FORT WASHINGTON - The Mercersburg Academy girls captured the Eastern Interscholastic Swimming and Diving Championship on Saturday for the first time since 1987 after two days of competition.
The girls totaled 471 points to beat second-place Episcopal Academy, which scored 461 points.
Mercersburg trailed Episcopal after the one-meter diving event 281-261, but two top-five finishes from Mercersburg swimmers in the 100 freestyle aided the Blue Storm in a comeback. Lindsay Tanner (51.30) and Sarah O'Leary (52.57) placed second and fifth, respectively, and along with an 11th place finish by Lizzie Troy (54.58) and a 12th place finish Abigail Voce (54.62), the Blue Storm reclaimed the lead, 319-294, and kept it the rest of the way.
In Tanner's second-place finish in the 100 free, she broke the school record for the second time in 12 hours, touching the wall in 51.30. Tanner initially broke the school record in the morning session, which had been held by Olympic gold medalist Betsy Mitchell for the last 33 years.
Stephanie Downing placed second in the 500 free (5:03.27), while Courtney Levins took silver in the 100 breaststroke (1:05.37).
“It was a true team effort, and it was flat-out fun to be a part of,” Mercersburg coach Glenn Neufeld said. “It took 471 points to win this championship and we needed every one of them."
The Mercersburg boys team took sixth at the championship with 216 points. The boys 400 relay was its most successful of the day, placing third with a 3:08.83 finishing time. The relay team consisted of Andrew Zhugayevich, Logan Cort, Jake Girard and Ben Carter. Zhugayevich also placed sixth in the 100 free in 46.01.