The 2016 North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) Swimming & Diving Regional meets were held at multiple sites across the state this weekend. Some two dozen swimmers from the area competed at Triangle Aquatic Center in Cary for 3A and 4A competitions.
The top eight fastest times from each regional qualified for NCHSAA Championships, which will be held February 10-13.
Ten relay teams from Hoggard, New Hanover, South Brunswick, Topsail and West Brunswick clinched a spot in next week’s state meet. Dustin Ruppart (West Brunswick), McKenzie White (South Brunswick), Tyler Bowersox (South Brunswick), Chris Anselmo (South Brunswick) and Lauren Marshall (Topsail) also qualified for multiple events as individuals.
Of the 24 teams at each competition, Chapel Hill and Corinth-Holders cruised to first and second place as a team in 3A East Regional. South Brunswick had the best showing off any local school as the Cougars combined for third place after 23 events.
The Cougars will be represented by 10 swimmers and two alternates at states.
“The kids were unbelievable in the pool yesterday,” said South Brunswick Coach Sam Jennings. “They were ready to swim and put their minds to it. Tyler Bowersox was phenomenal last night. He has been working for two years to break a minute in the 100 breast and finally did it. Chris Anselmo is swimming year-round and I’m excited for him because last year at this time he was dealing with a shoulder injury and had troubles at the regional meet.”
Ruppart was the only area swimmer to claim top spot in an event. The senior from West Brunswick took first place in 200 yard freestyle with a time of 1:48.45, edging Jacob Werden’s (Chapel Hill) time of 1:49.48.
Anselmo took seventh place in 200 yard freestyle and the junior finished fifth in 100 yard freestyle. Ruppart grabbed fourth place in 500 yard freestyle.
Chris Anselmo also teamed up with brother, Matt Anselmo, Tyler Bowersox and Owen Bell for a third-place effort in 200 yard medley relay.
White took fourth in 100 yard backstroke and fifth in 100 yard butterfly, while Bowersox finished runner-up in the same events. Topsail’s Marshall placed sixth in 100 yard freestyle and seventh in 100 yard backstroke.
White will also swim in 200 yard medley relay and 200 yard freestyle relay along with Bailey Rudd, Elizabeth Palmquist and Hannah Scharf.
“McKenzie White was consistent as always,” Jennings added. “She is a swimmer that builds all season long. She is always primed and ready for the championship meets. Other individual performers were Owen Bell, Matt Anselmo, and Hannah Scharf, who all made it into states with individual events. They swam well and deserve the credit of moving on to the state meet. As a team we had a great group effort.”
In 4A East Regional, Anthony Messina was the lone swimmer from Wilmington to clinch a spot in states. He placed fifth in 100 yard freestyle.
The Hoggard boys had a relay team qualify in the 200 yard freestyle, while New Hanover girls placed seventh in 400 yard freestyle relay.
Local swimmers to qualify for states
- Anthony Messina, fifth place, 100 yard freestyle
- Hoggard boys, (Adam Coleman, Jacob Hannum, Finn Howard, Carter Howe), seventh place, 200 yard freestyle relay
- New Hanover girls, (Aleta Jewell, Lucy Gittings, Brynn Jewell, Rhianne Hsu), seventh place, 400 yard freestyle relay
- South Brunswick girls, (Hannah Scharf, Elizabeth Palmquist, McKenzie White, Bailey Rudd), fourth place, 200 yard medley relay
- South Brunswick boys, (Owen Bell, Tyler Bowersox, Chris Anselmo, Matt Anselmo), third place, 200 yard medley relay
- Dustin Ruppart, West Brunswick, first place, 200 yard freestyle
- Dustin Ruppart, West Brunswick, fourth place, 500 yard freestyle
- Chris Anselmo, South Brunsiwck, seventh place, 200 yard freestyle
- Chris Anselmo, fifth place, 100 yard freestyle
- Delaney Popella, Topsail, fifth place, 50 yard freestyle
- Owen Bell, South Brunswick, sixth place, 50 yard freestyle
- McKenzie White, South Brunswick, fourth place, 100 yard butterfly
- McKenzie White, Sotuh Brunswick, third place, 100 yard backstroke
- Tyler Bowersox, South Brunswick, second place, 100 yard butterfly
- Tyler Bowersox, South Brunswick, second place, 100 yard breaststroke
- Lauren Marshall, Topsail, sixth place, 100 yard freestyle
- Lauren Marshall, Topsail, seventh place, 100 yard backstroke
- South Brunswick girls, (Bailey Rudd, Elizabeth Palmquist, Hannah Scharf, McKenzie White), fourth place, 200 yard freestyle relay
- Topsail girls, (Danielle Swiss, Kelsey Eaves, Lauren Marshall, Delaney Popella), fifth place, 200 yard freestyle relay
- Topsail boys, (Brandon Croom, Peyton Rice, Gavin Finley, Mason Sessions), eighth place, 200 yard freestyle relay
- Hannah Scharf, South Brunswick, eighth place, 100 yard breaststroke
- Matt Anselmo, South Brunswick, fourth place, 100 yard breaststroke
- Topsail girls, (Scout Pennington, Kerste Parrella, Danielle Swiss, Lauren Marshall), third place, 400 yard freestyle relay
- South Brunswick boys, (Owen Bell, Teddy Johnson, Cameron Kelly, Matt Anselmo), third place, 400 yard freestyle relay
- West Brunswick boys, (David Venegas, Tommy Fallon, Tyler Hucks, Dustin Ruppart), sixth place, 400 yard freestyle relay
Boys: No. 1 Chapel Hill, 1009.5, No. 2 Corinth-Holders, 643; No. 3 South Brunswick, 334; No. 7 Topsail, 205.5; No. 17 West Brunswick, 79
Girls: No. 1 Chapel Hill, 969.5; No. 2 Corinth-Holders, 609; No. 3 South Brunswick, 302; No. 6 Topsail, 187.5;