Evans' Christian Kata
competes in the 500-yard freestyle Saturday
in the Panther/Pack Invitational. Kata swam the 500 in 4:50.22, but Evans' boys placed fifth in the meet.
Photo by Chris Thelen
The Lakeside High School swimming and diving teams haven't been blowing opponents out of the water this season, but these Panthers must have nine lives, because they keep winning.
The Lakeside squads did it again last weekend at the Augusta Aquatics Center, where the Panthers and Lady Panthers defended their titles at the Panther/Pack Invitational.
The Panthers and meet co-host Greenbrier High School both were in position to take the title, but Lakeside edged the Pack 333-317.5. Coming into to Saturday's event, the Lakeside boys had posted a 6-0 meet record, and several of those wins came down to the wire.
The Lakeside girls, meanwhile, also brought a 6-0 mark into the Panther/Pack. The Lady Panthers pulled off a thrilling comeback Saturday to beat Camden County 396-384.
"Overall we did well," Lakeside coach Bryan Wells said. "The girls stepped up and the relays did well."
The Evans High School teams both finished fifth at the Panther/Pack, and the Lady Wolfpack placed 11th. There were 18 teams competing in both the girls and boys divisions.
Columbia County's swim teams cap their regular season this week. On Thursday, the squads square off in the CSRA Championships, then hit the water again Saturday with a tri-match at Augusta Aquatics Center.
Those two meets will provide athletes with their final opportunities to qualify for the state championships, which will be held Feb. 12-15 in Atlanta at Westminster School.
Swimmers and divers earn berths to state by meeting Georgia High School Association standards during regular-season events.
Lakeside's Lorin Harter secured her spot at state with a solid performance at the Panther/Pack. Harter posted a score of 303.75 in the 1-meter diving event to become the first Lady Panther in four years to qualify for the state diving championships.
Boys: Lakeside 333; Greenbrier 317.50; McIntosh 315.50; Camden County 264; Evans 200; Benedictine 184; Baldwin 170; Statesboro 92.50; Westside 62; Glynn Academy 56; Savannah Country Day 37; Our Lady of Mercy 32; Herschel V. Jenkins 17.50; Vidalia 11; Groves 9; Appalachee 5; Savannah Arts Academy 3; Windsor Forest 2.
Girls: Lakeside 396; Camden County 384; St. Vincents Academy 249; McIntosh 187; Evans 178; Baldwin 124; Statesboro 119; Herschel V. Jenkins 104; Savannah Arts Academy 98; Westside 91; Greenbrier 83; Savannah Country Day 67; Our Lady of Mercy 45; Gordon Central 37; Brunswick 32; Appalachee 21; Pace Academy 16; Winder-Barrow 11.
Columbia County event winners
Boys: 200 Medley Relay - Greenbrier (1:52.00); 200 Individual Medley - Christian Kata, Evans (2:00.78); 100 Butterfly - Richard Splichal, Evans (:55.60); 100 Freestyle - Tim Murray, Greenbrier (:51.42); 500 Freestyle - Kata, Evans (4:50.22); 200 Freestyle Relay - Lakeside (1:36.28); 100 Backstroke - Murray, Greenbrier (:56.89); 400 Freestyle Relay - Lakeside (4:15.36).
Girls: 400 Freestyle Relay - Lakeside (4:15.36).
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