Lauren Barber Doubles on Night Two of Christiansburg Sectionals

Photo Courtesy: Angus Smith

CHRISTIANSBURG – Lauren Barber of the Jewish Community Center Sailfish won the 100 breast and 400 IM, while the Coast Guard Blue Dolphins took over the lead in the combined team standings on night two of the Christiansburg Sectionals at the Christiansburg Aquatic Center.

The first full night of finals began with the 200 free, where Central Bucks Swim Team’s Morgan Scott cruised to a win in 1:48.39, a three second drop from her prelim performance. Greater Latrobe Aqua Club’s Monica Sowinski maintained her second place seeding with a two second drop and final time of 1:49.26. Coast Guard Blue Dolphins’ Maddie Morello rounded out the top three in 1:50.81. In the men’s race, Malvern Swimming Association’s Billy Beard posted a convincing win with the only sub-1:40 swim of the meet at 1:39.49. Columbia Aquatics Association’s Taye Baldinazzo dropped half a second from prelims and took second in 1:40.30, while Central Bucks Swim Team’s Joseph Vizza rounded out the top three in 1:40.49.

Jewish Community Center’s Lauren Barber dominated the women’s 100 breast final, racing to a time of 1:01.19, more than three seconds in front of Allegheny North Swim Club’s Ann Juneau (1:04.51). Brittany Weiss of Central Bucks Swim Team edged Pine Richland Aquatics’ Frances Dean by .01 for third, 1:05.87 to 1:05.88. Greater Philadelphia Aquatic Club’s Brendan McHugh, a national team member in the 100 breast in long course, made a statement in the short course version with a 52.39 in finals. Coast Guard Blue Dolphins’ Jared Norton finished a distant second in 55.98, while Allegheny North Swim Club’s Casey Melzer swam a 56.47 to place third.

The women’s 100 fly final came down to the last few yards, with Coast Guard Blue Dolphins’ Peyton Baldwin just getting the best of Machine Aquatics’ Lea Gwennap at the touch, 54.60 to 54.78. Columbia Aquatics Association’s Morgan Liberto swam a 56.08 to secure third. James Wilson of Lancaster Aquatic Club topped the men’s final in 48.93, slightly off his prelim swim of 48.62 but still comfortably in front of Blue Wave Swim Team’s Stephen Clendenin (49.28) and Malvern Swimming Association’s Billy Beard (49.36).

Lauren Barber picked up her second victory of the night in the women’s 400 IM, winning a nail-biter over Machine Aquatics’ Lea Gwennap, 4:14.91 to 4:14.96. Both had huge time drops from prelims, with Barber taking off five seconds and Gwennap dropping nearly 10. Coast Guard Blue Dolphins’ Nicole Piercy touched third in 4:26.96. Blue Wave Swim Team’s Stephen Clendenin topped the men’s race by about half a second, 3:57.45 to 3:58.02, over Mount Lebanon Aqua Club’s Drew Damich. Coast Guard Blue Dolphins’ Jared Norton also broke 4:00, placing third in 3:59.74.

The Coast Guard Blue Dolphins lead the combined team standings after day two with 199 points, while Nation’s Capital Swim Club (150 points) and Mount Lebanon Aqua Club (134 points) are in second and third.

Results from the meet can be found on Meet Mobile.

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Author: Emily Sampl

Emily Sampl, an editorial assistant for Swimming World Magazine, is a freelance writer for USA Swimming and an assistant coach at Boulder High School and Boulder Elks Swim Team in Colorado. Emily graduated with a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Colorado and master's degree in sport administration from the University of Northern Colorado.

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