CHARLOTTE – The South Meck boys backed up their recent conference championship by winning the NCHSAA 4A Western Regional on Feb. 2.
While the Sabres boys dominated, Myers Park, Providence and Ardrey Kell joined South Meck as the four area powers littered the leaderboards of the boys and girls races.
The Sabre boys, who won the 2015, 2016 and 2017 state championships, got first-place finishes from the 200 medley relay team, Garrett Boone who took first in both the 200 IM and in the 100 freestyle and Luke Foster on the 1-meter platform diving.
The Sabres took first with 388.5 points, just ahead of rivals Ardrey Kell (364.5), Myers Park (339) and Providence (231) who made up the top four. Butler (74 points, 10th) and Independence (17 points, 16th) also competed.
On the girls side, Myers Park finished with 389 points, which trailed Hough by just 10 points. Providence (278, third), South Meck (272, fifth), Ardrey Kell (253, sixth), Butler (55, ninth), Independence (14, 16th) and Porter Ridge (four, 17th).
Myers Park’s Jack Walker and Liza Whitmore joined Ardrey Kell’s Sean Teague and South Meck’s Ellie Marquardt in winning multiple individual titles while also starring on relays.
Marquardt was sensational, winning the 500 freestyle – where she smashed the meet record by over 2.2 seconds – and the 200 freestyle, where Marquardt missed the meet record by 0.17 seconds.
Marquardt also anchored the Sabres victorious 400 freestyle relay alongside Katie Rauch, Haley Robinson and Brynn Martinson.
Walker took gold in the 200 freestyle and in the 500 freestyle while Whitmore won both the 200 IM and 100 breaststroke.
In addition, Whitmore was a member of the regional champion 200 freestyle relay team alongside Janie Smith, Whitmore, Maya Gendzel and Olwyn Bartis and teamed with Claire Russell Bartis and Smith to win the 200 medley relay as well.
Teague led the Knights by taking wins in the 100 backstroke and in the 50 freestyle.
In addition, Teague teamed with Justin Cummings, Leo Tutovani and Jason Lee to win the 200 freestyle relay and partnered with Tutovani, Jack Valliquette and Josh Fletcher to win the 400 freestyle relay title.
The Knights also had a pair of individual girl winners as Abby Mastrantoni (1-meter diving) and Teresa Ivan (100 freestyle) won regional titles.