North rules

When the Columbus North and Columbus East boys and girls swimmers compete against each other again in February in the North Sectional, they’ll be much more rested.

But Tuesday night, in the schools’ annual dual meet, the Bull Frogs and Olympians were in the middle of a heavy meet schedule. With morning and afternoon practices, and the schools are training through this portion of their schedule.

North won all 12 events in the boys meet and all 11 swimming events in the girls meet. The Bull Frog boys won 149-30, while the North girls were victorious 122-60.

“They swam hard this morning and came back and raced hard tonight,” North coach Bridger Bell said. “They are worn out, tired, beat down and they’re still getting up and racing and that’s wonderful to see.”

Two double winners led both the Bull Frog boys and girls. Chase McQueen took the boys 200-yard freestyle (1 minute, 53.58 seconds) and 100 breaststroke (1:01.30), Jared Carroll captured the 50 freestyle (23.43) and 100 butterfly (56.91) and Jared Imlay. For the girls, Mackenzie Fry won the 200 freestyle (2:03.68) and 100 butterfly (1:02.37), and Grace Haskett took the 50 freestyle (24.37) and 100 backstroke (59.31).

Other boys winners for North were Sam Russell in the 200 individual medley (2:09.85), Kaemon Jiles in diving (270.00), Adam Zhuang in the 100 freestyle (52.28), Thomas Goble in the 500 freestyle (5:15.60) and Jared Imlay in the 100 backstroke (1:02.21). The Bull Frogs also swept the 200 medley (1:48.72), 200 freestyle (1:34.62) and 400 freestyle (3:29.79) relays.

Also winning for the North girls were Alex Nusawardhana in the 200 IM (2:21.48), Darby Coles in the 100 freestyle (55.36), Kaitlyn Niebrugge in the 500 freestyle (5:43.52) and Cori Taylor in the 100 breaststroke (1:18.18). The Bull Frogs swept the 200 medley (1:57.39), 200 freestyle (1:46.86) and 400 freestyle (3:47.24) relays.

“We’re fired up about it,” Bell said. “They raced each other, as well as the other team. It’s great to have this crosstown rivalry to get us fired up. It motivates swimmers on both sides.”

East’s lone victory on either side came in the girls diving competition, where Maggie Gregory scored 152.50 points. Cortney VanLiew was a close second in both of her races, swimming 24.96 in the 50 freestyle and 55.52 in the 100 freestyle. Brooke Statler finished second in the 200 freestyle (2:19.12), Raegan Bradley took second in the 100 butterfly (1:15.58) and the Olympians were second in the 200 freestyle (1:48.09) and 400 freestyle (4:05.90) relays.

“We came tonight to swim tired, but swim hard,” East girls coach Jill Arnholt said. “We have three meets this week, and we’re practicing them hard every night, so I wasn’t looking for best times tonight. I was looking for good, strong swims and mental toughness, and that’s what I got tonight.”

The top finishes for the East boys were third-place efforts from Derek Alexander in the 100 butterfly (1:08.30) and Austin Smith in the 100 freestyle (54.64).

“I’m not disappointed at all,” East boys coach Dave Fribley said. “We moved some people around because we had to get some ideas what the people could do. The times I saw were good.”

Author photo
Ted Schultz is sports editor for The Republic. He can be reached at or 812-379-5628.