The FHSAA State Championship meets have come and gone. Here, we take a look at the top finishers of each 2A girls event.
200 Medley Relay
The first event of the division 2A states, the girls 200 medley relay, was swiped by Gulliver Prep with a lead of over three seconds. The girls are the defending champions from last year’s state meet as well. Coming in three seconds behind was Fort Walton Beach with a time of 1:48.46 compared to Gullivers 1:46.03. The team consisted of Kayla Kraft, Olivia Hernandez, Emily Cordovi, and Cassandra Kraft, who all put up amazing times.
FSN’s very own Ryley Ober, a senior from Bayshore took the 200 free by almost two seconds with an AA-C time of 1:48.93. Ober is the defending champion of this event, winning it by almost three seconds the previous year. Coming in second place is Hannah Sykes with an impressive time of 1:50.72 from Wolfson.
The 200 IM proved to be a much closer race than the previous two. Coming in first was Nicole Rodriguez, a sophomore from Cape Coral, with a time of 2:06.43. However, not too far behind were Cali Wilson ,with a time of 2:07.05, and Naomi Filkin, with a time of 2:07.86. Despite this being a close race, Sara Stoler was a favorite to win the event by a large margin however she was unfortunately DQ’ed during prelims. Nevertheless, congrats to Filkin for claiming the gold.
As typical for this event, it came down to only .07 between second and first. Coming out ahead however, was Chloe Hernandez, a sophomore from Gulliver Prep, with a time of 23.90. In second was Sarah Evans with a time of 23.97 from Port St. Lucie. Both girls were the only ones to go under 24.00 which is a large accomplishment in itself.
The top three finishers in this year state diving competition came out of nowhere as none of them even competed in last years states. In first place was sophomore Blair Isenhour with 375.05 points. In a fairly close second is freshman Christina Hilton with 371.60 points. From third place on there are fairly large margins between each of the divers.
Despite a disqualification in the 200 IM, sophomore Stoler of Clay, made a comeback in the 100 fly by winning by only .20 seconds. Stoler finished with a time of 54.82, the only girl to break 55.00 at the 2A State Meet. Coming in second was the defending champion from Gulliver Prep Cordovi with a time of 55.02.
Once again, Ober comes in first by a considerable margin for the 100 freestyle of 1.36 seconds. Ober is the only girl to go under 52.00 and almost breaks 51.00 as she comes in with a time of 51.00. The second and third place finishers had a bit more of a race coming in only .61 seconds behind the other. Romina McCloskey and the 50 free champ Hernandez won the remaining medals respectively.
Arguably the most grueling event in the meet, was won by a large margin of over seven seconds by Taylor War, a senior from Land O’ Lakes. Despite a seven second margin is not unusual for this long of an event, it is still impressive, especially considering War was the only girl to break 5:00.00 with a time of 4:57.21. The second place winner made an impressive finish, cutting her time by just over six seconds and finishing with a 5:04.64.
200 Freestyle Relay
Once again, coming in first, are the defending champions from Gulliver Prep. They won by a considerable amount of nearly two seconds and a time of 1:37.56. Sarah Abril finished strong with the relays fastest time of 24.06. Coming in second was Suncoast who had a close race with the Land O’ Lakes girls coming in only .27 seconds ahead.
The defending champion a senior from Gulliver Prep, Cordovi finished with a 56.59 adding .10 from her prelim time. Coming in a close second was junior Filkin with a time of 56.89. Filkin competed in the same event last year and came in third, improving not only her position but also her time from last year.
In the 100 breast, first, second, and third were all claimed by girls who did not even finish in the top ten last year. First place winner, senior Wilson, finished ahead of second place winner Hernandez by over a second. Despite coming in with a very impressive time of 1:04.15, Cali was only .10 seconds away from an AA-C time.
400 Freestyle Relay
The last event of the night turned out to be an exciting one. Gulliver Prep finished the event with one last win with Suncoast grabbing second from their seated fourth place. However, when it came time for awards, the whole girls 400 free relay was not called up after the boys 100 breast, instead the boys relay was called up first. Once those medals had been given out the girls relay was finally called. Surprisingly, Suncoast was announced as the first place winner with Gulf Breeze in second and no mention of Gulliver Prep. Somehow, one of the Gulliver girls on the relay had been entered in five events instead of the permitted four. Due to this, their relay was unfortunately disqualified and Suncoast claimed first with a time of 3:36.09.
Overall Team Scores
Despite their surprising finish in the 400 freestyle, Gulliver Prep still managed to defend their title coming in 244 points, 79 points ahead of the second place finisher of Holy Names. Both teams held on to the positions they claimed at last years states although the 2017 third place finisher came in a shocking 24th place with Gulf Breeze replacing them in third. Nevertheless, congratulations to every girl who competed at this years Division 2A State Championship.
Congratulations to all FHSAA swimmers on the completion of another stellar season.
By Cathleen Rabideau