Woodbridge swimmer leads Jefferson to state title

MANASSAS — Katie Doggett didn’t imagine that Friday and Saturday’s Virginia State Swim & Dive Championships would go so perfectly.

After second-place finishes as a freshman, sophomore and junior, the Woodbridge resident and Thomas Jefferson senior capped her high school swimming career in style, swimming a state-record 56.79 in the 100-yard backstroke. The victory helped cap a sweep of the boys and girls state titles for the Colonials and left Doggett gushing at the medal stand.

“A state title has always been something I dreamed of,” she said. “I think finally getting it in my senior year makes the whole experience of finishing second all three times worthwhile.”

Thomas Jefferson’s girls ran away with the team title, piling up 259 points, 108 more than second-place South Lakes. The Colonial boys needed their fourth-place finish in the final event, the 400 freestyle relay, to hold off Menchville 187-185.

Stonewall Jackson’s Ashley Razo notched a second-place and a third-place finish to help the Raiders to a team finish of seventh, two places higher than last season. The Raiders had relays place sixth and ninth, Kelly Urso added a fifth and a10th and Kerry Urso had an 11th.

Razo’s third-place 2:08.10 in the 200 individual medley was an All-American consideration time, but it was her 100 butterfly that was most impressive. While the Freedom Center announcer detailed the duel between eventual winner Gigi DeToll of Culpeper and Westfield’s Laura Ullrich, Razo surged past Ullrich for second, beating her at the wall.

“It was definitely really exciting,” said the Raider senior. “I was going in wanting to get third, so getting second was awesome.”

Gar-Field’s Brett MacLennan earned two second-place medals, for his performances in the 500 freestyle and the 200 individual medley.

Chris Meleski of South Lakes dueled MacLennan for the first 250 yards of the 500 freestyle, before pulling away to win in a state-record time of 4:36.40.

“My goal was just to stay with him as long as I could,” said MacLennan, who has battled Meleski in year-round swimming.

MacLennan and Razo agreed that the competition around the state improved quite a bit over the past year.

“[Doing well] was really exciting because the meet definitely got a lot faster,” Razo said.

Other top local finishers included Casey Quimby of Woodbridge, whose fifth-place 5:08.89 in the 500 freestyle was short of a personal best.

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