HICKORY — The Watauga swim team captured the Northwestern Conference championship by dominating the field at the Hickory YMCA on Jan. 23.
The Pioneers finished with 362 points, while second place South Caldwell was next with 235 points. Hickory was third with 233 points followed by St. Stephens with 220 points.
Watauga used overall depth and winning three relays to push past the rest of the field. The Pioneers won the 200-meter medley relay, with a team comprised of Josie Herring, Belle Temple, Greta Klein and Lindsey Williams. The team finished with a time of 2:04.69.
Watauga’s 200-relay team comprised of Kylah Jackson, Temple, Williams and Virginia St. Clair won the event with a time of 1:51.72. The Pioneers added a win in the 400-relay when the team of Lyndsey Whitehead-Price, Jackson, Nora Williams and St. Clair posted a time of 4:11.89.
The Pioneers did not win any individual races, but several swimmers placed in the top five of most events. Klein was second in the individual medley with a time of 2:35.46, while St. Clair was third with a time of 2:36.23. Sarah Ott finished eighth with a time of 3:00.56.
“The women’s team had a tremendous meet,” Watauga coach David Gragg said in a statement. “They started out fast in the 200 medley relay and after that never trailed again. I knew we would be near the top, but I kept expecting another team to make a push but no one really did. While we did not win a single individual event, we captured all three relays. That says a lot about our depth and our teamwork.”
Lindsey Williams was second in the 50-freestyle with a time of 26:04 and third in the 100-backstroke with a time of 1:06.64. Nora Williams was sixth with a time of 29.05 and Arielle Griffin was eighth with a time of 29.85. Griffin was also sixth in the 100-breaststroke with a time of 1:29.72.
Temple was fourth in the 100-butterfly with a time of 1:11.73 and was second in the 100-breaststroke with a time of 1:18.01. St. Clair added a third place in the 100-freestyle to her totals with a finish of 59:04. Herring was second in the event with a time of 1:20.69.
Jackson finished second in the 500-freestyle with a time of 5:18.48 while Whitehead-Price was fourth with a time of 6:38.16. Kline was also fourth in the 100-backstroke and Herring was seventh in the backstroke with a time of 1:13.06.
The 200-relay, the 400-relay and the 200-individual medley relays all qualified for the regional meet. St. Clair qualified in the 100-freestyle, Lindsey Williams qualified in the 100-backstroke, Klein qualified in the 100-backstroe and Temple qualified in the 100-breaststroke.
NWC boys’ championships
HICKORY — The Watauga boys’ swim team took fifth in the NWC championships held at the Hickory YMCA.
The Pioneers finished with 115 points. St. Stephens won the team competition with 330 points, while South Caldwell was second with 327 points.
Henryk Kosmala finished third in the 50-freestyle with a time of 24.09. Kosmala was also fourth in the 100-freestyle with a time of 53.88 and swam in the 200-medley relay with teammates Reid Triplett, Lewis Sellars and Levi Temple to take fifth with a time of 2:08.79.
Kosmala qualified for the regional in the 50-freestyle and the 100-freestyle.
Temple also finished seventh in the 100-butterfly with a tie of 1:11.78.
“On the men’s side we struggled with little depth, but Henryk Kosmala had another great meet,” Gragg said in a statement. “I was glad to see Victor Behrend-Martinez, Will Curtis, Arden Jackson, and Drew Jasper have some personal best times tonight. They had some big drops in time, and I was proud for each of them.”