South boys finish first, girls second

PARKERSBURG – Senior day turned out pretty well for the Parkersburg South swim team during Saturday afternoon’s Patriot Invitational at the Boys and Girls Club.

Head coach Steve Lutz’s program not only honored eight 12th-graders – Garrett DePergola, Ryan Hesselrode, Amy Logue, Zach Marion, Natasha McFarland, Joe Miller, Anna Pasternak and Brittany Walker – but also won the boys crown and finished second to Wheeling Park’s girls.

The host Patriot boys finished with 444 points to easily outdistance runner-up Wheeling Park’s 342. The WPHS girls tallied 372, PSHS had 322 and Marietta was third with 246.

Although there were several local winners, a record-breaking triumph came during the 200 freestyle relay. That’s where Parkersburg South teammates Garrett Fink, Garrett DePergola, Joe Miller and Kinzie Bailey finished with a new Patriot school record time of 1:37.53.

“We normally break those guys up. We saved it for today and they went out and broke it,” Lutz said of the quartet. “They had been looking at it and I had been thinking about it for a few weeks.

“As I ran the numbers in my head I kept thinking they could have a real good chance of breaking that record. It’s exciting. I was real proud of them.”

The same foursome also took top honors in the 200 medley relay thanks to a time of 1:52.30.

Individually, Miller posted 200 freestyle (1:59.08) and 500 freestyle (5:21.21) triumphs while Fink also was a double-winner. Fink touched the wall first in the 50 freestyle in 23.23 and also claimed the 100 butterfly title with a clocking of 58.34.

Parkersburg South also received a victory in the 100 backstroke from Lane Burton (1:04.30) and a pair of runner-up efforts by DePergola in the 100 freestyle (57.36) and 100 breaststroke (1:11.69).

Marietta, which finished fourth in the team race, was led by a pair of Nathan McVicar third place showings in the 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly.

Parkersburg South’s Anna Pasternak (50 freestyle, 27.44) and Marietta’s Cooper Halliday (500 freestyle, 5:49.09) had the only area girls victories.

Halliday also took runner-up honors in the 200 freestyle. Tiger teammates Lucia Picciano and Haley Varnadoe finished second in the 100 butterfly and 500 freestyle, respectively.

Parkersburg South’s lone second place effort came in the 200 individual medley thanks to Emily Gersper.

Williamstown’s girls finished fourth and the top individual finish by the Yellowjackets came in the 100 backstroke from runner-up Kristianna Weppler.

The host Patriots – thanks to Pasternak, Rachel Kirk, Gersper and Hesselrode – had the only local team win and that came in the 200 freestyle relay (1:53.03).