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Girls swimming: Locke goes out in style for Carmel, which wins 27th straight title

12:00 AM, Feb. 09, 2013 EST

Carmel senior Lacey Locke couldn't ask for much more out of a high school swimming career, culminating at Saturday's IHSAA girls state finals at the Natatorium at IUPUI.

Locke helped the Greyhounds win their 27th consecutive state championship, won the Mental Attitude Award and was part of two winning relay teams.

She swam the anchor leg of the 400 freestyle relay team that set a new state meet record in 3:23.37, joined by Veronica Burchill, Claire Adams and Hanna House.

Carmel's 200 medley relay team of Locke, Ariana Bullard, Haley Harris and Burchill won in a state-meet record time of 1:41.17. It broke the old record of 1:41.42 set by the Greyhounds at the 2011 meet, which included Locke and Bullard as sophomores.

With the win, Locke became one of four athletes to participate on four winning medley relay teams.

Also, Locke won her 12th state title -- as an individual and part of a relay team.

"I'm just so honored to have been a part of a program like this," Locke said. "I'm glad this chapter of my life could end like this with a championship."

Carmel won the team championship with 397 points, while Penn was second with 189. Zionsville was third with 178 and Hamilton Southeastern took fourth with 127

By winning its 27th consecutive championship, Carmel tied the nation's second-longest streak for a high school sports program and moved within two titles of tying first place.

Pickford (Mich.) won 27 consecutive boys track and field state titles from 1952 to 1978; the longest streak belongs to the boys swimming program of Punahou High in Honolulu, Hawaii, which won 29 titles from 1958 to 1986.

Carmel's streak is the longest current streak.

"I'm just so happy for the seniors to be able to go out on top," Carmel coach Chris Plumb said. "Trying to get everybody swimming on Saturday isn't always an easy thing to do."

Carmel just made it look that way.

Adams, a Greyhounds freshman, won four events, setting a state meet record in the 100 backstroke (53.40 seconds). She also won the 200 freestyle in 1:48.19; while participating on the 200- and 400-freestyle relays.

"She was just tremendous, and I'm happy I get to coach her for three more years," Plumb said.

Ritter sophomore Sarah Bacon won the diving event with a score of 506.95. Noblesville junior Meme Sharp was second (451.30 points) and Lawrence North's Morgan Meixner third (444.85).

"The biggest thing was trying to stay warm between dives, but if you knew that going in you would be good," Bacon said.

Zionsville junior Alex Cleveland won the 50 freestyle in 22.95 seconds, followed by North Central's Rachel Hayden in 23.20 seconds.

Bullard also won the 100 fly in 53.90 seconds.



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