Oakton High School
Girls Varsity Swim & Dive
After a week break, the Oakton Cougars kicked off 2020 at Oak Marr Rec Center against the Thomas Jefferson Colonials. With all but one returning boy from its third-place team at last year’s class 4 state championship, TJ presented Oakton with its biggest challenge of the season to date. Oakton, led by divers Josh Shipley (first), Spencer Dearman (second), Nico Shuster (fourth), and Wes Kron (fifth), outscored TJ 21 to 8 in diving to provide the margin of victory as the Oakton boys moved to 5-0 on the season with an 8-point win, 161.5 to 153.5. The girls continued to roll with a 225 to 89 victory.
The girl’s meet was much less dramatic with the Cougars dominating from the start and winning 10 of 12 events. The Cougars ran up a 36 point lead with first and second finishes in all 3 relays. Senior captain Leaya Ma earned her first state cut of the season with a 24.46 in 50 freestyle. Angela Cai, a sophomore continued the impressive start to her season with a one-second improvement from last year’s Districts in 200 IM. Freshman GG Campo turned in a lifetime best in 50 freestyle placing fourth, while junior Lizzie Williams picked up her first career victory as a Cougar in 100 backstroke. The most impressive swims of the night were turned in by freshman Rachael Kim who placed fourth in both 200 and 500 freestyle with a 5-second and 7-second personal bests, respectively.
With only two individual wins—Josh Shipley (diving) and Graham Evers (100 freestyle)—the boys victory was truly a team effort with clutch swims earning valuable points throughout the night. Chase Koller kicked off the meet dropping 2.5 seconds in 200 freestyle to place second, while Liam Tolbert took off over four seconds to place sixth, picking up two points that would make a difference. Wes Kron, who both swam and dove, dropped over half a second in 50 free to place sixth. Similarly Cameron Dearman turned in a best time in 100 fly to finish sixth. In the most exciting race of the night, Ian Ching held off a furious charge by TJ to anchor the 200 freestyle relay to victory by 0.13 seconds. With the meet in the balance, Oakton leaned on its captains Kyle McCleskey and Joe Wong in the final two individual events of the night—100 backstroke and 100 breaststroke—and outscored TJ by 12 points, narrowing the gap to allow the divers to make up the difference and seal the victory.
Next week, the Cougars will celebrate the class of 2020 with senior night against Centreville at Oak Marr Rec Center starting at 6:00pm.