By Tony Adams, Sports Editor
Individuals from the Belton Tigers and Lady Tigers Swim teams participated in events last Friday and Saturday at the 2016 Texas University Interscholastic League Class 6A at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin.
In the preliminary Boys’ 100-yard Butterfly, sophomore Noah Henry represented Belton in the event. Swimming the first 50-yard lap in 23.47, Noah swam the second 50 in 27.39 for a combined time of 50.86. The time was good for 11th place and a qualifying spot in the B Final.
In the event final, Noah equaled his 50.86, with cuts of 23.55 and 27.31. The 50.86 was good for third in the B finals in 11th in the state.
In the Girls’ 200-yard Freestyle Relay, Belton’s Kelsey Johnson, Maddie Finley, Savannah Henry and Maggie Murphy represented the Lady Tigers. With Johnson’s time of 24.92, Finley’s time of 24.23, Henry’s cut time of 24.83 and Murphy’s leg of 24.59, Belton qualified for the A heat final with a seventh-place time of 1:38.57. Jack LeVant won the state championship with a time of 48.20.
In the finals, Finley swam the lead leg in 24.78, Murphy swam the second leg in 24.19, Henry swam the third leg in 24.51 and Johnson swam the anchor leg in 24.72, capturing a time of 1:37.90, good for sixth place in the state. Humble Atascocita emerged as state champions with a time of 1:34.82.
Noah Henry was back in the water for the Boys’ 100-yard Backstroke. He swam the first lap of the preliminaries with a time of 24.17 and finished the preliminary heat with a time for 50.52, good for fifth place.
The finals saw Noah go sub-24 seconds with a starting lap of 23.88. He closed with a final lap of 25.92 for a combined 100-yard time of 49.80, good for a fourth-place finish in the state. Glen Cowand of Katy Cinco Ranch won the state championship with a time of 47.40.
In the 100-yard Breaststroke, Johnson competed in a loaded field and though she swam well, she placed 15th with a time of 1:08.22. She swam legs of 31.79 and 36.43 respectively, qualifying her for the B heat final.
In the finals, Johnson swam 30.67 in the opening leg and closed the race with a leg of 35.13, good for fourth place in the B heat final with a time of 1:05.80 and 12th place in the state. Victoria Hunt of Woodlands College Park claimed the state championship with a time of 1:03.91.
In the 400-yard Freestyle Relay, Murphy, Finley, Savannah Henry and Johnson hit the pool again to represent Belton. In the preliminaries, Murphy swam a first leg of 26.10 and second leg of 28.46, Finley swam a first leg of 26.41 and second leg of 28.95, Savannah swam a first leg of 25.34 and a second leg of 28.03 and Johnson swam a first leg of 25.99 and final leg of 28.69 for a total time of 3:37.97, good for 13th place and a spot in the B heat final.
Belton put the heat on Cinco Ranch, as Savannah swam the first leg with a combined time of 53.84, Murphy swam a combined time of 53.54, Johnson swam her leg in 53.69 and Finley swam her leg in 54.21 for a combined time of 3:35.28. The time was good for second in the B heat final, 1.35 behind Cinco Ranch and .02 better than Fort Bend Clements.
The Belton Tigers and Lady Tigers represented the community well, not only throughout the regular season, but at the Regional II Meet in Rockwall and the State Championships in Austin. Congratulations to the teams on their excellent 2015-2016 season.