Dearth of divers costs East Chapel Hill in state 4-A swimming championships
Koya Osada churns out 7,000 meters in the pool on any given practice day. Thursday night, the East Chapel Hill swimmer only had to slice through 200 yards of water to claim All-American status.
Osada led the Wildcats to a fourth place finish out of 43 teams in the boys’ state 4-A swimming and diving championships at the Triangle Aquatic Center, finishing second in both the 200-yard individual medley and 100-yard backstroke. The East Chapel Hill girls finished 12th of 34 teams.
Aaron Daniels-Freeman of Riverside captured a state title in the 1-meter diving competition at Raleigh’s Pullen Aquatic Center with a score of 435.95.
“We came up just short of being runner-ups and it hurts a lot more than I thought it
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would. But I was happy with our team performance,” Osada said. “I was pretty happy with my 200 individual medley. I got a best time, so I wasn’t really expecting that.”
His 1:51.19 time in the 200 qualified him as an automatic All-American with one of the top 100 finishes in the nation in that event. His time of 50.53 in the 100 back earned All-American consideration. He also was on the 200-yard medley relay team that took fourth, and the 400-yard freestyle relay team that finished fifth.
“I just wanted to represent my school as well as I could and get some wins,” Osada said. “I couldn’t do that this year, and I’m disappointed about that. I’m a junior so I have one more year.”
Other Wildcats earning all-state honors were senior Max Howes in the 100-yard freestyle (sixth) and 200-yard freestyle (fifth) and James Brady in 1-meter diving with a score of 406.60 and a fourth-place finish. On the girls side, sophomore Morgan Smith finished fifth in the 200-yard freestyle and sixth in the 100-yard freestyle to earn all-state honors in those events.
“This is where you get to the biggest level there is in states. There are records broken left and right, you’re talking the best swimmers in the state in this meet,” East Chapel Hill coach Lyn Smith said. “And we had several kids make it back to the championship finals, which is awesome, and we had some make it back in the consolation finals.”
“Diving put us behind” in the team title chase, Smith said. “On the girls side we went down 68 points because of diving to start the meet. That hurts. We didn’t have any divers (qualify for states). It’s been a rough year on divers.”
Brady “was very good on the men’s side,” Smith said, but was the only diver from the team who qualified for states.
“We brought a big number to states this year. We brought 28 kids, which is great,” she said. “I think the kids really did well. They stepped up.
“I love this team,” Smith said. “They all support each other. I have kids who came today who didn’t make the regional or state team. They came to every meet, every session, they’re on the deck cheering for each other and that’s what it’s all about.”
“Our coach is amazing. She works day in, day out, writes charts, she calculates everything,” Osada said. “She really just wants to put our team in the position to win. Her staff is amazing as well.”
NCHSAA 4-A GIRLS’ FINALS
(Champions plus local top 8 finishers)
200 medley relay—1. Green Hope 1:47.56. 200 freestyle—1. Jessica Merritt (Hough) 1:48.84; 5. Morgan Smith (East Chapel Hill) 1:53.48. 200 individual medley—1. Alexandra Martelle (South Mecklenburg) 2:03.32. 50 free—1. Emily Allen (Hough) 23.02. 100 butterfly—1. Megan Owens (Cary) 55.59. 100 free—1. Emily Allen (Hough) 49.77; 6. Morgan Smith (ECH) 52.86. 1-meter diving—1. Lily Armstrong (Western Guilford) 386.95. 500 free—1. Hannah Moore (Green Hope) 4:47.66. 200 free relay—1. Hough 1:35.04. 100 backstroke—1. Hannah Moore (Green Hope) 54.37. 100 breaststroke—1. Alexandra Martelle (S. Mecklenburg) 1:03.21. 400 free relay—1. Hough 3:24.83.
Final team standings (top 3 plus local teams) — 1. Cornelius W.A. Hough 323; 2. Cary Green Hope 236; 3. Cary Panther Creek 182; 12. East Chapel Hill 64.5.
