Lakeland City Meet: Jenkins Girls Set 2 Records En Route to Title
Fri. October 12, 2012 at 1:00 a.m. | By Solange Reyner
George Jenkins' Ashton Winters swims the breastroke leg in the boys 200-yard medley relay during The 24th Annual City of Lakeland Championship. (Photo by SCOTT WHEELER | THE LEDGER )
By SOLANGE REYNER
LAKELAND | For the George Jenkins girls swim team, winning the City of Lakeland Championship meet Thursday night for the 11th year in a row was simply extra icing on the cake. The sweetest part came earlier in the evening when Lucy Muller, Kyleigh Firman, Rachel Lulf and Hope Saunders etched their names in the city record books not once, but twice, by winning the 200-yard medley relay and 200 freestyle relay.
They posted one minute, 59.32 seconds in the 200 medley, breaking a 3-year-old record that was sitting at 2:00.16, and 1:45.45 in the 200 free relay.
"That was cool to watch," said Lakeland Christian coach Kristin Livesay, who, with her LCS teammates in 1999, held the previous record of 1:47.74. "I don't remember much from then but I do remember fist pumping as a seventh grader."
There wasn't much fist pumping from Muller, Firman, Lulf and Saunders, likely because they're already focused on another task: breaking the county record next Saturday and putting in a strong performance at regionals in early November to get to states.
"That's what we're going for next week," said Muller, who also placed second in the 50 free and 100 free.
Added Firman, who won the 50 free and 100 butterfly: "It's definitely one of the top things on our mind."
The girls relay records weren't the only ones broken Thursday. Lakeland Christian diver Stephen Mutz won the 1-meter diving event by posting 211.70 points. The previous record 209.55 points by Dustin Vincent in 1996.
Jenkins' dominance didn't stop with Firman's first-place finishes and the relay victories. Lulf won the 100 backstroke (1:04.46) and 200 freestyle (2:03.26) and Saunders the 500 freestyle (5:24.34) and 200 IM (2:18.41). Rachel Ringley from Santa Fe Catholic out-touched Muller in the 100 free to win the event for the second year in a row.
"We're on the same club team, and she's usually faster than me off the blocks in the 100," said Ringley, who also finished second in the 200 free. "But I was super pumped to come out and win today."
Lymaries Velez from LCS won the 100 breast (1:20.73) and Summer Thomas of Lakeland won the 1-meter diving title by posting 154.55 points.
Jenkins won the meet handily with 188 points, and Lakeland Christian came in second with 122 points. Lakeland was third with 76.
The Eagles dominated on the boys' side, too, despite missing top swimmer Alex Carson, who is out until at least districts because of kidney stone surgery. Jenkins had 170 points with first-place finishes in all three relays and Corey Brown won the 50 free in 23.17.
Lakeland came in second with 96 points despite the absence of top swimmer Alexander Sparbel, who will not return because of a fractured finger on his right hand. Santa Fe's Derek Peeples and LCS's Carson Knox each won two individual events.