Saturday, February 24th, 2018
Local swimmers shine on last night of finals
Division II State Swimming
By Gary R. Rasberry
Compiled by Gary R. Rasberry
Assured of three appearances on the podium, Celina swimmers Keaton McMurray and Claire Gass along with teammates and swimmers from Fort Recovery looked to wrap up strong seasons in the Division II state swimming finals on Friday at Canton's C.T. Branin Natatorium.
McMurray, a sophomore, had two chances for an individual championship as he qualified for the A-Final in both the 50-yard freestyle and 100 backstroke. In the 50 free, McMurray swam slighly slower than his prelim time, but his 21.36 second-effort was good enough for sixth place. Later in the backstroke, McMurray came away with a seventh-place showing in 52.82 seconds.
"We're proud of him finishing like he did in the A-Finals," Celina coach Dawn Schwieterman said via telephone on the way back from Canton. "A great accomplishment."
Gass, a freshman, took her chance at the gold in the 100 breaststroke. Gass bettered her prelim time by over half-a-second and finished sixth in a time of 1:04.90.
The Celina 200 medley relay wrapped up its season in style as Gass teamed with Kenzie Conn, Amanda Slechter and Kennedy Newell to win the B-Final and earn ninth place with a time of 1:49.18.
The Bulldog 200 freestyle relay quartet of Conn, Zoe Rolfes, Emma Guggenbiller and McKenna Black finished fourth in their B-Final to take 12th overall with a time of 1:41.07.
"They really stepped it up, making the (B-Finals) of the 200 medley and 200 free," Schwieterman said. "They were all on their game. Proud of all the girls."
Newell also competed in B-Finals of the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle, finishing 13th overall in the 50 and 14th in the 100.
Fort Recovery wrapped up its fine season with B-Final performances in the 200 and 400 freestyles. In the 200 relay, Alexis Bubp, Sophie Timmerman, Paige Fortkamp and Cassy Martin finished 16th overall with a time of 1:42.60. In the 400 free relay, Ava Bubp replaced Fortkamp in the quartet as the Indians finished 14th overall in 3:44.17.
The Celina girls finished 14th overall in the standings with 57 points as Gates Mills Hawken won the team title. Fort Recovery finished 40th with eight points. McMurray's effort resulted in a 28th-place finish for the Bulldog boys.