Two Charlotte Observer-area teams won N.C. High School Athletic Association state 3A swimming championships Thursday night in Cary.
Charlotte Catholic girls won their 15th state championship, and their first since 2015. Marvin Ridge won its second straight title. On a night when UNC and Duke were heating up in basketball in Chapel Hill, 3A swimmers were doing the same in Cary, knocking off nine of the event’s 12 classification swim meet records.
For Catholic’s girls, Julia Menkhaus was an easy pick for meet MVP. She won all four events she swam in. In the 200 medley relay, she teamed up with Juliet Miechkowski, Madeline Menkhaus and Alina Stout to set a new 3A Meet record in the event (1 minute, 45.46 seconds). Later, she and Victoria Dichak, Madeline Menkhaus and Olwyn Bartis won the 400 Free Relay in 3:28.43.
Menkhaus was an individual winner in the 100 butterfly and the 100 backstroke. Her times of 53.84 in the fly and 53.70 in the back were meet records.
Also for Catholic, Bartis won twice: winning the 100 and 200 freestyle events.
▪ Marvin Ridge finished second in the team total with 240 points, well behind Catholic (298). Marvin Ridge, however, did not win a single event in the meet. Mavericks’ swimmer Ellie VanNote finished second in the 100 Butterfly behind Menkhaus, but VanNote’s time of :54.02 would have been the new 3A event record had she won.
Maverick relay teams finished third in both the 200 and 400 Free Relays while the group placed fourth in the 200 Medley Relay.
Katie Corbi from Weddington captured the 50 Free in a time of :23.73 while also swimming the anchor leg on the championship 200 Free Relay Squad. Corbi anchored the team of Maddy Flickinger, Amelia Kudela and Kelsey Tolchin as they posted a time of 1:36.15, three tenths of a second faster than Charlotte Catholic.
▪ Hickory’s Anna Durak won the 500 Free for Hickory in a time of 4:52.87 and Parkwood’s Kaylee Hamblin took first in the 100 Breaststroke posting a time of 1:03.08.
Marvin Ridge dominant in 3A Boys
In the boys event, Marvin Ridge finished with 246 points, ahead of Chapel Hill (203) and East Chapel Hill (189). Charlotte Catholic (183.5), in fourth place, was the highest-finishing Observer-area team.
▪ Cox Mill’s Patrick O’Brien set a new 3A Diving Meet record, scoring 497.10 winning the 3A Diving championship and breaking the meet record set by T.C. Roberson’s Ben Lane in 2008.
O’Brien won the event for the third straight year. Below is a video of his championship-winning dive.
▪ Marvin Ridge won two of the three relay events -- the 200 Free Relay and the 400 Free Relay. Sophomore Boyd Poelke, winner of the 50 Free, led off for Nicholas Piscitelli, Josh Stablein and Charles Rothenberger in the 200 Free Relay as the team set a new 3A Meet Record in 1:26.08. The performance shaved almost four-tenths of a second off of the time set by the Mavericks relay team in the 2017 finals. Poelke then anchored the 400 Free Relay team with Rothenberger, Matthew Shen and Stablein to post a new 3A record time of 3:10.82.
Noah Henderson from Western Alamance was named the meet’s Most Valuable Performer as he won the 100 Butterfly and the 100 Back. Henderson broke the 3A meet record in the 100 Back, touching in :48.58, breaking Eugene Godseo from Southeast Guilford’s 2006 record. Henderson also won the 100 Butterfly in :48.61.
▪ South Iredell’s Colson Zucker set 3A meet records in the 200 Individual Medley (1:40.20) and the 100 Breaststroke (56.02).