CF, NMB, Socastee swim their way to region titles

The Carolina Forest and North Myrtle Beach girls and Socastee boys swam to region championships on Saturday at the Coastal Carolina Aquatic Center.

The Lady Panthers used individual victories by Bri Strang in the 200 freestyle (2:01.39) and 500 freestyle (5:26.31), Ann Fallaw in the 100 breaststroke (1:19.93) and Lexi Salice in the 50 freestyle (26.82). They also won the 200 medley relay (2:02.96), 200 freestyle relay (1:47.77) and 400 freestyle relay (4:08.35) to claim the Region VI-AAAA title with 172 points, edging runner-up Sumter (144).

The North Myrtle Beach girls (138 points) used a dominating performance to beat Socastee (79), St. James (73), Wilson (67) and Myrtle Beach (49) for the Region VII-AAA crown. April Ratley won the 100 freestyle (59.76) and Barbara Long won the 500 freestyle (5:43.84) to lead the Lady Chiefs.

Other local girls winners include Myrtle Beach’s Maggie Langdale in the 200 freestyle (2:01.85) and 100 backstroke (1:02.69) and Julia Campbell in the 100 butterfly (1:04.73); St. James’ Ana Wolff in the 50 freestyle (27.03) and 200 freestyle relay; and Socastee’s Anastasia Liakos in the 100 butterfly (1:15.24) and 200 individual medley (2:20.33). The Lady Braves also won the 200 medley relay (2:04.73) and 400 freestyle relay (4:09.39).

The Socastee boys (169 points) also rolled to the Region VII-AAA title over North Myrtle Beach (81), St. James (73), Wilson (67) and Myrtle Beach (49). The Carolina Forest boys (89) finished third behind Region VI-AAAA champion West Florence (146) and Sumter (136).

Socastee’s Eddie Bateson won the 200 freestyle (1:58.82) and 500 freestyle (5:08.64); Walker Harwell claimed the 100 freestytle (51.19) and 100 breaststroke (1:01.58); and Michael Grabara took the 50 freestyle (24.09) to lead the Braves, who also won the 200 medley relay (1:47.25), 200 freestyle relay (1:35.17) and 400 freestyle relay (3:36.59).

Other local boys winners include St. James’ Adam Stenger in the 200 individual medley (2:06.53); and North Myrtle Beach’s Mason Bryan in the 100 backstroke (57.31) as the top four finishers in each event advance to next week’s state championships in Columbia.

– Photo by Rancier Photography

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