Flashes take 3rd; relay team wins state title

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 5, 2002

[11/05/02]With only 10 swimmers competing in the MHSAA State Swimming Championship Saturday, St. Aloysius swam past expectations and proved that even the small schools can make a big splash.

The Flashes earned a second straight third place finish in state while the Lady Flashes took 18th Saturday in Biloxi, their best finish ever in a state meet.

Tupelo won the women’s meet, and Biloxi won on the men’s side.

“I think the kids learned to have their big swims at the big meets,” Flashes coach Bruce Ebersole said. “We’re always hurt by depth, but all of them were able to step it up and swim their best times or right at their best times.”

The Flashes’ 200 medley relay of Allen Karel, Alan Ebersole, Bern Ebersole and Will Tomlinson surged to a first-place finish while just missing the state record by a half-second, then backed up their performance with a second-place finish in the 200 freestyle relay.

The Flashes continued to collect points in the individual races, led by Alan Ebersole’s second place finish in the 200 individual medley and a first place finish in the 100 breaststroke, missing the state record by just under a second.

“I was real happy. It was my first time as an individual state champion, and that was always a goal,” senior Alan Ebersole said. “It was a good way to end it.”

Bern Ebersole finished second in the 500 freestyle, Tomlinson finished third in the 50 freestyle, Karel placed third in the 100 backstroke and Jase Ebersole placed 16th in the 200 individual medley.

The Lady Flashes came out strong right off the block.

Emily Clarke, Bonney Neill, Lauryn Martin and Michelle Shoenberger used a team record to place eighth in the 200-yard medley relay while setting the mark as the first Lady Flashes team to place in the top sixteen in state.

“The girls team has never scored points at a state meet before, so it shows how hard they worked,” Bruce Ebersole said. “It’s a young team, only one junior and one sophomore, and everybody else is a ninth grader or younger, so it bodes well for the future.”

Warren Central’s girls finished 19th, with 29 points, and the WC boys were 25, with 12 points. Vicksburg High competed in the meet, but did not point.

WC’s Elena English was eighth in the womens 100 yard freestyle, and Drew White was 10th in the mens 100 yard breaststroke.