Chris Carter of Corinth Holders swims the 200-yard medley relay during a Northern Carolina 2A Conference meet at Riverwood Athletic Club.
Corinth Holders continued its solid season in the pool, winning another Northern Carolina 2A Conference meet earlier this month. The Pirates’ boys and girls teams both won on in their home pool at the Riverwood Athletic Club.
Both Pirate squads won seven of the eight individual races and two of the three relay events, giving both teams a big goal to shoot at in Friday’s conference championship meet in Roanoke Rapids. Corinth Holders’ boys team finished the meet with 173 points, while the girls totaled 165 points.
“My goal for the conference championship is to win every race in both the men’s and women’s divisions,” said Corinth Holders coach Maureen Blandford. “It will be tougher for the women as we have a smaller group of key swimmers than the men's team. I like to set goals for the swimmers so that they are challenged.”
The Pirates will also be looking to add more regional qualifiers during the meet. Swimmers must meet time standards in each event to qualify for regionals, which determine state championship qualifiers.
In the Jan. 11 meet at Riverwood, Corinth Holders’ boys team won the 200-yard medley relay in 1:51.61. Connor Blandford, Chris Carter, Nolan Hopkins and Cody Beamer made up the winning quartet. The Pirates won the 400 free relay (3:42.09) with Beamer, Hopkins, Blandford and Neal Quinn.
Three Corinth Holders swimmers won two individual races: Hopkins in the 200 free (1:59.15) and 100 butterfly (58.93), Blandford in the individual medley (2:07.06) and the breaststroke (1:07.94) and Eric Svadeba in the 500 (5:39.24) and the backstroke (1:05.19).
“We had some personal best swims and nice surprises in Cody Beamer's 50 free, Nolan Hopkins 100 fly and Eric Svadeba's 100 back,” Blandford said. “They did a great job pushing themselves & finishing strong. Sophomore Neal Quinn had two personal bests that were faster than his times from the state meet last year, so he should have a great end to his season. Bailey Blackwell also has been a great asset to our relays.”
Beamer accounted for the seventh Pirate individual victory, leading the field in the 50 freestyle in 24.57 seconds.
Carter finished second in the 200 individual medley and the 200 free, while Brach Gordon had a runner-up finish for Corinth Holders in the breaststroke. Quinn was second in the butterfly and backstroke.
The Pirates’ 200 free relay team of Gordon, Bailey Blackwell, Dalton Beamer and Bryce Sherrill picked up runner-up honors.
Lauren Bunting, Michaela Carter and Amanda Knickerbocker both won two individual relay races for the Corinth Holders’ girls squad. The pair also swam on the winning 200 medley relay.
The Pirates won the 200 medley relay in 2:12.27 with Brenna Ziermann, Michaela Carter, Bunting and Knickerbocker. Corinth Holders also won the 400 free relay (4:19.6) with Bunting, Stephanie Grandin, Alyssa Stevens, Michaela Carter and Bunting.
Bunting’s individual wins came in the 200 free (2:21.69) and the butterfly (1:15.97). Knickerbocker won the individual medley (2:41.57) and the 100 backstroke (1:13.89), while Carter took the 50 free and the 100 free in 25.6 and 57.02 seconds, respectively.
Stephanie Grandin accounted for the Pirates’ other individual win in the breaststroke in 1:16.7.
“I was looking for our relays to be more aggressive on their starts and swims and they did a good job with both,” Blandford said. “I would have to say that freshmen Lauren Bunting impressed me out of all the swims as she dropped a significant amount of time in her fly and another second in the 200 free.”
The Pirates were second in the 200 free relay with Alyssa Rackley, Stevens, Knickerbocker and Grandin, while Brenna Ziermann was second in the individual medley and Grandin took second in the 100 free. Other runner-up finishes went to Gabbie Carter in the 500 and Taylor Stevens in the 100 backstroke.
Alyssa Stevens also took third in the 500.