By Sarah Eckersley
CARY, North Carolina, February 16. CHARLOTTE Catholic and Cardinal Gibbons walked away with state titles at the North Carolina 3A High School State Championships. The Charlotte Catholic girls tallied 432 points for first followed by Chapel Hill (246) and Tuscola (238). On the boys' side, Cardinal Gibbons took first with 249 points while Charlotte Catholic placed second (199) and Chapel Hill finished third (191).
Charlotte Catholic won all three relays. Erin Gaeckle, Christen McDonough, Dana Pruitt, and Ashlyn Koletic set a meet record in the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:46.96. McDonough also set a meet record in the 100 breaststroke (1:03.82).
Gaeckle was a dual event winner in the 200 freestyle (1:52.67) and the 100 backstroke. She set a meet record in the 100 backstroke with a time of 56.59. The previous record (57.77) was set in 1998 by Shelby's Amy Hendrick.
Allie Miller, Cara Gilligan, Julia Neal, and McDonough set a meet record in the 200 freestyle relay (1:39.71). The previous record (1:41.37) was set by Walter Williams High School's Waters, Carrico, Robertson, and Bardin in 2005.
Koletic won the sprint races with times of 24:48 (50 freestyle) and 53.22 (100 freestyle).
Chapel Hill's Katie Leonard won the diving competition with a score of 325.10 followed by teammate Gabby Alexander (285.35) and Charlotte Catholic's Beth Rusterholz (237.45).
Gaeckle, Miller, Gilligan, and Pruitt closed the meet with a meet record time of 3:35.78 in the 400 freestyle relay.
Cardinal Gibbons won two of three relays. Wesley Sigmon, Adam Fullerton, Nathan Walters, and Ryan Czejkowski won the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:39.51.
Graham Williams (Hickory) was a dual event winner in the 200 and 500 freestyles. He finished with times of 1:44.01 and 4:37.27, respectively.
Top finishers in the diving competition include Eastern Wayne's Collin Hobbs (296.25), Asheville's Taylor Hunt (231.95), and Eastern Wayne's Denzel Benjamin (230.70).
Senior Jacob White (Marvin Ridge) won the 50 freestyle with a time of 22.02. He teamed up with Evan White, McKee Christiansen, and Lane Bretschneider for a win in the 200 freestyle relay (1:31.30).
Other first-place finishers include Michael Baric (Eastern Alamance) in the 200 IM (1:54.28), Bobby Bittner (West Carteret) in the 100 butterfly (50.93), Sava Turcanu (St. Stephens) in the 100 freestyle (47.93), Zack Lambert (Hickory Ridge) in the 100 backstroke (52.13), and Christopher Dong in the 100 breaststroke (58.09).
Bailey Maloney teamed up with Sigmon, Fullerton, and Walters for a win in the 400 freestyle relay (3:16.53).
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