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Swimming: Lambert wins fourth straight county titles
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South Forsyth’s Averi Lewis competes during the Forsyth County championships. - photo by Jared Putnam

Lambert wasn’t officially inaugurated for a second term on Saturday, but all signs indicated that the Longhorns could remain in power for another four years.

Lambert’s girls and boys swimmers continued their dominance over their local rivals, combining for 1,354 points as they locked up their fourth consecutive Forsyth County championships at the Cumming Aquatic Center.

"We worked hard and our hard work paid off," said Lady Longhorns senior Kaitlin Sensenbrenner, who has been swimming since fourth grade and was part of Lambert’s first freshman class when the school opened in 2009.

"We just wanted to do our best [again this season] and of course we wanted to win county again and continue that streak."

Lambert’s girls earned first place with 752 total points, 230 ahead of second place North Forsyth (522).

West Forsyth (505.5), South Forsyth (320), Forsyth Central (297.5) and Pinecrest (273) rounded out the field.

Lady Longhorns Katherine Aikens and Ashley Mallon tied for the team lead with 72 points and four gold medals apiece, while the team gave Victoria Michel its "most improved" award.

Lambert’s boys finished with 602 points behind seniors Tyler Webb (59.5 points) and Brad Richards (54). West (471) edged North (428) for second place, followed by Central (355), South (335) and Pinecrest (309).

"Basically, [swimming focuses] on more individual goals, but we are a strong team, we are a good team, and most of it is due to some really great leaders through our captains and our team spirit is unbeatable," Lambert first-year coach Kerry Langley said. "We’re more like a family than a team."

The addition of the inaugural county diving competition allowed West to deny Lambert a clean sweep, as Hannah King posted a leading score of 186.35 for the Lady Wolverines. Lambert’s Alyssa Dellaera finished second at 148.10 and Forsyth Central’s Rae Ganas took third with 134.20.

Each school paid tribute to its senior swimmers and divers during a break from the competition, and many athletes made the most of their creative freedom by donning hats, masks or necklaces before they stepped up to the platform and dove in for their honorary swim.

"It just feels good when you get recognized for your hard work," Sensenbrenner said. "It definitely motivates us even more to do our best and continue moviing up."