The student run newspaper of Poolesville High School

The Poolesville Pulse

The student run newspaper of Poolesville High School

The Poolesville Pulse

The student run newspaper of Poolesville High School

The Poolesville Pulse

Poolesville High School’s Swim and Dive Team States

Photo taken by Sydney Short

The yearly MPSSAA Swimming State Championships wrapped up on Feb 23rd and 24th, 2024, and the Falcons continued their span of high-ranking final performances spanning back to 2012, with the Girls’ team taking 3rd place and the Boys’ team winning the title. Poolesville’s small stature has them placed in the 3A/2A/1A division, with all state events occurring at the University of Maryland Eppley Center.  

A year after the Boys’ 2023 State Championship loss that put an end to their ten-year streak of taking home the State Title, they bounced back with a 1st place 325-point performance; finishing 77.5 points ahead of runner-up Damascus and 97 points above third-place La Plata.

“It felt so rewarding and like all of our hard work paid off in the end,” Senior Liam Sheeran said. “I couldn’t be more happy with how my Poolesville career ended.”

Sheeran competed alongside Senior Daniel Zamaray, Sophomore Ethan Lee, and Junior Jaden Hou in the 4×400-meter freestyle relay, where in the last event of the night they took home an individual State Title with a first-place finish among all schools.

While the Girls came up just short in their competition, their performance of 231 points landed them a 3rd place finish, only trailing Damascus’ 257 and Northern’s 307.  After a six year State Champion streak that lasted through the 2021 season they haven’t been able to achieve their former #1 status, but their three straight State Finalist finishes have maintained their legacy of success.

“Coming together as a team and always supporting each other definitely uplifted everyone’s mood and got everyone into the right mindset to compete how they did,” Senior Sammy Ye said.

For Swim and Dive Coach Jonathan Leong, the team’s success was exciting but not a new experience.

“This year we did really well,” Leong said.  “We started peaking at the right time…we all continued to get better and better and better, and in figuring out what individual and team combinations worked, we got a lot better as time went on.”

Leong’s tenure as Swim and Dive coach has lasted for 19 years to this point and he’s coached the teams to a total of 18 State Championships, 11 of which were won by the boys and seven by the girls.

In the diving portion of the event, Junior diver Gabe Hermann’s season finished with an 8th place finish at the State Championships with a total score of 292.05 in the Boys 1 Meter. 

“I felt like all the hard work I put in both on and off the board paid off, and I just took it one dive at a time,” Hermann said.

Hermann finished 8th overall and set a new school record with his performance just over two weeks earlier in a meet called the Metros, scoring 374.45 in 11 total dives in the Boys 1 Meter.

The Metros lasted from Feb 7th through the 10th, and in the swim competitions all Boys’ relays made the finals, and two Girls’ relays did the same.

The following week Poolesville took their success to the Regional Finals, with the Boys’ Team cruising to a first-place finish, the Girls’ Team placing second, and Hermann coming out on top.

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Ian Harper
Ian Harper, Staff Writer
Ian Harper is a junior in Global. His favorite song is “Roller Coaster” by Bon Jovi and one fun fact about him is that he has interviewed over 50 College Football players in the past year.

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