Local Swimmers Excel At Georgia, Tennessee State Meets

McCallie/GPS Aquatics Sixth Of 50 Teams At Southeastern Championships

Monday, July 21, 2014 - by Specal To The Chattanoogan.com

Several Chattanooga-area swimmers had successful weekends in various meets this past weekend.

The McCallie/GPS Aquatics team finished sixth out of 50 teams at the Southeastern Swimming Championship in Knoxville while swimmers from Fort Oglethorpe and Ringgold also had memorable performances at the Georgia State Meet, also held last weekend.

The McCallie/GPS team recorded seven first-place finishes with 10-year-old Ellie Taliaferro and 12-year-old Grayson Payne shining the brightest.

Taliaferro had winning efforts in the 50 free and 50 back events while finishing second in the 50 back, 100 fly, 100 back and 100 free and third in the 50 back.  She also broke four team records, including the 50 free, 50 fly, 100 free and 100 fly as she was the second-place 10-under girl for the entire meet.

Payne won the 50 back with the top time in the country for 12-year-old girls.  She was also one of four swimmers selected to the Southeastern Zone Team for a meet in San Antonio from July 28-Aug. 3.  The other three included Jake Marcum, Luke Massey and Susanna LaRochelle.

Other winning efforts for Chattanooga's highest-finishing team included Markum in the boys 13-14 200 back and Rachel Dover in the senior girls 100 fly. 

The foursome of Peter Dyr, Gabriel Johnson, Ethan Bevill and Markum won the 13-14 boys 400 free relay while Markum, Dyr, Massey and Gabriel Johnson were winners in the 13-14 boys medley relay.

While Taliaferro established four new team records, Payne had five, including the 50 back, 200 individual medley, 100 back, 100 free and 400 free.

Marcum broke records in the 13-14 boys 100 back and 200 back while April Forsthoffer set a new standard in the senior girls 100 back.  Dover broke the record for senior girls in the 100 fly while LaRochelle dd the same for senior girls in the 200 back.

Other McCallie/GPS team members who had memorable performances included Emma Kate White, Abi Austin, Sam Powe, Aidan Shaw, Jacob McDaniel, Reese Gallagher, Kristen Myers and Jon Pat Ransom.

Ringgold teammates Will Gurley and Pierce Lively were both winners among the 15-18 boys with Gurley winning the 50 fly and Lively first in the 100 IM.  Gurley also claimed second in the 50 free while Lively was second in the 50 breast

The team of Nick Van Alstine, Nathan Watson, Lively and Gurley also won the 200 medley relay for 15-18 boys while taking third in the 200 free relay

Fort Oglethorpe's Bella Lee was second in the 8-under girls 25 breast and third in the 100 IM while teammate Ryan Berry was second in the 9-10 boys 25 fly.

Kyle Berry was another standout for Fort Oglethorpe as he claimed second in the boys 11-12 50 fly and also the runner-up medal in the 100 IM.  He combined with Lance Marshall, Joshua Carney and Ian Goodwin to take second in the 200 free relay for boys 11-12. This same quartet finished second in the 200 medley relay.

Other standouts for Ringgold included Tori Rhinehart (third in the girls 9-10 50 free), Easton Odonnell (third in the boys 11-12 50 breast) and Lindsey Hudson (third place in the 13-14 girls 50 breast).

Ringgold's Chipper Grayson, Cayman Hughey, Kale Davis and John Courtney also combined to finish third in the boys 9-10 200 free relay.

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@Comcast.net)

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