Lawton Chiles Girls Defend Florida 3A State Championship Title; Sarasota Boys Win

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Photo Courtesy: FHSAA Twitter (@FHSAA)

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After deciding to move on with its postseason, the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) hosted the 3A State Championships on Friday, Nov. 6 at the Sailfish Splash Waterpark and Aquatics Center in Stuart, Fla.

Lawton Chiles earned the team title on the girls’ side for the second-straight year, finishing with 242 points ahead of runner-up Fleming Island (208). The boys of Sarasota secured the championship crown with a final score of 254.5, outlasting defending champions Barron Collier (200).

Click HERE for full results and team scores.

GIRLS MEET

Top 5 Team Scores:

1. Lawton Chiles – 242
2. Fleming Island – 208
3. Countryside – 188
4. Fort Myers – 164
5. Osceola Fundamental – 149

The meet began as Lawton Chiles’ Sarah Grimm (26.90), Emma Grimm (29.79), Abree Clark (25.93), and Christine Johnson (24.35) won the opening 4×50 medley relay in 1:46.97, only slightly ahead of runner-up Fort Myers (1:47.09). Osceola Fundamental’s Carina Lumia dove to first on the 1-meter board for the second-straight year, posting a final score of 475.55.

Freedom’s Michelle Morgan was victorious in the 200 IM with a time of 2:00.92, finishing over a second ahead of last year’s champion and U.S. National Junior teamer Olivia McMurray of Fort Myers. McMurray, a future Texas Longhorn, then went on to successfully defend her state title in the 500 free, turning in a time of 4:46.44 to beat the field by two seconds.

Lawton Chiles’ Lydia Hanlon flew to first place in the 100 fly, clocking in a 53.73 for the second-consecutive year, while Cardwell was the runner-up in 54.24. Hanlon later won the 100 back for the third-straight season, posting a final time of 54.44 as the only athlete in the race under 55 seconds.

Pace’s Emma Wortman got her hands to the wall the fastest in the 100 breast with a time of 1:03.32 ti best the field by over a full second. Countryside sophomore Summer Cardwell successfully defended her state title in the 200 free, stopping the clock in 1:48.40 as the only swimmer to crack the 1:50-barrier.

After placing second in 2019, Port St. Lucie’s Sarah Evan sprinted to the top of the podium in the 50 free, finishing the race in a final time of 23.41. Countryside’s Gisella Wright had an impressive showing in the 100 free, winning the state title in 50.84 while Winter Springs’ Julia Mauter, an Akron commit, again finished second (52.17).

Wright (23.77) combined with teammates Cardwell (23.37), Abigail Taugner (24.44), and Ugne Koveraite (23.92) to give Countryside a win in the 4×50 free relay with a final time of 1:35.50. Wright (51.61), Megan German (53.62), Taugner (54.17), and Cardwell (50.13) joined forces again to win the 4×100 free relay in 3:29.53.

BOYS MEET

Top 5 Team Scores:

1. Sarasota – 254.5
2. Barron Collier – 200
3. Lawton Chiles – 190.5
4. Countryside – 170
5. Osceola Fundamental – 126

Barron Collier’s William Eriksson (25.11), Andrew Garner (25.20), Mason Laur (21.42), and Charles Marsala (21.20) got the boys’ meet off to a quick start by winning the 4×50 medley relay in 1:32.93. Garner (20.70), Marsala (21.52), Marc Savolle (21.99), and Laur (20.79) teamed up to win the 4×50 free relay in 1:25.00.

Garner, who finished second in the 100 free a year ago, redeemed himself this season by winning the event in a swift 45.28 ahead of Land O Lakes’ Zuri Ramsey (45.87). The soon-to-be Golden Gopher got his hands to the wall the quickest in the 100 breast, clocking in at 55.07.

Forest’s Riley Sampson cruised to first in the 200 free, touching the wall in 1:38.78 as the only swimmer in the race to sneak under the 1:40-mark. After taking second in the 500 free in 2019, he won the event this year in 4:26.15 – but it proved to be a close race as Countryside’s Andrew Taylor was close behind in 4:26.20.

It was deja-vu from 2019: Barron Collier’s Mason Laur touched the wall in 1:46.53 for a win in the 200 IM ahead of Hayden Kwan of Lawton Chiles who raced to second in 1:48.78. Laur, who is headed off to Florida next fall, flew to the top of the podium in the 100 fly in a quick 48.21, only two-tenths ahead of defending champion Andrew Billitto of Seminole (48.41).

Kwan, a Stanford commit, completed his three-peat in the 100 back after winning the event in 48.62 ahead of future Boilermaker Lance Lesage of St. Thomas Aquinas (48.80). After taking second in the 50 free, Ramsey splashed and dashed his way to the 50 free state title, stopping the clock in 20.51 for the second-straight year.

South Fort Myers’ Brandon Shepherd dominated the 1-meter board to defend his title, posting a final score of 490.60. Countryside’s Matthew Ross (46.84), Peyton Walters (47.22), Taylor (47.06), and Joey Burns (45.60) concluded the meet by claiming victory in the 4×100 free relay with a combined time of 3:06.72.