Athletes set 7 records at WCCA swimming championships

Saturday, January 28, 2023 | 8:51 PM

It was another record day for swimmers at the annual Westmoreland County Coaches’ Association swimming and diving championships Saturday at Derry Area High School.

Six individual records were set, and one relay team set a new mark.

Leading the way was Mt. Pleasant sophomore Lily King, who shattered records in the 100- and 200-yard freestyle events. Her times were 1 minute, 49.27 seconds in the 200 freestyle, breaking the mark of 1:54.27, and 49.63 in the 100 freestyle, breaking the record of 50.78.

She also anchored the record-setting 200 medley relay with Kiersten O’Connor, SaraJo Gardner and McKenna Mizikar. The new time was 1:45.52, beating the mark of 1:48.56.

“My times in the individual races were personal records,” King said. “I didn’t expect my time in the 200 to be what it was, so I was so excited about that. And I wasn’t expecting to get that time, either. I was pleasantly surprised by all of my times and so happy how it went.”

She also had a career-best 22.17 in one of her splits for one of the relay teams. She also anchored the winning 400 freestyle relay of Reegan Brown, Mizikar and Trinity Graft.

“I overthink a lot,” King said. “But I have a lot of support around me from my coaches and to my teammates. We have a great team.”

The Mt. Pleasant girls (Class 2A) took the team title with 362 points. Latrobe was second with 304. The Wildcats won the Class 3A title.

Mt. Pleasant sophomore Joe Gardner, Franklin Regional senior Aiden Bunker, Kiski Area senior Parker Sterlitz and Franklin Regional junior Holden Thomas also set records.

Gardner’s record came in the 100 breaststroke (56.87), Bunker in the 200 IM (1:54.40), Sterlitz in the 500 freestyle (4:39.34) and Thomas in the 100 backstroke (49.81).

Sterlitz and junior teammate Eliza Miller were the others to join King as a two-time individual winners. Sterlitz won the 500 and 200 freestyles, and Miller won the 500 freestyle and 100 breaststroke.

Sterlitz also swam a leg for the 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams.

“It was a great day,” Sterlitz said. “We have a really good team, and to be able to come here and win four times in pretty nice. But like I said, it comes back to the team around me. I couldn’t have done it without them. They’re a great group.”

The Kiski Area boys (Class 2A) finished second overall with 285 points to first-place Franklin Regional (3A) with 298.

Miller, an accomplished runner for the Cavaliers, said she’s been working hard on the 500 because it will help her in college with track.

“I broke my school record again, so that was really exciting,” Miller said. “In the 100 breaststroke I just went out to see what I could do. I tried to use the girls in my heat. It’s cool to win back-to-back years.”

Miller won the 200 IM and 100 breaststroke last winter.

Other winners in the girls competition were Norwin senior Anna Little (200 IM), Mt. Pleasant sophomore O’Connor (50 freestyle), Latrobe sophomore Lauren Bell (100 butterfly) and Hempfield senior Camryn Watters (100 backstroke).

Other winners of boys races were Hempfield senior Dominic Falcon (50 freestyle), Mt. Pleasant sophomore David Mutter (100 butterfly) and Penn-Trafford junior Patton Graziano (100 freestyle).

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at

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