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Cadence Vincent (File photo by Brian Bergstrom / My Buckhannon)

B-U claims 11 conference titles, finishes second at Big 10 Swim Championships on Saturday

BRIDGEPORT — The Buckhannon-Upshur High School girls and boys swim teams collected 11 gold medals, two conference records and a second-place overall finish at the Big 10 Championships in Bridgeport on Saturday.

The host Indians won the combined team event, with B-U finishing second, just ahead of Elkins and Fairmont Senior.

“We had several personal best swims today,” B-U head coach Jennifer Bennett said Saturday night. “The kids have really been working hard in practice. It was nice to see that hard work pay off today.”

B-U’s Cadence Vincent set two Big 10 records. In just the third event of the day, she obliterated the record in the 200-yard freestyle, with her time of 1:52.23 more than seven seconds faster than the previous mark of 1:59.41, set in 2017 by Adrianna Abruzzino. She then set a new standard in the 100-yard butterfly, with her time of 56.47 topping Maggie Miller’s 2015 mark of 58.01.

Vincent, a senior, is set to swim at the University of Alabama next year.

Alayna Whitehair also collected a pair of conference titles for the B-U girls, winning the 200-yard IM in 2:20.67 and the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:11.36. Two Lady Buccaneer relays — the 200-yard medley and 200-yard freestyle, each featuring the quartet of Rylee Yardley, Whitehair, Vincent and Lillian Fetty — also swam to first-place finishes.

Rounding out the scoring for the girls were Chole Blonn and Cate O’Neill in the 100-yard free (third and fifth), Yardley in the 100-yard back (eighth), Sammie Shay in the 200-yard IM (ninth), and Fetty in the 500-yard free (10th).

Overall, the Lady Bucs placed fourth, behind Fairmont Senior, Bridgeport and Elkins.

For the B-U boys, Preston Bennett — who’s committed to swim at WVU next year — led the way by claiming Big 10 titles in the 200-yard freestyle (1:49.35) and 500-yard free (5:07.81). Teammate Reis Leonard also earned an individual gold medal in the 100-yeard breaststroke (1:03.88).

The quartet of Bennett, Leonard, Carter Zuliani and Owen Caynor swam to a Big 10 title in thrilling fashion in the 200-yard medley relay (1:47.81), where they edged RCB by just one second. The same group also claimed gold in the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:33.93).

In the other individual events, Zuliani and Caynor finished second and sixth, respectively, in the 50-yard freestyle; Zuliani nabbed eighth in the 100-yard fly; Leonard placed fourth in the 100-yard free; and Caynor also finished fourth in the 100-yard breaststroke.

The Buccaneers finished third overall, behind RCB and Bridgeport.

Click here to see the full results from Saturday’s meet.

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