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State swimming preview

When: Thursday (Class 3A), Friday (Class A) and Saturday (Class 2A). Diving finals start at 2 p.m., swimming finals at 5:30.

Where: Central Florida YMCA Aquatic Center, 8422 International Drive, Orlando

Class 3A

Girls to watch: Countryside's Melanie Margalis is the defending state champion in the 200 IM and could add another state title in the 100 back. St. Petersburg's Tracy Rorer is entered in the same events as Margalis and could push her in both. Palm Harbor University's Katie Coleman has dominated the 100 fly all season and owns the top seed. Countryside's Rachel Burns ranks in the top four in the 100 and 200 free.

Boys to watch: Palm Harbor University could win the county's first team title since Seminole's girls in 1985. The Hurricanes have used their depth to roll through meets, winning conference, district and region titles. Chris Mertens, Tyler Reed and Wes Stearns could each place high in individual events. Countryside's relay teams also should place in the top two.

Class 2A

Girls to watch: Northeast's Megan Romano can add to her gold-medal collection by winning the 200 free and 100 back. She wants to close out her career by breaking state, and possibly national, records in each of her events. Seminole's Kaitlin Frehling will be defending her titles in the 50 and 100 free. Clearwater's Megan Rossi is a contender in the 500 free.

Boys to watch: Seminole won the region team title last week and could have many of its swimmers do well. Northeast's P.J. Bennett is going after his second straight state title in diving.

Class A

Girls to watch: St. Petersburg Catholic's Kelsey Krauss has shown steady improvement in her signature races and is poised to win her first state titles in the 50 free and 100 fly. Another to watch is Northside Christian's Jaki St. Louis in the 100 breast. Shorecrest's Hannah Stein could place among the top three in diving.

Boys to watch: Clearwater Central Catholic's Cam Martin has had the misfortune of swimming against Jesuit's Tommy Wyher and Calvary Christian's Jose Crescimbeni the past two years. Both have since graduated, giving Martin a clear shot at titles in the 100 fly and 100 back. Shorecrest's Jake Stein could place in diving.

Bob Putnam, Times staff writer

State swimming preview 11/10/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 11, 2008 8:53pm]
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