San Angelo Central sweeps District 2-6A swimming and diving titles

·10 min read
San Angelo Central High School's Cody Fentress competes at the San Angelo Swimming & Diving Invitational at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.
San Angelo Central High School's Cody Fentress competes at the San Angelo Swimming & Diving Invitational at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.

The San Angelo Central High School boys and girls swept the team titles at the District 2-6A Swimming & Diving Championships at the City of Midland Aquatics Center on Thursday.

Bobcats senior Cody Fentress was named the Boys' Swimmer of the Meet, and Central's Matt McLaughlin was named the Boys' and Girls' Swim Coach of the Meet.

The Central boys won the district title for the 12th year, while the girls team bounced back from a second-place finish behind Midland High last year.

On the boys' side, the Bobcats finished with 194 points, well ahead of Midland (129). The Lady Cats held off Midland 190-172.

San Angelo Central High School swimmer Emma Watkins is pictured during the 2021 season.
San Angelo Central High School swimmer Emma Watkins is pictured during the 2021 season.

"That's what we've been working towards all year," McLaughlin said. "We told this group of girls at our first or second practice this year that this was the group that had the talent and the depth to win back the district title and they proved it today.

"We were strong in events that we haven't really been strong in before, with Emma (Watkins) winning the 200 freestyle. Every single one of our girls scored in their events in the top eight. It was a total team effort on the girls' side."

Central qualified a total of 32 swimmers for regionals -- 18 boys and 14 girls.

The top six individual finishers and top six relays punched their tickets to the Region I-6A meet in Mansfield on Feb. 3-5.

Last year, only the top four from each district advanced to state due to COVID restrictions.

San Angelo Central High School's Whitney Edinburgh competes at the San Angelo Swimming & Diving Invitational at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.
San Angelo Central High School's Whitney Edinburgh competes at the San Angelo Swimming & Diving Invitational at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.

Fentress swept the 100- and 200-yard freestyles and helped Central win the 200 medley and 200 freestyle relays. Fentress established a new district record in the 200 free with a time of 1 minute, 43.42 seconds. He was clocked at 47.66 seconds in the 100 free.

"I felt great," Fentress said. "It was just phenomenal. I had a great district meet. It couldn't have gone any better for the girls and the guys. Both won district championships.

"It was great winning all my events and getting the district record. I'm so thankful that I had the opportunity to do that and for my teammates, along with my coaches, just to push me to get that."

A San Angelo Central High School swimmer gets ready to hit the water at the San Angelo Swimming & Diving Invitational at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.
A San Angelo Central High School swimmer gets ready to hit the water at the San Angelo Swimming & Diving Invitational at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.

The Lady Cats got first-place finishes by Whitney Edinburgh, who broke her own school record in the 100 butterfly (58.09), and Watkins in the 200 freestyle (2:05.17).

The Central girls were ecstatic to turn the tables on the Lady Bulldogs.

"It felt amazing," Watkins said. "It was definitely a relief to finally get first and like a breath of fresh air."

Edinburgh talked about breaking her school record in the 100 fly.

"I honestly was not expecting that and whenever I saw a faster time than I was (previously) holding, it was an amazing feeling," the Lady Cats junior said.

San Angelo Central High School junior Brayden Brewer goes through workouts at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021.
San Angelo Central High School junior Brayden Brewer goes through workouts at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021.

Central's Samuel Helm placed first in the 50 freestyle and 100 backstroke, in addition to swimming a leg on the two first-place relays.

Senior Brayden Brewer was second behind Helm in the 50 free (22.93).

Teammate Earl Childs was the 100 breaststroke champion (1:05.33), and he also swam a leg on the 200 medley relay.

The Bobcats' 200 medley relay of Helm, Childs, Fentress and Brewer was clocked at 1 minute, 41.38 seconds.

San Angelo Central High School junior Samuel Helm goes through workouts at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021.
San Angelo Central High School junior Samuel Helm goes through workouts at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021.

