SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – The Spartanburg Girls Swim Team set five state records while finishing Runner-Up at the 5A State Championship Meet last weekend.
The Vikings took Runner-Up to Wando at the North Charleston Aquatic Center on October 10.
“It was a blessing to have that group of girls working together and none of them acted like any of them were out for themselves. They were all out for the team,” said Johnna Edwards, who’s in her second year as head coach of the team.
“It was amazing. I loved competing with and against my teammates, and it was great to have such a tight group of girls go up against one of the biggest schools in the state,” added Kirsti McEnroe.
Wando, a school twice the size that featured double the swimmers, won by a 26-point margin. However, each of Spartanburg’s six participants scored in the championship, setting five state records in the process: two in relays and three in solo events.
“I think we all have such high goals that we set ourselves to such a high standard that we want to compete at that level,” said senior Annika McEnroe, who set 5A records in the 100 Fly and 200 Individual Medley.
“I’ve been growing up with this team since seventh grade and watching us get to this point where we break these records is really amazing, and being able to do it with some of my closest friends is great,” said Sophie Kannee. The senior recorded three first place finishes at the meet. ”
“They are able to do different events, different strokes; they all have perfect spots in the relays,” Edwards added.
One of those relays featured three sisters. Senior Annika, Junior Kirsti and 8th-grader Teagan McEnroe helped break a state record in the 400 Free relay. It’s the first time all three were able to compete together at state.
“It’s such an honor for all three of us to have two years together,” Annika said. “The fact that we’re representing our high school as three sisters together with another person on a relay it’s such an honor to make an impact for our school.”
“We all love racing each other and pushing each other at practice and at meets,” added Kirsti.
The Spartanburg Swimmers have been perfecting their craft with their club teams and at the Dr. T.K. Gregg Community Center, a brand new facility that opened just this year. A regimented practice schedule leading up to state is what helped produce that record setting performance.”
“They’re willing to get up in the morning at 4:30,” said Edwards. “They’re willing to go to practice for two hours before school. They’re willing to go to practice after school to come here to be with their teammates. It’s been a long time that they’ve been working this hard to get where they are.”
“Everyone’s trying their best and working their hardest and we’re all pushing each other and encouraging each other in the pool,” Kannee said. “It’s a lot easier to work hard and get better when you’re having fun.”
With medals in hand and their name in the record books, the 2020 Vikings take with them a lasting memory.
Spartanburg Girls Swimming 2020 State Championship Meet Results
200 Medley Relay (1st place and new 5A State Record): Sophie Kannee, Caroline Byers, Annika McEnroe, Kirsti McEnroe
200 Free: Kirsti McEnroe (1st place and new 5A State Record), Teagan McEnroe (3rd place)
200 IM : Annika McEnroe (1st place and new 5A State Record), Anna Buchert (4th place), Caroline Byers (9th place)
100 Fly: Annika McEnroe (1st place and new 5A State Record), Sophie Kannee (3rd place)
100 Free: Kirsti McEnroe (1st place), Teagan McEnroe (6th place)
500 Free: Anna Buchert (1st place)
200 Free Relay Sophie Kannee, Caroline Byers, Anna Buchert, Teagan McEnroe (1st place)
100 Back : Sophie Kannee (1st place)
100 Breast: Caroline Byers (3rd place)
400 Free Relay: Annika McEnroe, Anna Buchert, Teagan McEnroe, Kirsti McEnroe (1st place and new 5A State Record)