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Tigers Compete in BRAC Conference Championship Swimming & Diving Meets!

On Thursday February 9th and Friday February 10th, the Hargrave Tigers hosted and competed in the BRAC Conference Diving Championship and BRAC Conference Swimming Championship inside the stunning Onishi-Davenport Aquatics Center! Head Coach, Amanda Weishaar, provided the following recaps for these events:

BRAC Diving Championship

Hargrave’s Dive Team, comprised of Jarius Steely, Patrick Souza, Elijah Willette, and Artem Vorontsov all qualified for the VISAA State Diving Championship this coming weekend following a stellar performance on Thursday night!

BRAC Swimming Championship

With the merging of two conferences we now have the title of BRAC (Blue Ridge Athletic Conference) and we had nine schools in attendance: Chatham Hall; Roanoke Catholic; The Covenant; New Covenant; Virginia Episcopal School; Fishburne Military School; Miller School; and North Cross. Hargrave was hosting the Championships for the 4th straight year but Roanoke Catholic was running the meet for the 3rd straight year. It was a well oiled machine!

With a Championship we are severely limited on the number of individual entries (4 individuals per event); and 2 relays (with only the A relay being allowed to score). Therefore, out of the 26 participating team members, 10 only had one event; 15 had 2 events; and only 1 person had 3 events. The instructions were 1 (and only eventers) to give maximum effort; 2 eventers to give maximum effort for the 1st event and to run on mental fortitude for the 2nd event! The 3rd event was just to go crazy!!

The top 3 of each event would win a medal; and the team with the highest points would win the Conference!

200 Medley Relay:

  • We had one relay consisting of Isaiah Walton,  ’26 (Silver Spring, MD);  Nathaniel Duff, 23 (Vernon Hill, VA);  Patrick Souza, ’25 (Clarksville, VA); and  John Classen, ’25 (McLean, VA swam a personal best and came in 6th place and scoring us 6 points.
    • FYI Isaiah should have DQ’d the team with a two stroke flip turn but the official was looking the wrong way!

200 Freestyle:

  • Stephen Yang, ’24 (Oakridge, NC) came in 5th overall and 1st for HMA. He unfortunately had a goggles issue as they filled with water and he could not see the entire time! But he scored 4 points!
  • Kelsten Hudson, ’25 (Danville, VA) came in 6th overall and dropped 3.08 seconds and declared 1: this was his event; 2: he wants to do all the hardest events next year!! Kelsten scored 3 points!
  • Isaac Wadsworth, ’26 (San Antonio, FL) was unable to drop any time but he fought off some stiff competition and scored 1 point!
  • Charles Gaddy, ’26 (Manteo, NC) was swimming his 1st 200 Freestyle and it shows how much he has come along since joining the team in January! Charles came second in his heat!

200 Individual Medley

  • This event is a tough one and we only have 5 swimmer’s out of the whole team who can (un)comfortably swim it!
  • Junior Verwest, ’26 (Fort Myers, FL) was seeded 3rd place but suffering a lower leg injury earlier in the week, it was going to be tough. But “tough” is Junior’s middle name! He stayed neck-and-neck for the 1st 100 but you could see it paining him especially in the last 50. But he did awesome and received 3rd place – his first ever individual swimming medal at HMA! Junior scored 6 points!

50 Freestyle:

  • Bryce Adkins, ’23 (Gretna, VA); tried everything to make the 50 Bonus cut including shaving his legs! But the time remained just out of reach. Bryce came in 10th overall and 1st for HMA and dropped 0.04 seconds from this year’s personal best!
  • Archie Hooper, ’25 (Wilmington, NC) came in 2nd for HMA and dropped 1.52 seconds!
  • Elisha Dixon, ’27 (Ellicott City, MD) came in 3rd for HMA and he showed true grit competing while not being 100%. Great effort!
  • Andrew Francis, ’23 (Stephenson, VA) dropped 3.69 seconds! He has accomplished so much this season!

100 Butterfly:

  • Sebastian Medina, ’23 (Danville, VA) fought neck-and-neck even after swallowing a lung full of water for the first 65 yards. Even with this issue Sebastian came in 2nd overall and dropped 0.64 seconds and scored 7 points!