NCHSAA 4-A BOYS’ FINALS
(Champions plus local top 8 finishers)
200 medley relay—1. Cary Green Hope 1:34.99; 4. East Chapel Hill (Koya Osada, Liam McCullough, Oliver Hudgins, Matthew Creatore). 200 freestyle—1. John Manchester (Hough) 1:39.85; 4. Connor Williams (Northern) 1:43.36; 5. Max Howes (ECH) 1:43.86. 200 individual medley—1. Colin Ellington (Holly Springs) 1:49.29; 2. Koya Osada (ECH) 1:51.19. 50 free—1. Kyle Darmody (Providence) 20.54. 100 butterfly—1. Christian Caveness (Laney) 50.02. 100 free—1. Colin Ellington (Holly Springs) 44.87; 6. Max Howes (ECH) 48.20. 1-meter diving—1. Aaron Daniels-Freeman (Riverside) 435.95; 4. James Brady (ECH) 406.60. 500 free—1. Jamison Hauser (Panther Creek) 4:34.53; 4. Connor Williams (Northern) 4:40.74. 200 free relay—1. Green Hope 1:26.16; 7. East Chapel Hill (Max Howes, Thomas Guest, Michael Wohl, Matthew Creatore) 1:28.92. 100 backstroke—1. John Manchester (Hough) 49.39; 2. Koya Osada (ECH) 50.53. 100 breaststroke—1. Daniel Le (NW Guilford) 55.14; 6. Conor Hoffman (N) 1:00.06. 400 free relay—1. Rose 3:09.19; 5. East Chapel Hill (Michael Wohl, Oliver Hudgins, Max Howes, Koya Osada) 3:12.94.
Final team standings (top 3 plus local teams) — 1. Cary Green Hope 259; 2. Cornelius W.A. Hough 190; 3. Charlotte South Mecklenburg 175; 4. East Chapel Hill 168; 15. Northern 46; 27. Riverside 20; 40. Jordan 2.
HIGH SCHOOL SWIMMING
NCHSAA 4-A CHAMPIONSHIPS
200 medley relay—East Chapel Hill, Riverside. 200 free—Celia Marzinsky (ECH), Sophie McNeill (Riverside), Morgan Smith (ECH). 200 IM—Mariel Gampe (Jordan), Annabelle Kayye (ECH), Keira McCullough (ECH), Corriene Sept (ECH). 100 free—Morgan Smith (ECH), Chelsea Yu (ECH). 500 free—McNeill (Riverside). 200 free relay—East Chapel Hill. 100 backstroke—Caroline Liu (ECH), Jennifer Xu (ECH). 100 breaststroke—C. Liu (ECH), K. McCullough (ECH). 400 free relay—East Chapel Hill.
200 medley relay—East Chapel Hill. 200 free—Max Howes (ECH), Connor Williams (Northern), Michael Wohl (ECH). 200 IM—Conor Hoffman (Northern), Koya Osada (ECH). 50 free—Matthew Creatore (ECH), Thomas Guest (ECH). 100 free—Howes (ECH), Wohl (ECH). 500 free—Rob Schaefer (Jordan), Connor Williams (Northern). 200 free relay—East Chapel Hill, Jordan, Riverside. 100 backstroke—K. Osada (ECH), Shuya Osada (ECH), Stephen Young (Jordan). 100 breastroke—Conor Hoffman (Northern), Liam McCullough (ECH). 400 free relay—East Chapel Hill.
NCHSAA 3-A CHAMPIONSHIPS
200 medley relay—Chapel Hill, Orange. 200 free—Anna Baynes (CH), Rachael Samuelson (CH), Melissa Turner (CH). 200 IM—Claire DeSelm (CH), Kaitlan Hollowell (CH), Sophie Pudik (CH). 50 free—Kaitlin Jones (CH), Paige Jones (CH), Heidi Mickunas (CH), Michaela Nolte (O). 100 butterfly—DeSelm (CH), Samuelson (CH), Turner (CH). 100 free—Paige Jones (CH), Jennifer Lyu (CH), Mickunas (CH), Nolte (O). 500 free—Baynes (CH), Pudik (CH), Sara Taekman (CH), Natalie Thomas (CH). 200 free relay—Chapel Hill, Orange. 100 backstroke—Anabelle Durham (CH), Hollowell (CH), J. Lyu (CH), Thomas (CH). 100 breaststroke—K. Jones (CH), Mara Klem O’Connor (CH). 400 free relay—Chapel Hill.
