The conclusion of the 2018-19 academic calendar provides time to review the accomplishments of the Northside prep programs on the field.

In the fall, Pace and Westminster met each other for the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) Class 3A volleyball state championship. After dropping the first set, the Knights rebounded to win the next three to secure its second consecutive state title, 3-1. It was Pace’s second championship in program history.

St. Pius X brought home the Class 4A volleyball state title with a 3-1 win over Marist in the championship match. It was the second state title in program history for the Golden Lions.

Other volleyball teams that made the postseason were Mount Vernon Presbyterian, Wesleyan, Atlanta International, Galloway, Holy Innocents’, Lovett, Woodward, North Springs and Riverwood.

The GHSA cross country state championships saw several local programs bring home the top prize starting with the Wesleyan boys’ team, which won the Class A Private state title with 110 points. Whitefield (114 points) and Holy Innocents’ (117 points) rounded out the top three. It was the Wolves’ first title since 2014 and ninth overall.

Atlanta International brought home the Class A Private Girls’ championship with 82 points. Wesleyan was second with 96 points and Holy Innocents’ was fourth. Golden Bears runner Jackie Addy won the individual event in 19 minutes, 2.77 seconds. Eagles runners Reagan Mahoney and Cara Joyce were second and fourth respectively to pace their squad to the team title.

The Westminster boys’ team won the Class 3A competition with 45 points, followed by Lovett in second and Pace in fourth. It was the Wildcats’ second consecutive state title and 25th in program history.

The Westminster girls’ team was also successful with a 3A title of its own. The Wildcats had 49 points and were followed by Lovett (59) and Pace (72). Westminster’s Naima Turbes won the individual championship with a time of 19:01.96, followed by teammates Janie Cooper in fourth, Katherine Vuckovic in fifth and Olivia Tordella in 10th. It was the Wildcats’ fifth consecutive state title and 31st overall.

St. Pius X saw its boys’ team bring home the 4A state title for the ninth time in program history. The Golden Lions had 37 points followed by Marist with 100 points. Marist’s Leif Anderson won the individual event in 16:17.75.

Marist’s girls team won the 4A state championship with 42 points led by Kathleen Maley, who brought home the individual crown for the War Eagles at 19:22.17. It’s Marist’s 10th consecutive state title and 19th overall. St. Pius X was second with 60 points.

The Riverwood boys’ and girls’ teams each were seventh in the 5A competition.

The Wesleyan softball team returned to the Class A Private state tournament at the Columbus Softball Complex looking to win its second consecutive championship. The Wolves produced a dominant run of outscoring their opponents 33-1 through four games, culminating with a 7-0 victory over Prince Avenue Christian in the title contest. Wesleyan finished the season with 26 wins. Other postseason teams in softball included Holy Innocents’, Mount Vernon, Westminster, Lovett, Marist, Woodward, North Springs and Riverwood.

The football state playoffs included Holy Innocents’, Mount Vernon, Whitefield, Wesleyan, Pace, Westminster, Lovett, Marist, St. Pius X, Woodward and Riverwood.

In the winter, the Holy Innocents’ girls’ basketball team took home the Class A Private state championship with a 75-48 victory over Wesleyan in the title game. The win secured the Golden Bears’ third state championship in program history and first since 2016. Holy Innocents’ also won the title after falling to the Wolves in the previous two state title contests and three of the last four.

Other local girls’ basketball programs to qualify for the GHSA state playoffs were Galloway, Lovett, Pace, Woodward, Marist, St. Pius X and Riverwood. Holy Spirit Prep’s girls’ team won the Georgia Independent Schools Association (GISA) Class AAA state title.

Boys’ basketball programs in the GHSA postseason were Galloway, Westminster, Pace, Marist, St. Pius X, Woodward, Riverwood and North Atlanta. Holy Spirit’s boys team was also in the GISA playoffs, finishing second in AAA.

The GHSA swimming and diving state championships featured Westminster’s boys’ and girls’ teams winning the Class A-3A titles in their respective competitions.

The Wildcats’ boys team placed first with 572 points for its 26th state championship. Wesleyan was third at 205.5 points. Westminster won the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:34.30, featuring the group of Miles Clayton, Savaan Shah, Daniel Barra and Cole Hinkes for All-America consideration. Westminster picked up another relay win in the 200 freestyle in 1:24.70 and earned All-America honors with the group of Connor Hinkes, Cole Hinkes, Donovan Mitchell and Grayson Harralson. The Wildcats rounded out their relay wins with a first-place mark in the 400 freestyle with the team of Dylan Vroom, Peter Bernot, Connor Hinkes and Harralson posting a mark of 3:07.95 for All-America consideration.

