WINSTON-SALEM —Conference play got an early start this season for the Mount Airy swimming teams.
The Granite Bears traveled to Winston-Salem State University for a dual meet hosted by Northwest Conference rival Atkins. The girls’ team won by a score of 101-43, while the boys were came up short at 68-47.
“I am very excited about an early season meet. I am happy with the effort that the kids put in, and I love the idea of being able to identify things that they’ll improve on throughout the season,” said Mount Airy coach Jay Williams.
Two of the Lady Bears performed at a top-tier level against their opponents. Sierra Best and Lindley Williams each collected two first-places finishes in individual events. Best, swimming in lane four, captured wins in the 200 Individual Medley and 100 Freestyle. Williams recorded her first-place finishes competing in the 200 Freestyle and the 500 Freestyle.
With only four events left to swim, the meet was all but won by the Mount Airy girls. The Lady Bears had almost doubled up on points against their opposition, leading the Camels at 61-33. Atkins could still mathematically win with a strong finish, but instead, it was the visitors who did so.
In the girls’ 200 Free Relay, Mount Airy racked up a quick 12 points, having first-, second- and fourth-place finishes. In the 100 Backstroke, Elizabeth Marion posted a time of 1:29.50, while teammate Abigail Gilley was close behind with a time of 1:29.59. The women’s lane four 400 Free Relay team also collected a first-place finish with a time of 4:33.20.
These victories propelled the girls to a commanding lead at the end, 101-43.
The situation was reversed for the boys, who trailed 46-25 going into their last four events. Mount Airy’s boys didn’t manage any first-place finishes during the last four events, but the Granite Bears did gain 22 points from them, matching Atkins point for point down the stretch. However, that momentum wasn’t enough to rally one out against Atkins. The Camels still held the same 21-point lead that they’d held going into the stretch run and took the victory.
The Granite Bears and Lady Bears will take on the Camels again Tuesday evening, this time with East Surry as the host at the Armfield Center in Pilot Mountain, at 6 p.m.