Records fall left and right at WPIAL Class 2A swimming championships

Thursday, February 29, 2024 | 9:00 PM

Mt. Pleasant began the WPIAL Class 2A swimming championships at Pitt’s Trees Pool in the same manner North Allegheny did in Class 3A.

The only difference was the Vikings added another layer of dominance by breaking some records.

The Vikings posted a 1:47.32 in the 200 medley relay with a group of juniors in Lily King, Kiersten O’Connor, Kaylie Korpiel and Maddie Barrick.

“It was a great start to the meet and I’m happy to swim with a team that I love,” O’Connor said. “It takes a lot of teamwork to come out with a time like we did.”

O’Connor went on to repeat as the girls 50 free champion with a time of 23.61.

The boys relay team of senior Logan Snively, juniors David Mutter and Joseph Gardner and sophomore Gunnar Probst broke the WPIAL record set last year by North Catholic (1:35.80) with a blistering 1:34.15.

“Very excited to win, happy with where we’re at and stoked looking forward to states,” Snively said. “We’re a very tight-knit group and work really well together.”

“They’ve been getting better as the years have gone on, and I’m really proud of what they accomplished,” O’Connor said of how the boys performed and followed up the girls’ win.

King bested the WPIAL record she set last year in the 200 free by 1.35 seconds, posting a 1:46.01.

Mutter claimed the boys 100 fly with a WPIAL-record time of 48.30. Henry Miller of Southmoreland set the record (48.87) last year.

Not to be outdone, Indiana began to claim WPIAL records of their own.

Indiana junior and two-time returning champion Preston Kessler defended his title and set a WPIAL record by swimming a 1:38.26 in the 200 free. The previous record, held by Trevor Scheid of Shady Side Academy, stood since 2008. Mt. Pleasant’s Mutter came in second with a time of 1:41.24.

Fellow Indiana senior Alex Bauer brought another gold for Indiana and broke the WPIAL record for the 200 IM in the process. He finished with a time of 1:49.62, besting last year’s record holder, Matthew Purcell of Northgate (1:51.38).

The Indiana boys 200 free relay repeated with another WPIAL record (1:24.43), topping the school’s 1:26.24 from last year.

Indiana’s girls 200 medley relay placed third with a time of 1:49.17 and the boys placed fourth with a 1:38.18.

Hampton claimed its first gold of the day when Lainey Sheets topped the leader board in the 200 IM with a 2:03.02.

After finishing fourth in the event last year, Sheets was overjoyed at her finish.

“I’m really happy,” Sheets said. “I knew it was going to be a tough competition and that I would have to work really hard, so I’m happy to win.”

The Talbots’ 200 medley relays both placed high. The girls team of juniors Kevyn Fish and Maya Daugherty and twin sisters Lainey and Libby Sheets placed fourth with a time of 1:49.80.

“We all worked extremely hard and I’m glad to see that the work paid off,” Sheets said. “I know all the other girls are happy and excited about qualifying the relay for states.”

The boys placed third with the quartet of senior Zach Sutterlin, juniors Chris Belch, Scott Watkins and freshman Connor Sutterlin.

Kiski Area swimmers qualified for states in several events.

The girls 200 medley relay finished sixth with a time of 1:52.57 and the 200 free relay placed third with a 1:40.10. Senior Eliza Miller placed third in the girls 200 free (1:51.86), freshman Leah Kunkle (2:14.41) placed sixth and her sister, junior Paige Kunkle, finished eighth (2:15.76) in the girls 200 IM.

Junior Justin Tucker continued the qualifying for Kiski with a second-place finish in the boys 200 IM (1:54.45) and junior Riley Yute finished third (21.66) in the boys 50 free.

Junior Luke Lamb of North Catholic claimed the boys 50 free title with a time of 20.50. Senior Joseph Roth of Riverside placed second with a time of 21.15.

Freeport junior Kira Schrecongost placed first in the girls 100 fly with a time of 55.37. South Park senior Katie Jackovic was second (55.95) and senior Emily Connors of Quaker Valley was third (56.93).

Schrecongost also placed fourth in the girls 200 IM with a time of 2:07.81 and was a part of the Freeport girls 200 medley relay that placed second (1:47.84) behind Mt. Pleasant.

Quaker Valley’s girls 200 medley relay placed fifth with a time of 1:51.14, and senior Emily Connors, a member of that relay team, did well in her individual events.

Connors placed third in the 50 free with a time of 23.81 and third in the 100 fly, posting a 56.93, while junior Margaret Getty placed fifth in the girls 200 free (1:57.10).

Northgate girls took home the 200 free relay title (1:39.69) after Gateway, which finished first, was disqualified for an early start. Kiski Area placed second (1:40.10) and Mt. Pleasant was third (1:40.47).

At the end of the first day for Class 2A, Quaker Valley leads the girls team race with 149 points. Mt. Pleasant is second with 120 and Kiski Area sits third with 113.

On the boys side, Indiana is running away with 175 points. Mt. Pleasant is a distant second with 133.5, and Northgate rounds out the top three with 100.5.

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