Atlanta International swimmer Nicholas Goudie earned All-America honors for winning the 50 freestyle in 20.40 seconds and the 100 butterfly in 49.61 for All-America consideration. Pace’s Charlie Kaye won two individual events. The first one was the 100 freestyle in 45.33 for All-America consideration and the 100 backstroke in 49.35 for All-America honors. Spence Pearson of Holy Innocents’ won the one-meter diving title with 559.20 points.

Westminster’s girls team won its 23rd state title with 445 points.

The Wildcats’ 200 freestyle relay unit of Gigi Johnson, Samantha Bertschi, Annie Jardina and Eliza Normark won its race with a time of 1:34.89 to earn All-America honors. The same grouping also won the 400 freestyle relay team in 3:26.85 for additional All-America status.

Johnson earned individual All-America status with her win in the 200 individual medley at 1:59.87 and the 100 breaststroke in 1:03.09 for All-America consideration. Wesleyan’s Hannah Wasmuth won the 100 backstroke in 56.49.

Holy Innocents’ swimmer Abby Pilkerton earned All-America honors by winning two individual events, the 200 freestyle in 1:47.06 and 100 freestyle in 50.14. Elizabeth Kaye of Pace won the one-meter diving competition with 611.45 points.

St. Pius X saw its boys’ team won its third-consecutive Class 4A-5A state title and fourth overall with a score of 364 points.

The Golden Lions’ 400 freestyle relay team of Ian Grum, Henry Halloran, Noah Daniels and Blake Reynolds won its event with a time of 3:10.40. Grum won the 200 freestyle in 1:38.10 and 500 freestyle in 4:26.38 to earn All-America status in both events.

St. Pius X girls’ team placed second in the Class 4A-5A competition with 256 points, only trailing Chamblee’s mark of 262 points.

Golden Lions’ swimmer Riley Hendrix won the 100 backstroke in 55.77 for All-America consideration. Teammate Abby Cohen took home first in the 500 freestyle at 5:01.80.

Riverwood diver Haley Allen won the one-meter competition with 490.40 points followed by Marist’s Lauren Henderson with 475.55 points.

North Atlanta diver Drew Sheldon won the Class 6A boys’ competition with a score of 506.75.

In wrestling, the GHSA traditional state championships saw Woodward complete its team sweep at the statewide level for the 2018-19 campaign with its Class 4A victory. After winning the team duals event in January, the War Eagles the following month finished the traditional competition atop of the standings with 169 points. Its the fifth traditional team title for the War Eagles and the first since 2013. Woodward had six individual finalists and five champions during the competition: Nick Masters (126), Michael Kilic (132), Matthew Singleton (138), McCoy Pace (145) and Malcolm Wiley (195).

Holy Innocents’ finished sixth in the Class A competition. Golden Bears’ grappler Jake Swink brought home the 120-pound individual title.

In the spring, the GHSA golf state championships saw the Westminster’s boys’ team secure its second consecutive 3A state championship and 10th overall. The Wildcats posted an overall team score of 13-under-par, which was the only mark in the red in the entire competition, 45 strokes ahead of second-place Lovett. Westminster’s winning margin is the largest in GHSA history for a two-day state tournament.

William Love won the individual title representing Westminster with a mark of nine-under, followed by teammate Sam Lape at five-under for second overall. Lape was named the 3A Player of the Year for the second consecutive season.

Woodward’s girls’ team won its second consecutive state title and seventh overall in the 4A competition The War Eagles’ team score of 24-over was four strokes better than second-place finisher Columbus. Marist was fifth in the team competition.

St. Pius X boys’ team won the 4A state championship for its first title in program history.

Wesleyan had both of its soccer teams win the GHSA Class A Private state championships. The boys’ team took home the title with a 2-1 victory against Whitefield. It was the second championship in program history for the Wolves and the first since 2016.

The Wolves’ girls’ team also won the state title with a 3-1 victory over Pinecrest. It was Wesleyan’s second championship and first since 2017.

Westminster also saw its soccer programs sweep their respective title matches in 3A. The Wildcats’ boys team capped off its 21-1-1 campaign in 2019 with a 4-0 victory over Coahulla Creek. It was Westminster’s third consecutive title and 14th overall.

The Wildcats’ girls earned its fifth straight title and 13th overall with a 3-1 overtime win over Lovett.

St. Pius X saw its girls team win its 12th state title with a 6-0 victory against Flowery Branch.

Other boys’ soccer teams in the postseason were Atlanta International, Pace, Lovett, St. Pius X, Woodward, Marist, Riverwood and North Springs. Girls’ soccer teams in the state playoffs were Atlanta Classical, Whitefield, Holy Innocents’, Pace, Marist, Woodward, Riverwood and North Springs.

