Last week's regular-season swim meet at the Augusta Aquatics Center pitted in-county rivals Lakeside High School and Evans High School against each other.
In the end, quantity won over quality.
In the 23-event competition, Evans took first place 14 times. However, Lakeside, who took the top spot in nine events, won the competition by a wide margin, with the boy's team finishing 137 points ahead of Evans and the Lady Panthers topping the Lady Knights by 141 points.
The win came from a Lakeside roster almost twice as large as the Evans squad.
"In a dual situation like this where it's 30 against 50, it's hard," Evans coach Lane Schuckers said. "We pretty much hit our goals tonight."
Included in those goals were the performances of two Lady Knights. Juniors C.J. Hendry and Nicole Moody took first place in two events each, then teamed up with two other Lady Knights to earn two more top spots in the 400-yard freestyle relay and the 200-yard medley relay.
Schuckers said getting his swimmers excited about the event wasn't even an issue.
"They don't need any incentive to get up for Lakeside," he said. "They were ready."
The Panthers also were ready for their Columbia County rivals. However, Lakeside coaches Kristy Shuster and Sonja Bowling said the win didn't come from simply having more swimmers.
"It's not the numbers, it's our depth," Bowling said. "We have so many good swimmers."
One of those swimmers, sophomore Drew Davison, qualified for state competition Thursday for the first time this season in the 50-yard freestyle.
Davison took first place in both the 50- and 100-yard freestyle events. His time of 23.29 seconds in the 50-yard freestyle was 0.21 seconds better than the state qualifier's time and earned him a trip to the state competition at the end of the season.
"He knew what he had to do," Bowling said. "He had a lot of energy tonight."
The Lakeside win marks the fifth of the season for the Panthers and the fourth for the Lady Panthers.
Lakeside and Evans joined high school squads from throughout the state Saturday at the UGA Invitational in Athens. Both Lakeside and Evans will return home for the CSRA Championships at the Augusta Aquatics Center on Jan. 26.
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