Santa Margarita girls’ swim team didn’t need to set state meet relay records by the time the events arrived in the late afternoon of May 19.
The Eagles didn’t even need to finish the races, since they already had all the points they needed to clinch the CIF State Swimming and Diving championship at Clovis High School. So what did they do?
They won both, of course — setting state meet records in both, as they concluded their dynamic 2018 season with their first state title in dominant fashion, just as they’d won the CIF-Southern Section Division 1 crown the previous week.
The records were set in the 200 freestyle relay (1:32.44) by the quartet of sophomore Anicka Delgado, junior Mackenzie Degn and seniors Marriott Hoffmann and Samantha Shelton, and in the 400 freestyle relay (3:19.56) by Delgado, Degn, Shelton and sophomore Ella Ristic.
When Degn finished ninth (first in the consolation final) of the 500 freestyle, it gave the Eagles 161.5 points, all they would need on their way to 266.5, far ahead of runner-up Monte Vista (159 points). The only other local Catholic schools to earn points were Mater Dei (27, 24th place) and St. Lucy’s (18, tied for 35th).
Santa Margarita began the meet in fine fashion, as sophomore Alexandra Barnes placed third in the 1-meter diving final on May 18. The Eagles then placed third in the first event of May, 19, the 200 medley relay, with the team of twin sisters Ella and Mia Ristic and seniors Hoffmann and Isabelle Odgers.
The point parade continued in the 200 free, with Ella Ristic second (.32 from first), Degn fifth and Shelton eighth. Odgers was sixth in the 200 individual medley; Delgado was second in the 50 free (tie) and 100 butterfly; Ella Ristic was third in the 100 free; and Odgers was seventh, sophomore Katie Nugent ninth, and junior Kimberly Woolfenden 13th in the 100 breaststroke.
Mater Dei was led by junior Stephanie Su, fourth in the 500 free, and the 200 medley relay team of freshman Kailia Utley, seniors Lauren Openshaw and Brianna Buckle, and sophomore Lily Olson, which finished 11th.
St. Lucy’s points came from freshman Marly Lough, tenth in the 200 free and eighth in the 100 free.