The GHSA A-5A boys’ lacrosse final pitted rivals Westminster and Lovett against each other. The back-and-forth affair concluded with the Wildcats emerging with a 9-8 victory in overtime. It’s Westminster’s sixth state title and second in three years. Other boys’ teams to make the postseason were Wesleyan, St. Pius X, Holy Innocents’, Pace, Woodward, Riverwood, Whitefield and Marist. Girls’ lacrosse teams in the playoffs were Westminster, Wesleyan, Holy Innocents’, Lovett, Marist, Pace,St. Pius X and Woodward.

Both Pace tennis programs won their respective GHSA 3A state championships.

The championship matches were originally scheduled to take place May 4 at the Rome the Knights’ boys’ team hosted Lovett May 6 in the finals. Pace emerged with a 3-2 victory for their ninth team state title and first since 2002. Next up was the girls’ championship match between the same two teams. The Knights earned a 3-2 victory over the Lions for their fourth state title and first since 2001.

Marist’s girls team won the Class AAAA state title with a 3-2 home win over North Oconee. Its the 24th state title for the War Eagles in program history and first since 2014.

Chamblee also pulled the sweep with its tennis teams with state titles in 5A. The Bulldogs’ boys’ team defeated Grady 3-0 for its second state title and first since 1998.

Chamblee’s’ girls’ team won its third consecutive state championship and third overall with a 3-0 victory over Kell.

Other boys’ tennis teams in the postseason were Holy Innocents’, Atlanta International, Wesleyan, Galloway, Westminster, Woodward, St. Pius X, Marist, Riverwood and North Springs. The girls’ tennis teams in the state playoffs were Atlanta International, Wesleyan, Whitefield, Holy Innocents’, Westminster, St. Pius X, North Springs, Riverwood and North Atlanta.

Holy Innocents’, Mount Vernon, Wesleyan, Westminster, Pace, Lovett, Marist, Woodward, St. Pius X, North Springs, Riverwood made the baseball playoffs.

The GHSA held its state track and field championships with Atlanta International’s Joyce winning two Class A Private events starting with the 1,600-meter run in 4:57.90. Joyce’s second victory was in the 800 at 2:12.79. AIS saw its 4x100 relay team of Rachael Sarelius, Tahlia Pemberton, Reagan Mahoney and Joyce win its event in 4:01.11. Jada Farrell of Holy Innocents’ brought home the shot put in a distance of 12.78 meters. Mount Vernon Presbyterian’s Jessicka Woods won the 400 in 57.71 seconds with Nea Sanders of Wesleyan coming in second. She also brought home the 300 hurdles in 43.88 seconds with Sanders placing third.

The Class A Private boys’ competition saw Wesleyan’s Matthew Steinback win the pole vault at 3.96 meters.

Westminster boys’ runner Will Wallace won the 3A 3,200 in 9:29.34. George Adams of Pace won the 800 in 1:56.12.

The Class 3A girls’ competition saw Lovett’s Haley Hooper win the 1,600 in 5:06.27.

The St. Pius X boys’ team won the 4A state championship with 81 points. It was the Golden Lions’ second consecutive state crown and fifth overall. Tanner Duffin won the discus throw for St. Pius X with a distance of 57.02 meters and shot put at 20.38 meters while teammate Matthew Harris earned the long jump crown at 7.18 meters. Harris won the 300 hurdles in 37.39 seconds and finished second in the 110 hurdles for St. Pius X.

Sultan Simms of Woodward won the high jump at 1.98 meters.

The Class 4A girls’ competition saw Maggie Yankovich of St. Pius X win the 1,600 with a time of 5:02.89.

Baseball news

Four local athletes were selected in the Major League Baseball Draft June 3 through 5. Lovett graduate Aaron Schunk, who just completed his junior season starring for the University of Georgia, was picked by the Colorado Rockies in the second round (62nd selection overall).

North Atlanta senior pitcher Marc Church was selected by the Texas Rangers in the 18th round (535th overall). Riverwood graduate Davis Vainer, who just completed his junior year at the University of Alabama, was chosen by the Houston Astros in the 21st round (646th overall).

Mount Vernon Presbyterian senior center fielder Tres Gonzalez was chosen by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 37th round (1,121st overall) and was the final player overall picked in the draft.

Riverwood senior pitcher Brett Thomas was listed as the 93rd best player available in the draft but was not chosen, likely because he signed to play for the University of South Carolina.

In related news, Josh Johnston, a North Atlanta High graduate who recently completed his junior season at Truett McConnell University, was named honorable mention NAIA All-American earlier this month. The first team All-Appalachian Athletic Conference selection hit .422 with nine home runs, 46 RBIs, 59 runs scored and 23 stolen bases.

News Editor Everett Catts contributed to this report.


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