Members of the Starr’s Mill swim team cheer on the final 400-yard freestyle relay. The relay team placed first and helped secure the win for the Panthers who defeated McIntosh by seven points. (MacKenzie Jadick)
Members of the Starr’s Mill swim team cheer on the final 400-yard freestyle relay. The relay team placed first and helped secure the win for the Panthers who defeated McIntosh by seven points.

MacKenzie Jadick

Swim wins 22nd consecutive County Championship

February 3, 2022

The Starr’s Mill Swim Team competed last week at the County Championship. With the chance of the 21-year long streak being snapped, the Panthers brought home another championship, edging out McIntosh 706-699.

The girls competed first and the team found themselves 21 points behind crosstown rival McIntosh. When they boys competed last Friday night the consistent swimming helped close the gap and secure the 22nd straight win for the team.

Girls swim places second at County Championships

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Craig Bardo

Sophomore Katie Rausch races a McIntosh swimmer in the 4×50-yard medley relay. Rausch swam the backstroke leg of the relay that placed first ahead of McIntosh by .6 seconds.

The Starr’s Mill girls swim team placed second at the 2022 Fayette County Championship last week. They finished 21 points behind school rival McIntosh. 

“County was very tense,” senior Blakeley Wingo said. 

The girls team had placed second behind McIntosh every time they faced each other this season. Head coach Robin Huggins attempted to strategically place girls in their best events and construct relays to beat the Chiefs. 

Although the team placed second they had lots of wins throughout the meet on January 25th.

In the first event, the 200-yard medley relay, sophomores Katie Rausch and Emma Frank, junior Julianna Carle, and senior Alana Burrows finished first. The relay edged out the McIntosh relay by .6 seconds.

The Panthers had swimmers place in the top 5 of each event throughout the entire meet. Most notably:

200 individual medley – senior Kenzie Tucker and Burrows 

50 freestyle – junior Amelia Santos and senior Maddie Bacon

100 butterfly – Burrows [qualified for GHSA State Championship] and freshman Ella Glinski

500 freestyle – Bacon

100 backstroke – Rausch

100 breaststroke – Tucker

“It was scary. We don’t like to be behind at all but 21 points was a lot,” head coach Robin Huggins said. “The girls did well, they swam hard, and I don’t feel like anybody didn’t give their very best.”

Boys swim places first at County Championship

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MacKenzie Jadick

Senior Peter Beardsley races in the 100-yard backstroke in the Country Championship last Friday. He placed 7th with a time of 1:15.97.

The boys swim team closed a 21-point gap to win the school’s 22nd straight Country Championship. 

Overall, the team edged out McIntosh by a mere seven points to secure the win.  

“It was one of the most stressful county meets,” boys head coach Derek Abrams said. “We were able to pull it off, and we are so excited.” 

The team was head to head with McIntosh throughout the county meet and came down to the last 400-yard freestyle relay. The Panthers were down by one point, needing to place in the top 3 with two relays to finish ahead of McIntosh. 

Senior Seth Roach, freshman Braeden Roach, junior Jimmy Callaghan, and senior Samin Sayani won the final relay with a time 3:20.44, four seconds ahead of the McIntosh relay. 

The B relay, consisting of senior Peter Beardsley, sophomores Jonah Hendreickson and Ishan Kasaju, and freshman Jacob Ramsey took third place and helped score more points to push the team ahead of McIntosh. 

“We all knew the A and B relay both needed to get first, second or third to help solidify the win,” Beardsley said.

The Panthers had swimmers place in the top 5 of each event throughout the entire meet. Most notably:

200 freestyle – Braden and Callaghan 

200 individual medley – Sayani and sophomore Carter Heim

100 butterfly – Seth and Heim

50 freestyle – junior Bruce Allen and senior JD Arnold 

100 freestyle – Braeden, Allen, and Kasaju 

500 freestyle – Callaghan

100 back – Seth and Ramsey

100 breast- Sayani, senior Ian Humphrey, and junior Michael Lin

 The Panthers will send 22 swimmers to the GHSA State Championships at Georgia Tech this Friday and Saturday.

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