Jayla Brown

Cambridge swimmer Jayla Brown competes during an event this season.

The Georgia High School Association (GHSA) Swimming and Diving State Championships will take place at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center Feb. 6 through 8.

Cambridge will have 26 athletes participating in the state meet. The girls’ squad includes senior Abby Grottle who will be in seven individual events and freshman Sophie Brinson in six. Sophomore Clarie Kerber will be in five events as an individual and junior Jayla Brown in three.

The boys’ team for the Bears features senior Matthew Gaines in four individual events, sophomore Ben Grottle in six and junior Billy Blood in five. Cambridge also has seven divers overall at the state meet: Seniors Noor El-Gazairly, Margeaux Messier, Maddox Riddick, juniors Kate McKay and Jack Oblen as well as sophomores Brendan Hunt and Emilija Ragaine.

“Our season has been excellent,” Bears coach Lauren Hall said. “We expect our girls to do exceptionally well and hope to win the whole meet for 6A. We have a very talented group this year and anticipate doing very well at the state meet.”

Blessed Trinity will be active in the Class 4A-5A competition. The boys’ team features eight swimmers led by sophomore Daniel Bataillon who will be in six individual events. Seniors PJ White, Nate Matthews and Joseph Palmich will also be in individual competitions while senior Matt Thompson, juniors Will Hakes, Owen Jaskwhich along with freshman Ben Dunlap will be part of relay units. Senior diver Alec O’Reilly will also represent the Titans at the competition.

The Blessed Trinity girls’ team includes nine swimmers: seniors Grace Findlay, Rachel Saxon, Maggie Pokorny, Maura McGlynn, Tessa Weidner, juniors Kate Baker and Brenna Sculac, sophomore Amelia Cooper and freshman Loren Baker.

“Blessed Trinity has had a very successful swim season so far,” Titans coach Ilaria Bruce said. “We won several of our meets and the entire team improved in times and for diving in points scored. We are training hard for the State meet and hoping to have some great performances, setting new records and hitting new personal achievements.”

St. Francis will send two top athletes to the state meet. Sophomore Gia Pergolini, who is also on the United States Paralympic National team, will be in two individual events. Junior Nick Denkman will also represent the Knights at State.

Mount Pisgah Christian has qualified swimmers in the state meet for the first time in program history. The Patriots have nine girl swimmers including freshmen Maddy Childress and Emma Livezey along with junior Haley Agin. The boys’ squad has four swimmers including junior Eli Haverdink and Chris Rose.

“The season is going well,” Mount Pisgah coach Grant Norwood said. “Early morning practices are the focus between now and next Friday to prepare swimmers for their individual and relay races at Georgia Tech.”

Wesleyan has 17 total athletes who will be at the state meet led by boys’ swimmers Colton Villa, Christopher Harrell and Jack Godfrey along with diver Jacob Price. The girls’ team includes Hannah Wasmuth, Carson Schiller and Caroline Stewart.

Pace held its Last Chance Invitational Jan. 24 and 25 with many local swimmers looking to reach qualifying times for the state meet.

Lovett saw freshman Madison King have a personal-best time in the 500-yard freestyle to reach state. Other Lions’ qualifiers included senior Brett Hull in the 50-yard freestyle, junior Cameron Colavito in the 100-yard freestyle along with senior Pross Watts and freshman Katherine O’Brien in the 100-yard breaststroke. Other individual swimmers who have qualified include senior Blaise Achecar, juniors Avery Bargeron and Cameron Colavito as well as sophomore Russell Overly. Lovett will also have three divers in senior Cole Arndt, junior Harrison Clifton and freshman Molly Bradbury at the state meet.

Holy Innocents’ had a strong showing at the Pace meet. Diver Spencer Pearson, the defending state champion, won the meet while teammate Jules Ford placed second. Sterling Hartrich won the 200 freestyle to qualify for state. Other Golden Bears swimmers in Sydney Sprayberry (200-yard individual medley), Maddie Poch (200 freestyle) and Abigail Wells (100-yard backstroke) also had a strong showing in the meet ahead of state competition.

Pace will have several athletics at the state meet starting with junior All-American diver Elizabeth Kaye, the two-time defending champion. Senior Erin Hood will be in multiple individual events and three relays. Other girls swimmers at state will be senior Meghan McMillin and junior Amalie Little. Freshmen Barrett Hight and Carter Freudenstein along with senior Jason Rosenbloum and junior Rivers Graham will be in the boys’ competition for the Knights.

In other news, Cambridge’s wrestling team won the Region 7AAAAAA Traditional competition held in Marietta Feb. 1. The Bears now have 12 wrestlers who have qualified for the Sectionals in Douglasville Feb. 7 through 8: Cullen Cane (106 pounds), Ben Werth (120), Sebastian Shered (132), Kyle Romano (138), Nicholas Barton (145), Kalem Kozma (152), Brenden Boyd (160), Evan Kurtz (170), Gavin Kane (180), Mike Hudson (195), Connor McHugh (220) and Julian Petty (285).

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