200 medley relay—Chapel Hill. 200 free—David Batson (CH), Harrison Esterly (CH), Casey Mickunas (CH), Josh Taekman (CH). 200 IM—Sam Freedberg (CH), Emery Harwell (CH), Eli Rose (CH). 50 free—Christopher Eron (CH), Jake Pudik (CH). 1-meter diving—James Willingham (CH). 100 butterfly—Freedberg (CH), Harwell (CH), Patrick O’Donnell (CH), Alex Werden (CH). 100 free—Eron (CH), Pudik (CH). 500 free—Esterley (CH), Evan Rose (CH), Taekman (CH), Werden (CH). 200 free relay—Chapel Hill. 100 backstroke—David Batson (CH), Eli Rose (CH). 100 breaststroke—O’Donnell (CH), Evan Rose (CH). 400 free relay—Chapel Hill.
NCHSAA 1-A/2-A CHAMPIONSHIPS
200 medley relay—Carrboro, Cedar Ridge, Durham School of the Arts, N.C. Science & Math. 200 free—Gabbie Black (NCSSM), Claire Peterman (C). 200 IM—Leah Abrams (C), Darria Chance (NCSSM), Emily McDaniels (C), Christy Powell (NCSSM), Sara Siemens (CR). 50 free—Carson Jones (Northwood), Katie Spang (C), Julia Yu (NCSSM). 1-meter diving—Devin Finney (NCSSM), Bailey Revels (N). 100 butterfly—Abrams (C), Mia Morrell (C), Rory O’Dell (N), Siemens (CR). 100 free—Becca Churchill (CR), Misha Neal (DSA), Spang (C), Jin Zhang (NCSSM). 500 free—E. McDaniels (C), O’Dell (N). 200 free relay—Carrboro, Cedar Ridge, DSA, NCSSM, Northwood. 100 backstroke—Katie Cater (NCSSM), M. Morrell (C). 100 breaststroke—Churchill (CR), Samantha Conger (N), Carson Jones (N), Peterman (C). 400 free relay—Carrboro, DSA, NCSSM, Northwood.
200 medley relay—Carrboro, Cedar Ridge, Durham School of the Arts, N.C. Science & Math. 200 free—Jack Allen (NCSSM), Justin Laatz (C), Will MacMillan (C), Jacob Vosburgh (NCSSM). 200 IM—Colin Bunner (CR, Matt Jacobs (DSA), Kyle Riker (NCSSM), Tanner Roach (C), Gabe Shepherd (NCSSM), Sam Strosnider (C). 50 free—Josh Ewy (NCSSM), Justin Morrell (C), Lucas Orlowski (CR), Kevin Parham (NCSSM), Matt Weaver (NCSSM). 1-meter diving—Stratton Barth (NCSSM), Alex Buck (DSA), Zack Polizzi (NCSSM). Thomas Bilden (C), Bunner (CR), Allan Jiang (NCSSM), Riker (NCSSM), Roach (C), Anshul Subramanya (NCSSM). 100 free—Jake Barnes (C), Daniel Birmingham (NCSSM), Morrell (C), Philip Straughn (N), Strosnider (C), Weaver (NCSSM). 500 free—Bilden (C), Joshua Conger (N), Logan Kirkland (NCSSM), Laatz (C), Vosburgh (NCSSM). 200 free relay—Carrboro, Cedar Ridge, NCSSM. 100 backstroke—Allen (NCSSM), Bilden (C), MacMillan (V), Myles Miller (C), Shepherd (NCSSM), Straughn (N), Subramanya (NCSSM). 100 breaststroke—Birmingham (NCSSM), Joshua Conger (N), Simon Deshusses (C), Jacobs (DSA), Kirkland (NCSSM), Irwin Li (NCSSM), Aidan Marshall (C). 400 free relay—Carrboro, Cedar Ridge, NCSSM.
* Qualifiers for all state championship meets finished in the top eight in their event, individual or relay, at the East or Central Regional events last weekend.