Hayes girls, Liberty boys shine at state meet


Members of the Delaware Hayes girls swimming and diving team saved their best for last, posting some of the top times and finishes in program history — and doing it on the state’s biggest stage — at last weekend’s OHSAA State Swimming and Diving Championships in Canton.

Kaitlyn Sallows, just a sophomore, led the charge, finishing second in the state in the 500 freestyle and fourth in the 200 IM.

Her time of 4:54.09 in the 500 — second only to Dublin Coffman’s Emily Brown — helped her secure the highest finish ever by a Pacer in the event. As if that wasn’t enough for the sophomore to hang her swim cap on, her time of 2:02.85 in the 200 IM was good enough to set a new school record in the event, breaking her previous mark of 2:03. The fourth-place finish was also the best ever by any Pacer in the 200 IM.

The finishes also improved upon last year’s efforts, when she finished sixth in the 200 IM and eighth in the 500 free.

She was part of Hayes’ 200 medley relay team, too, joining forces with Mackenzie Carter, Kara Glesenkamp and Natalie Fiant to close eighth in the state in 1:46.83.

Other Hayes standouts included Ashley Sallows, who closed 14th in the 500 free (5:06.82); and Carter, who finished ninth in the 50 free (24.15 seconds).

Other area standouts included Olentangy Liberty’s Morgan Hofmeister, who finished seventh in the 500 free (5:04.37) and 16th in the 200 free (1:54.39); Olentangy Orange’s Mia Boccio, who was 12th in the 50 free (24.22 seconds); and Olentangy Berlin’s Audrey Butcher, who finished 16th in the 100 butterfly (58.42 seconds).

Orange junior Augusta Ness was in action earlier in the week, closing 10th in the 1-meter diving event with a score of 390.15 in the finals.

On the boys’ side, Liberty and senior Hudson Williams made the most noise.

Williams was the fastest swimmer in the pool all weekend, winning state championships in the 50 free and 100 free. He closed in 19.55 seconds in the shorter race — a mark nearly half a second better than his seed time and almost a full second better than runner-up Joshua Toothman, a junior from St. Ignatius, posted. He won the 100, meanwhile, by nearly two seconds.

The 200 medley relay team of Williams, Mason Miller, Michael Gaier and Aiden Gaier finished third in Division I (1:31.37) while the same four combined to finish third in the 200 freestyle relay (1:23.26), too.

In the 400 freestyle relay, Michael Gaier, Campbell Williams, Miller and Noah Rumburg finished tied for 11th in 3:11.28.

Individually, Aiden Gaier finished 11th in the 100 free (46.49 seconds) and 13th in the 50 free (21.33 seconds) while teammate John Franz was 13th in the 500 free (4:41.80).

Others who competed in finals included Orange’s Tucker Lambert, who nabbed All-Ohio honors by finishing fourth in the 100 free (45.22 seconds) and fifth in the 50 free (20.77 seconds); the Pioneers’ Brady Farren, who finished 10th in he 200 IM (1:53.77); Berlin’s Ben Coverdale, who was 14th in the 50 free (21.34 seconds); and Big Walnut’s John Wion, who finished 10th in the 100 backstroke with a personal-best mark of 51.18 seconds.

Finally, Orange’s 400 freestyle relay team of Lambert, Caiden Dunn, Jamal Deek and Farren finished 14th in 3:12.53.

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