As expected, Dublin Scioto High School swimming standouts Kate McNeilis and Jacob Schuster are returning to the Division I swimming and diving state championships Friday at the C.T. Branin Natatorium in Canton.

As expected, Dublin Scioto High School swimming standouts Kate McNeilis and Jacob Schuster are returning to the Division I swimming and diving state championships Friday at the C.T. Branin Natatorium in Canton.

Scioto is coming off a strong showing at the district meet last Saturday at Ohio State. The girls finished fifth (163) behind first-place Upper Arlington (472) and the boys were sixth (130) behind champion St. Charles (399.5).

The Irish will be represented by five girls and four boys.

McNeilis, who will swim at Tennessee, is looking to defend her title in the 100-yard backstroke. She is the No. 1 seed (54.56).

McNeilis is also considered a favorite in the 200 freestyle (1:49.82) and the No. 2 seed behind Cincinnati Ursuline's Breann McDowell (1:49.28).

McNeilis, who is a four-time state qualifier, shattered the program record in the 200 free at district.

She joins Kate Henry, Elizabeth Harty and Caitlin Harty on the 200 medley relay, which is seeded eighth.

McNeilis, Caitlin Harty, Elizabeth Harty and Laura Cornette are seeded 10th in the 400 free relay.

Elizabeth Harty is making her first state meet appearance, but the freshman boasts ample success at the club level.

Harty is seeded fifth in the 100 free and ninth in the 100 butterfly. She shattered the program record in the 100 fly (57.27) at district.

"Liz is such a good racer," coach Mike de Bear said. "You never know with a freshman, but hopefully she doesn't even realize what a big-time meet it is. She's been in a lot of big meets growing up. We knew what type of swimmer she was coming in."

After placing in the 100 back (fourth) and 100 fly (sixth) last season at state, Schuster is competing in two different events this weekend. He is the No. 1 seed in the 100 and 200 free. Schuster set a program record in the 100 free (45.72) at district.

Last season, he placed fourth in the 100 back and sixth in the 100 fly at state.

"The main goal is to drop time, but being the top seed is pretty good, too," Schuster said. "I have to clean up my walls and basically just fine-tune my whole race. I have to think of all the little things."

Schuster, Natsuki Nakano, Sean Earley and Josh Leary are seeded 12th in the 200 medley relay and 17th in the 400 free relay.

•Sophomore Nichole Gill is leading the Coffman contingent to state.

Gill is seeded fourth in the 100 breaststroke and 10th in the 200 individual medley.

"Nichole had a great day," coach Steven VonSchriltz said. "All the girls swam really well."

Monica Welcker is seeded 19th in the 100 breast.

Gill, Welcker, Zoe Spornhauer and Hillary Knisley teamed to finish second at district in the 200 medley relay and are seeded sixth at state.

Gill, Stephanie Zepp, Lizzy Bryan and Hillary Knisley are seeded 17th in the 200 free relay.

"We would like to maintain our top eight spot for the medley and would like Nichole to be top eight in her events, and for Monica to make finals," VonSchriltz said.

Tim O'Brien, Kyle Bailey, Srikanth Gowda and Orion Martin will represent the boys team in the 200 medley relay. The team is seeded sixth.

"That's a great accomplishment for them," VonSchriltz said.

The girls finished fourth (183) and the boys 11th (87) at district.

• Jerome qualified three divers for state, which was held last Wednesday.

Representing the Celtics were returning state place-finisher Hattie Lamping on the girls side and Jacob Kasper and Grant Saale for the boys, who finished first (443.75) and second (420.90), respectively, at district.

Lamping was third at district.

The boys were 12th (79) and the girls finished 13th (61).

"I was hoping to get at least one (swimmer) to state, but it wasn't our day for that," coach Tyler Prose said. "The kids swam well, but it just wasn't in the cards this year. It was a fast year and we just don't have the older kids, the juniors and seniors to lead us."


At a glance

Below are the state qualifiers with district time and state seeds for the Coffman, Jerome and Scioto boys and girls swimming and diving teams:

COFFMAN BOYS

200 medley relay (1:39.57, 20th)

COFFMAN GIRLS

Nichole Gill: 100 breast (1:05.20, fourth), 200 IM (2:06.76, 10th); Monica Welcker: 100 breast (1:07.68, 19th); 200 free relay (17th, 1:40.08); 200 medley relay (1:48.25, sixth)

JEROME BOYS

Jacob Kasper: diving (443.75, seventh); Grant Saale: diving (420.90, 12th)

JEROME GIRLS

Hattie Lamping: diving (432.85, fifth)

SCIOTO BOYS

Jacob Schuster: 100 free (45.72, first), 200 free (1:40.61, first); 400 free relay (3:16.46, 17th); 200 medley relay (1:38.97, 12th)

SCIOTO GIRLS

Elizabeth Harty: 100 free (52.25, fifth), 100 fly (57.27, ninth); Kate McNeilis: 200 free (1:49.82, second), 100 back (54.56, first); 400 free relay (3:35.82, 10th); 200 medley relay (1:49.12, eighth)