Harpeth Hall Wins 5th Consecutive Swimming and Diving State Championship Title
The Harpeth Hall Bearacudas won their fifth consecutive Tennessee State Swimming and Diving State Championship this past weekend in Knoxville at the University of Tennessee, taking the total to 12 state titles for the Bearacudas since 2001. The Bearacudas took their success at the state level in recent years to new heights in 2018, breaking individual, state and National Independent School records.
Harpeth Hall placed at least one girl in the finals of every event and earned top honors in six of the eight individual swimming events, taking second place in the remaining two, and winning all three relays. The opening event of the final session Friday night, the 200 medley relay, demonstrated the caliber of this team. The girls won the event with a 10 second margin of victory, setting not only a new state record, but also a National Independent School record. Additionally, freshman Gretchen Walsh secured an individual National Independent School record in the 50 free. The Bearacudas left the Allan Jones Aquatic Center Friday night with a comfortable 50 point lead.
Friday night finalists recap:
200 medley relay (A. Walsh, Nelson, A. Massey, G. Walsh), state champions
200 free, Alex Walsh, state champion
200 im, Ella Nelson, state champion
50 free, Gretchen Walsh, state champion
50 free, Ophelia Pilkinton, runner-up
50 free, Kate Mabry, 14th place
100 fly, Alex Massey, runner-up
100 fly, Julia Jane Eskew, fifth place
Diving, Mia Brakebill, 9th place
Diving, Millie Kirkland, 13th place
Saturday, the Bearacudas returned to the pool rested and ready and made an equally strong showing on day two. Alex Walsh secured an individual National Independent School record in the 100 breast, and the Bearacuda's 200 free relay secured the title but missed the Tennessee state and National Independent School record by two-tenths of a second.
Saturday night finalists recap:
100 free, Ophelia Pilkinton, state champion
500 free, Ella Nelson, runner-up
200 free relay (Pilkinton, A. Massey, Eskew, G. Walsh), state champions
100 back, Gretchen Walsh, state champion
100 back, Alex Massey, 5th place
100 back, Kate Mabry, 13th place
100 breast, Alex Walsh, state champion
100 breast, Julia Jane Eskew, 5th place
400 free relay (Pilkinton, Nelson, Eskew, A. Walsh), state champions
Although they were in Knoxville, Coach Linden reports that the team felt the support of the Honeybear Nation from across the state. Some fans made the trip to cheer them on, while others followed along via live stream from home; and the Bearacudas heard you all loud and clear --- and appreciate your support!
Congratulations Bearacudas! Congratulations Coach Linden! We are so proud of you!!
Complete Meet Results - See left side and click on "Latest Completed Events"