The quartet of Fentress, Peacock, Brewer and Helm turned in a winning time of 1:31.52 in the 200 free relay.

The Central boys were second in the 400 freestyle relay behind Midland with a time of 3:27.80.

The Bobcats also got second-place finishes from Creed Thompson in the 100 fly (55.47) and James Parkes in the 500 free (5:59.78).

The Lady Cats took second in all three relays -- the 200 medley (1:53.83), the 200 free (1:44.07) and the 400 free (3:54.80).

Edinburgh added a second-place finish in the 100 backstroke (1:01.84), and teammate Camila Acevedo was the runnerup in the 100 breaststroke (1:10.74).

San Angelo Central High School head swimming coach Matt McLaughlin keeps a close eye on his team at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021.
San Angelo Central High School head swimming coach Matt McLaughlin keeps a close eye on his team at the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021.

The COVID restrictions that limited the number of regional qualifiers last year really put a damper on things, but things returned to a sense of normalcy in 2022.

"A lot of the underclassmen were very upset last year," Brewer said. "It was really hard, knowing that they put in all this work and then they didn't get rewarded in the end because of COVID, but now they're finally getting to see the results of their hard work."

McLaughlin can't wait to see what his swimmers can do when they put their seasons on the line at regionals next month.

"We're bringing most everyone from district to regionals, so they get another opportunity to swim fast," McLaughlin said. "I think we have a few shots at state, with Cody individually and the boys' relay."

The Central coach is hoping that he and his sister/assistant coach Megan McLaughlin can celebrate their first state qualifier since taking over the program after longtime head coach David Hague retired in 2019.

District 2-6A Swimming & Diving Championships

City of Midland Aquatics

Thursday

Top 8 finishers listed

Top 6 advance to the Region I-6A meet, Feb. 3-5 in Mansfield

Superlatives

Boys Swimmer of the Meet – Cody Fentress, Sr., San Angelo Central

Boys Diver of the Meet – Nicholas Stone, Sr., Midland High

Girls Swimmer of the Meet – PJ Day, Sr., Midland High

Girls Diver of the Meet – Averi McQuitty, Sr., Midland High

Boys & Girls Swim Coach of the Meet – Matt McLaughlin, San Angelo Central

Boys & Girls Dive Coach of the Meet – Roger Zunigha, Midland ISD

BOYS DIVISION

Team standings – 1. San Angelo Central 194, 2. Midland High 129, 3. Legacy 107, 4. Abilene High 30, 5. Odessa Permian 28, 6. Odessa High 22

200 medley relay – 1. Central (Samuel Helm, Earl Childs, Cody Fentress, Brayden Brewer) 1 minute, 41.38 seconds; 2. Midland 1:43.88, 3. Legacy 1:45.31; 4. Abilene 2:02.91; 5. Permian 2:10.58; 6. Odessa 2:26.38

200 freestyle – 1. Fentress, Central, 1:43.42; 2. George Workman, Legacy, 1:51.02; 3. Childs, Central, 1:56.09; 4. Caleb Peacock, Central, 1:56.52; 5. Sawyer Austin, Legacy, 1:57.89; 6. Zian Garcia, Midland, 2:00.90; 7. Troy Davis, Central, 2:04.03; 8. Reid Davis, Legacy, 2:18.30

200 IM – 1. Garrett Hoppman, Midland, 2:00.79; 2. Jake Shelton, Midland, 2:05.56; 3. Gavin Rochelle, Legacy, 2:09.51; 4. Rio Pena, Midland, 2:13.71; 5. Cole Jeannot, Central, 2:13.77; 6. Aidan Morales, Central, 2:21.62; 7. Jake Elliott, Central, 2:25.08; 8. Calvin Cartwright, Central, 2:33.81

