TAMPA — Jesuit did what it has done the past 16 years on Saturday afternoon. It won a district swimming title, or rather, it dominated the field in winning the Class 2A-District 8 swimming championship.
The Tigers won with 614 points, almost 300 ahead of Robinson (320). Spoto was third with 291.
Jesuit’s sister school, the Academy of the Holy Names, also dominated, taking its sixth consecutive district title with 677 points, 324 ahead of runner-up Robinson. Lake Wales finished third with 221.
More importantly, all of the Jesuit and Academy swimmers expected to make strong runs toward the state meet swam according to plan on Saturday, which means everybody’s training is right on schedule.
“We’re still heavily training and their bodies are pretty broken down right now,” Jesuit and Academy coach Bill Shaffer said. “So to swim like we did today is very encouraging.”
There were plenty of leaders for both the Jaguars and Tigers, including Olivia Kirkpatrick, who cruised to victories in the 100 backstroke (1 minute, .97 seconds) and the 50 free (25.33) and helped the Jags’ 200 medley and the 400 free relay to victories as well.
Spoto’s Maureen Moore broke up the Jags’ event winning streaks by taking the 500 free (5:07.98) and 200 free (1:56.96) titles. Robinson’s Ross Brown did the same on the boys’ side, winning the 50 free (22.10) and the 100 free (48.67) while helping the Knights to victory in the 400 free relay (3:27.5).
Spoto’s Tyler Graves also stood out, winning the 200 IM (2:01.21) and taking second in the 100 breaststroke to Jesuit’s Austin Sellers, who won in 1:00.43.
Class 2A-6: Gators girls take fifth straight title
CLEARWATER — It’s been 21 years coaching, with three sons coming through the ranks and a final district title celebration leap for Land O’ Lakes coach Robin Hilgenberg Saturday afternoon at the Long Center.
Robin’s youngest son, Cam, took a last dive into the pool, and the Gators girls won their fifth consecutive district title, beating Lecanto 558-438 at the Class 2A-District 6 meet.
“I’m really proud of what me and the boys have done here for Land O’ Lakes swimming,” Robin Hilgenberg said. “This group of girls is one I’ve coached since they were 6 years old. It’s special. I’m really excited for this group of seniors moving forward to regionals. I think a lot of them had their best swims today.”
The district title is the sixth the Gators have won under Hilgenberg. The Gators edged out the Panthers, with Spring Hill Springstead (227 points), Pasco (183 points) and Hudson (151 points) rounding out the top five teams.
Several Land O’ Lakes girls took district titles, including Jocelyn Williams (200 IM), Krystin Demsher (100 freestyle) and freshman Pierce Imperialbobis (500 freestyle). Other notables were Wesley Chapel’s Abbey Duncan (100 butterfly) and Zephyrhills’ Ashley Morris (1 meter diving).
On the boys side, Lecanto upended Land O’ Lakes and won the district’s top spot with a 352-318 advantage.
Spring Hill Springstead (277 points), Pasco (248 points) and Weeki Wachee (169) also finished in the top five.
Land O’ Lakes’ Cam Hilgenberg (50 freestyle), Jordan Wheeler (200 IM, 100 butterfly) and Fivay’s William Haas (100 backstroke) won titles.
“We were absolutely pleased with the results,” Spring Hill Springstead coach Wayne Withington said. “Going into this, we were thinking we could finish somewhere around third place and that’s what we were able to do. We’re hoping this finish can help gain some interest in swimming within our county, not just our team.”