Lakeside's swimming dynasty carried over into another season last week when both the boys and girls squads claimed the CSRA Championships at the Augusta Aquatics Center.
Though the final standings showed the same team at the top for the third-straight year, it was a swim meet unlike any other for a record number of swimmers.
The biggest senior swim class in recent memory was honored midway through the meet. As the final home meet of the year, it was the last time many local swimmers would compete in a high school meet at the center.
"This has been my home my whole life. It'll be sad to leave," Evans senior Josh Andrews said. "This pool's been good to me."
Andrews took first place in the boys 200-yard individual medley and the boys 500-yard freestyle events. Fellow Evans seniors C.J. Hendry, Nicole Moody and Martin Kata claimed two first-place finishes each. The four seniors, who will swim in the college ranks next season, have been virtually unbeatable in the 2006-07 season.
Evans swim coach Lane Shuckers compared them to the 2001 and 2002 Knight swim teams that claimed back-to-back CSRA Championships, but he stopped short of deciding which team was better.
"That's yet to be seen," he said. "The difference will come out on the 9th and 10th of February."
The Georgia State Champ-ionships, held the second weekend in February, will take place at Westminster in Atlanta. By beating a designated state qualifying time in at least one event, 15 Evans swimmers have qualified for state competition. Lakeside will take 17 state qualifiers to the competition because Christopher Plummer, Lauren Bowling, Eric Chiu, Evan Mulloy, Charles Johnson and Christina Rowland turned in first-place performances Thursday.
For Greenbrier, junior Tony Trakowski entered Thursday's CSRA Championships still on the outside of a trip to state competition by three-tenths of a second. Needing a time of 2 minutes, 12 seconds in the 200-yard individual medley, Trakowski finished with a time of 2:11.21 and punched his own ticket to the state championships.
"I've been trying to make it the whole year. Before the Christmas break I missed it by 0.3 seconds," he said.
Trakowski's sixth-place finish in the event made him one of more than 30 Columbia County athletes who will compete at the Georgia State Championships.
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