a 24.79 anchor job from Adriana Abruzzino. Abruzzino also won the 200 free in 1:56.00.

Morgantown’s Courtney Deem also won a pair of events by wide margins. Deem went 2:11.58 to take the 200 IM, crushing the field by 7 seconds. Deem also went 52.40 to win the 100 free by about seven tenths of a second.

Top 5 Teams:

  1. Wheeling Park – 144
  2. Fairmont – 142
  3. George Washington 134
  4. Morgantown – 112
  5. Parkersburg – 111

Boys Meet


After winning five straight team titles from 2011 to 2015, George Washington High School saw their streak snapped last year by Parkersburg South. But the boys of George Washington started a new streak in 2016, led by four titles from senior Patrick Reed.

Reed won the 200 IM in 2:02.13, beating out a veteran field by 1.6 seconds. He also took the 100 breaststroke with a 1:00.98 (a winning margin of about three seconds) and came right off that event to swim a 49.61 leg of the winning 400 free relay. He joined Adam Sutton (51.91 leadoff), Robbie Hageboeck (50.92) and Cameron Penn (49.64) to go 3:22.08, beating out Parkersburg High.

Penn (25.80 back), Reed (28.56 breast), Hageboeck (25.60 fly) and Sutton (22.66 free) also combined to win the 200 medley relay to open the meet. Their 1:42.62 once again topped Parkersburg, this time by almost two seconds.

Parkersburg (not to be confused with last year’s champs Parkersburg South) finished second overall, nipping the 2015 champs by three points. David Snider won twice individually for Parkersburg, taking the 200 free in 1:48.70 and the 100 back in 54.23. Also doubling up was Nathan Burd, who took the 50 free (21.77) by a hundredth of a second and the 100 free (47.84) by a wider margin.

Parkersburgh South won the 200 free relay in 1:32.53, getting a 21.36 anchor split from Dominic Collins.

Top 5 Teams:

  1. George Washington – 134
  2. Parkersburg – 99
  3. Parkersburg South – 96
  4. Hurricane – 75
  5. University High – 73

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About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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