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PREP SWIMMING: Eastside pleased with second-place finish at the December Splash
Bethany Larson
Eastside's Bethany Larson helped pace the Eagles' swim team to a second place finish in Saturday's Eastside-hosted December Splash meet. -photo by Matthew Grimes

MADISON, Ga. — From all accounts, Saturday’s December Splash swim meet hosted by the Eastside Eagles swimming team at the Morgan County Aquatic Center was a complete success. 

The Eagles competed in 23 events with various other schools, including Newnan, Morgan County, Walnut Grove and George Walton Academy and finished second overall with 628 points, behind only Walnut Grove who posted an astounding 922.5 points to take home the meet title. 

The Eastside boys came in third with 226 points while the girls finished second with 402. 

It left Eastside assistant coach, Tom Hanson more than pleased with the results. 

“They did really great [Saturday],” Hanson said after the meet. “We had a lot of personal best times, and our relays kind of melded together. We had a little sickness that came through, and we had seven swimmers that were not able to be here today. I’m proud of everybody.” 

One person Hanson is particularly proud of is team captain Bethany Larson who he says has impressively stepped up as the team’s leader. 

“She leads this team as far as making sure everyone is where they are supposed to be and really coordinating events. I’ve seen her grow as a leader as much as a swimmer,” Hanson remarked. 

In Larson’s two individual events she finished second in the 200-yard freestyle and first in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 1:16. That’s one second off her personal goal for the season of 1:15. 

“I feel great,” Larson said after the meet. “I was so happy about dropping time in everything.” 

Eastside Swimming
Members of the Eastside swim team dive into action during Saturday's December Splash meet hosted by the Eagles. -photo by Matthew Grimes

Some other notable finishes from the Eagles today were as follows:

Eastside placed second in the Boys 200-Yard Medley Relay with a time of 2:05. Logan Putnam, Ian Kennedy, Austin O’Brien and Jajuan McKinnon competed in the event for the Eagles. 

The girls finished first in the same event with a 2:14 time. Competing for the Eagles were Corinne Hanson, Summer Evans, Larson and Alice Kennedy. The girls also finished third in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a 2:40 time. 

Emma Davenport, Ava Denny, Grace Frazier and Kyli Green competed in this event for Eastside.  

Ian Kennedy finished first in the boys 200-yard free style with a time of 2:32 time. Austin O’Brien finished third in the Boys 200-yard IM at 2:32. Corinne Hanson finished third in the girls 200-yard IM with a 2:59 time.  

Jajuan McKinnon placed third in the boys 50-yard freestyle, finishing in 26 seconds. Noah Larson finished third in the boys 100-yard backstroke with a 1:21 time. And Kennedy finished first in the girls 50-yard freestyle, completing the race in 27 seconds.  

Coach Hanson credits the team’s work ethic over the offseason to its early success this year. 

“We really began early doing dry land training,” he said. “We started pretty much in the beginning of school, staying after at Eastside and doing just regular core conditioning. It really helps a lot when you get in the pool like this because we are able to last until the end. “Its all about being able to last until you touch the wall. Our core conditioning is where we really began to excel.”  

The Eagles will compete again on Saturday at the Alcovy Invite held at Johnson Park Pool in Conyers.