100 Freestyle

  • This was an amazing event because everyone dropped time!
  • Nicholas Meyers, ’23 (Alexandria, VA) came in 2nd for his heat and 1st for HMA. He dropped 7.61 seconds!
  • Jake Bradley, ’27 (Florham Park, NJ) came in 3rd for his heat and 2nd for HMA. He dropped 5.33 seconds!
  • Zachary Lu, ’27 (Redmond, WA) came in 4th for his heat and 3rd for HMA and he dropped 9.29 seconds! Wow!
  • Zain Satti, ’25 (Danville, VA) has struggled all season but tonight he scored big. Finally under 2 minutes and dropped 10.49 seconds! Phenomenal!

500 Freestyle

  • Alex Vornotsov, ’27 (Indian Land, SC) gave it his all as he could barely walk afterwards! Alex dropped 6.73 seconds and scored 1 point!

200 Freestyle Relay

  • A Relay –  Junior Verwest, ’26 (Fort Myers, FL);  Aiden Dykstra, ’23 (Ten Sleep, WY);  John Wall, ’24 (Mount Juliet, TN); and  Sebastian Medina, ’23 (Danville, VA). According to my software these 4 had the potential to qualify for States in this event. And they did! This was so much fun to watch and I am so excited to take this relay team (my 1st for this event) next week. They came in 3rd overall, scored 12 points, and dropped 0.14 seconds off their predicted time!
  • B Relay –   John Classen, ’25 (McLean, VA);  Roger Adams, ’23 (Chatham, VA);  Jerry Li, ’26 (Sammamish, WA); and  Kelsten Hudson, ’25 (Danville, VA) did a great job and they dropped time as a team by 0.13 seconds!

100 Backstroke

  • Another amazing event with everyone dropping time!
  • Isaiah Walton,  ’26 (Silver Spring, MD) was trailing to Fishburne for 75 yards but then Isaiah crept up and eventually overtook him! Isaiah has been dropping time but only in small amounts but this time he dropped 4.04 seconds; 7th overall; 1st for HMA and scored 2 points!
  • Archie Hooper, ’25 (Wilmington, NC) came in 2nd for his heat; 2nd for HMA and dropped 3.09 seconds!
  • Elijah Willette, ’25 (Chatham, VA) is really coming along by finishing 3rd in his heat and dropped an amazing 17.45 seconds!!
  • Dax Alexander, ’25 (Kalispell, MT) was the only one in  his heat for HMA who performed the flip turns! He is tentatious in those! Dax dropped another 1.92 seconds!

100 Breaststroke

  • This was both an unlucky and a lucky event!
  • Nathaniel Duff, 23 (Vernon Hill, VA) came in 1st for his heat, 1st for HMA and 9th overall. Nathaniel has also struggled to drop time this season but as he finished his last every HMA swim meet he was able to drop 3.68 seconds!
  • Carson Pan, ’27 (Bellevue, WA) dropped 0.61 seconds!
  • Jake Bradley, ’27 (Florham Park, NJ) was not happy to be swimming this event after last week’s DII Invitational but Coach Cathy worked on him being more streamline and having a break between each stroke and Jake listened! His time was dropped by 13.39 seconds and came 2nd in his heat! And he was lucky to not be DQ’d as it looked like he forgot which event he was swimming in as he pulled his arms out to begin Butterfly! Luckily he was past the judges scope of zone and got away with it!
  • Nicholas Meyers, ’23 (Alexandria, VA) would have had an impressive 7 second drop but unfortunately he performed a one-hand touch and was DQ’d. He was gutted! But it shows that he has come a long way to drop that time even with a slower illegal turn!

400 Freestyle Relay

  • A Relay –  John Wall, ’24 (Mount Juliet, TN);  Aiden Dykstra, ’23 (Ten Sleep, WY);  Bryce Adkins, ’23 (Gretna, VA); and  Sebastian Medina, ’23 (Danville, VA) are the fastest 100 yard swimmers and they dropped further time by 2.94 seconds and came 3rd overall!
    • John Wall also had a seasonal personal best!
  • B Relay – unfortunately was DQ’d with an early take off from swimmer number 4!

With the scores totalled it came to:

The Covenant – 141

Virginia Epicospal – 99

New Covenant – 70

Roanoke Catholic – 66

Hargrave – 54

North Cross – 37

Fishburne – 13

Miller – 6