50 freestyle – 1. Helm, Central, 22.78; 2. Brewer, Central, 22.93; 3. Lewis Trevino Tovaas, Central, 23.84; 4. Brendan Morgan, Legacy, 23.87; 5. Creed Thompson, Central, 23.87; 6. Aidan Pope, Legacy, 25.67; 7. Ian Ramsay, Midland, 26.24; 8. Holden Lewis, Legacy, 26.76

1-meter diving – 1. Nicholas Stone, Midland, 548.15; 2. Barrette Jacoby, Midland, 397.45

100 butterfly – 1. Hoppman, Midland, 53.60; 2. C. Thompson, Central, 55.47; 3. Lane Jordon, Midland, 56.85; 4. Janak Bhakta, Legacy, 57.19; 5. Tristan Thompson, Central, 57.50; 6. Jeannot, Central, 59.24; 7. Alexander Medina, Midland, 1:00.80; 8. Morgan, Legacy, 1:02.32

100 freestyle – 1. Fentress, Central, 47.66; 2. Shelton, Midland, 48.69; 3. Workman, Legacy, 50.28; 4. Brewer, Central, 51.18; 5. Peacock, Central, 52.32; 6. Trevino Tovaas, Central, 52.78; 7. Pope, Legacy, 57.72; 8. Finn Voss, Abilene, 58.60

500 freestyle – 1. Austin, Legacy, 5:23.72; 2. James Parkes, Central, 5:59.78; 3. Fischer Russwurm, Central, 6:04.59; 4. Ben Vu, Central, 6:05.16; 5. Jesus Urrutia, Odessa, 6:36.05

200 free relay – 1. Central (Fentress, Peacock, Brewer, Helm) 1:31.52; 2. Midland 1:35.22; 3. Legacy 1:45.28; 4. Abilene 1:48.54; 5. Permian 1:50.77; 6. Odessa 1:57.54

100 backstroke – 1. Helm, Central, 55.05; 2. Rochelle, Legacy, 58.48; 3. Bhakta, Legacy, 59.66; 4. T. Thompson, Central, 1:00.56; 5. Jordon, Midland, 1:01.14; 6. Garcia, Midland, 1:05.58; 7. Lewis, Legacy, 1:08.62; 8. Landon Schroeder, Abilene, 1:09.11

100 breaststroke – 1. Childs, Central, 1:05.33; 2. Pena, Midland, 1:06.94; 3. Aidan Morales, Central, 1:08.34; 4. Medina, Midland, 1:09.36; 5. Elliott, Central, 1:13.09; 6. Caleb Brown, Midland, 1:13.95; 7. Alex Sivley, Permian, 1:19.60; 8. Aaron Stubbs, Midland, 1:21.28

400 free relay – 1. Legacy (Rochelle, Bhakta, Morgan, Workman) 3:27.00; 2. Central 3:27.80; 3. Midland 3:45.38; 4. Permian 4:01.60; 5. Abilene 4:20.75; 6. Odessa 5:24.57

GIRLS DIVISION

Team standings – 1. San Angelo Central 190, 2. Midland High 172, 3. Legacy 81, 4. Odessa High 31, 5. Odessa Permian 30, 6. Abilene High 23

200-yard medley relay – 1. Midland (Meisi Holmes, PJ Day, Rilee Graham, Kamryn Keller) 1:50.65; 2. Central 1:53.83; 3. Legacy 2:00.45; 4. Odessa High 2:20.66; 5. Abilene 2:29.71; 6. Permian 2:48.40

200 freestyle – 1. Emma Watkins, Central, 2:05.17; 2. Elizabeth Sites, Legacy, 2:05.50; 3. Cora Ledgewood, Midland, 2:10.98; 4. Holly Herrington, Central, 2:11.45; 5. Haley Wroblewski, Central, 2:13.95; 6. Joanna Chavez, Central, 2:17.62; 7. Brenna Solis, Permian, 2:30.42; 8. Mia Mendez, Odessa, 2:34.80

