Swimming & Diving: Nyah Funderburke, Olivia Morse lead CSG to eighth consecutive district title
Nyah Funderburke and Olivia Morse both won two individual events to help lead the Columbus School for Girls swimming and diving team to its eighth consecutive Division II district championship Feb. 18 at Bowling Green.
The Unicorns scored 308 points to nearly double up runner-up St. Clairsville (166). Columbus Academy was third (143), Hartley was fifth (112.5) and Bexley was sixth (97).
“The girls pulled through it and did a great job,” CSG coach Brian Botzman said. “It was all about teamwork.
“The girls have gone through so much in the last year with (the) COVID(-19 coronavirus pandemic) and other things you have to deal with. Coming to school and trying to stay healthy really wears on you.”
Funderburke won the 100-yard backstroke in a district-record 54.51 seconds and the 100 butterfly in 55.41. Morse finished first in the 50 freestyle (24.21) and 100 free (53.31).
The top two finishers in each event advanced to state Feb. 24 and 25 at Branin Natatorium in Canton. In addition, 16 swimmers in each event will earn at-large berths based on district times statewide.
Funderburke and Morse also were members of two district-champion relays. They were on the 200 medley relay (district-record 1:44.96) with Ava Fortney and Bethany Spangler, and the 200 free relay (1:39.11) with Allie Gunsorek and Eva Schindler.
Fortney was runner-up in the 100 breaststroke (program-record 1:04.23) and 100 free (54.36).
Grandview’s Phoebe Ferguson qualified in two events, winning the 200 individual medley (2:06.96) and placing second in the 100 fly (57.06). Bexley’s Anja Hoy was runner-up in the 100 back (59.48).
For the boys, DeSales’ Brady McInerney won the 100 free (46.45) and 200 free (1:40.98). Wellington’s Heath Thomas won the 200 IM (2:01.7) and was runner-up in the 500 free (4:59.88).
Academy’s 200 free relay of Drake Bellisari, Cy Richardson, Alek Balaloski and Gavin Lewis was second in 1:32.45.
Dover (218.5) won the boys title. Academy was fifth (146) and Wellington was seventh (115).