NEW PALESTINE — If there were any doubts, the Greenfield-Central girls swimming and diving team put them to rest swiftly during the New Palestine Sectional on Saturday.
The defending champion Cougars won seven events overall, including two relays, to claim their fifth straight sectional team title with a score of 502 points.
Greenfield-Central’s final tally outpaced the field by more than 160 points, with Mt. Vernon coming in second with 336.5 and host New Palestine in third with 284.5. Connersville was fourth (265), Centerville was fifth (243), Richmond was sixth (188) and Eastern Hancock placed seventh (145).
“The girls team won their fifth consecutive sectional championship, sending several individuals and two relays to the state meet,” Cougars head coach Emily Logan commented. “This is one of the youngest teams we have ever had and they performed like veterans. I could not be more proud of these girls.”
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Cougars’ junior Carley Logan and senior Braedy Laymon each won four events, while joining forces in two of them.
The tandem helped lead the 400-yard freestyle relay team, which also consisted of Megan Coffin and Anne Marie DeKeyser, to a first-place swim in a time of 3:46.03.
They teamed with Taylor Amos and DeKeyser in the 200 freestyle relay to win in 1:42.73, ahead of New Palestine at 1:44.71.
Individually, Logan won the 200 free in 2:00.05 with teammate Elizabeth Harris in second (2:04.99). She was also first in the 500 free in front of Harris (5:38.01) with a winning time of 5:22.47.
Laymon won the 50 free in 24.96 and placed first in the 100 free at 53.78, just ahead of DeKeyser (56.17), who was second.
Reilly Hodnett, Daija Scurlock and Sarah Stutz finished 2-3-4 in the 100 backstroke for the Cougars. Coffin won the 100 breaststroke in 1:07.34.
Greenfield-Central placed third or better in 12 events, including a runner-up performance by Maci Montgomery in the 1-meter diving competition.
Mt. Vernon scored key points with a sectional championship swim in the 200 medley relay, which included Maddie Moore, Zoey Musick, Riese Thornton and senior Lydia Tierney.
The foursome surged past runner-up New Palestine (1:56.46) and third-place Greenfield-Central (1:56.77) with a time of 1:55.65.
Tierney won the 200 IM for the Marauders in 2:09.54. She was also first in the 100 butterfly with a time of 59.15 to beat New Palestine’s Jessica Rogers (1:02.88), who took second. Greenfield-Central’s Hannah Russo was third at 1:03.20.
Musick was third in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:09.71. Isabelle Grandstaff placed fifth in the 100 backstroke in 1:09.10 ahead of Moore in 1:09.25.
The Mt. Vernon 200 free relay was fourth in 1:48.75 and included Tierney, Musick, Moore and Thornton. Madalyn Mull was fifth in the 100 butterfly in 1:08.00.
Halle Strege and Gracesyn Thomas finished third and fourth, respectively, in diving, ahead of New Palestine’s Karen Shriver in fifth.
New Palestine’s runner-up 200 medley relay group included Maria Virt, Hailee Holbertson, Rogers and Anna Doolin. Rogers was fourth in the 50 free.
Doolin placed fourth in the 100 fee with a time of 57.25. The Dragons 200 free relay group consisted of Rogers, Doolin, Holbertson and Virt. Holbertson was fourth in the 100 breaststroke.
Eastern Hancock had three top-five finishers. Megan Marcum was fifth in the 200 free at 2:10.26. Elise Huffman was fifth in the 500 free at 6:02.01. The 200 free relay team of Megam Marcum, Tatum Profitt, Huffman and Ellie Griesmeyer were fifth at 1:50.51.