200 IM – 1. Day, Midland, 2:09.83; 2. Charlotte Erickson, Midland, 2:25.12; 3. Camila Acevedo, Central, 2:28.22; 4. Zoey Moore, Central, 2:28.48; 5. Marisa Lopez, Central, 2:31.74; 6. Elizabeth Brown, Midland, 2:32.64; 7. Alejandra Reyes, Permian, 2:38.63; 8. Madison Morris, Legacy, 2:42.38

50 freestyle – 1. Holmes, Midland, 25.24; 2. Keller, Midland, 25.43; 3. Clara Cotton, Central, 26.65; 4. Paula Brame, Central, 26.71; 5. Mallorie Manning, Central, 26.87; 6. Salma Hernandez, Central, 27.04; 7. Alyssa Campbell, Midland, 27.74; 8. Blayke Thompson, Legacy, 28.31

1-meter diving – 1. Averi McQuitty, Midland, 457.95; 2. Allyse Abbott, Midland, 434.60; 3. Kylee Cruce, Midland, 335.50; 4. Regan Cole, Midland, 322.15

100 butterfly – 1. Whitney Edinburgh, Central, 58.09; 2. Holmes, Midland, 59.50; 3. Manning, Central, 1:02.00; 4. Brianna Ortiz, Legacy, 1:02.52; 5. Watkins, Central, 1:03.03; 6. Alina Wroblewski, Central, 1:09.13; 7. Mendez, Odessa, 1:26.50; 8. Lili Ortega, Abilene, 1:28.83

100 freestyle – 1. Katerina Cervenkova, Legacy, 54.00; 2. Graham, Midland, 55.74; 3. Erickson, Midland, 58.03; 4. Cotton, Central, 58.89; 5. Brame, Central, 58.91; 6. Katelyn Mygrants, Central, 59.13; 7. Hernandez, Central, 1:00.29; 8. Campbell, Midland, 1:01.31

500 freestyle – 1. Sites, Legacy, 5:40.54; 2. Ledgewood, Midland, 5:57.97; 3. Herrington, Central, 6:02.22; 4. Chavez, Central, 6:03.84; 5. A. Wroblewski, Central, 6:14.79; 6. H. Wroblewski, Central, 6:14.97; 7. Aubrey Nall, Odessa, 6:40.71; 8. Lynsey Hoppman, Midland, 7:12.32

200 free relay – 1. Midland (Day, Graham, Keller, Holmes) 1:40.97; 2. Central 1:44.07; 3. Legacy 1:56.02; 4. Permian 1:58.00; 5. Odessa 2:03.09; 6. Abilene 2:10.76

100 backstroke – 1. Cervenkova, Legacy, 58.53; 2. Edinburgh, Central, 1:01.84; 3. Graham, Midland, 1:03.22; 4. Moore, Central, 1:05.91; 5. Mygrants, Central, 1:06.98; 6. Shelby Fentress, Central, 1:07.26; 7. Morris, Legacy, 1:11.55; 8. Alexia Lara, Odessa, 1:20.01

100 breaststroke – 1. Day, Midland, 1:07.28; 2. Acevedo, Central, 1:10.74; 3. Sofia Blastick, Central, 1:14.71; 4. Jillian Dobbs, Central, 1:15.43; 5. Elizabeth Brown, Midland, 1:16.39; 6. Rylee Boser, Central, 1:19.35; 7. Thompson, Legacy, 1:23.47; 8. Camilla Aguilar, Odessa, 1:23.73

400 free relay – 1. Midland (Erickson, Ledgewood, Campbell, Keller) 3:53.57; 2. Central 3:54.80; 3. Legacy 3:57.01; 4. Permian 4:29.70; 5. Abilene 4:57.13; 6. Odessa 5:25.50

Charles Bryce is a journalist covering sports in West Texas. Send him a news tip at cbryce@gannett.com. Consider supporting West Texas journalism with a subscription to GoSanAngelo.com.

This article originally appeared on San Angelo Standard-Times: San Angelo Central sweeps District 2-6A swimming and diving titles

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