- Cullman, Alabama

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July 19, 2013

LOCAL SWIMMING: Catfish ready to host state meet after strong showing at district

GUNTERSVILLE — The Cullman Swim Team barreled its way through its regular-season schedule over the summer and seemed determined to make big waves at last week’s district meet in Guntersville.

Although the Catfish failed to gain top honors, they finished a very respectful third behind first-place Madison (1,151 points) and just 22 points behind runner-up Scottsboro (596.5).

Sawyer Trimble went beast mode yet again for Cullman, finishing the meet as the only tri-event winner for the Catfish with victories in the 100-yard individual medley, 25-yard breaststroke and 50-yard freestyle.

In the 15- to 18-year-old age group, Bennett Glasscock earned himself a pair of event wins in the 100-yard IM and 50-yard backstroke. He also placed second in the 50-yard butterfly. In all three instances, Glasscock lowered team records he was already holding.

Other record breakers on the boys’ side included Neil Norris, whose fourth-place finish in the 50-yard butterfly (29.39) bested a team-record in the event set back in July 2012.

Trimble, Luke Johnson, Jacob Hilb and C.J. Arnold combined for fourth in the 100-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:14.07, besting a team record set all the way back in 1995.

For the girls, Reese McNeel and Claire Ogstad shone for the Catfish in the 9-10 age group, with McNeel placing first in both the 50-yard butterfly and backstroke events — setting an individual record in the latter — and Ogstad finishing first in the 50-yard backstroke and second in the 100-yard freestyle. Ogstad’s backstroke time extended her team record, while her time of 1:06.73 was good enough for a top team mark in the freestyle, previously set by McNeel back in early June.

Ogstad, McNeel, Kelly Warren and Cabri Adams combined to set a new team record with a first-place finish in the 200-yard freestyle medley.

Lastly, Sarah Peel (13-14) finished first in the 50-yard breaststroke, second in the 100-yard IM and third in the 100-yard freestyle, setting new team records in the breaststroke, freestyle and IM.

Peel combined with Callie Hollingsworth, Kacie Donaldson and Morgan Matz for second in the 200-yard medley, finishing in 2:02.71 to better their own team record.

Meanwhile, the diving team for the Catfish hammered home an easy first-place finish with 137 team points. Second-place Madison finished with 86.

Cullman has owned the diving portion of the competition since the Aquatic Center opened in 2009.

McNeel, Anna Evans (13-14) and Michael Bentley (15-18) claimed first at the 1-meter height, while Reagan Martin (12u) and Bentley took home first at 3 meters.

Next up for the Catfish will be the Alabama Recreation and Parks Association (ARPA) State Swimming and Diving Championship, which will be hosted by Cullman Wellness and Aquatic Center July 25-27.

Approximately 5,000 folks from all across the state are expected to make the trip to Cullman for the event, which will get going with the diving portion of the competition on July 25. The swimming section will follow July 26-27.

Cullman also hosted the championship in 2011.

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