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Riptides win senior state Div. III title

CONYERS - The Rockdale Riptides swim team recently competed at the USA Senior State Swim Championships at Georgia Tech.

And the results were outstanding.

In fact, the Riptides brought home some hardware, taking first place in Division III.

It was the first senior championship win for the Riptides.

Individually, the Riptides received two strong performances from Drew Ellwanger and Nathaniel Eisenman.

Ellwanger won the B finals in the 100-yard breaststroke, placing 11th overall with a time of 1 minute, .45 seconds. Eisenman placed eighth in the A finals of the 50 freestyle with a time of 21.65 seconds.

The Riptides also performed well in the men's and women's relays.

The three men's relays placed in the top 16 with the 200 free relay placing 11th with a time of 1:35.26. The 200 freestyle relay team was composed of Dylan Johnson, Ellwanger, Matt Tibbetts and Eisenman.

The 200 and 400 medley relays were composed of Nick Stanley, Ellwanger, Matt Tibbetts and Eisenman. The men's 200 medley relay took 13th with a time of 1:44.23. The 400 medley relay took 15th with a time of 3:50.17.

The swimmers for the women's relays included Miranda Wright, Amanda Tibbetts, Melanie Wright and Emily Eisenman. The 200 free relay finished 24th and the 200 medley relay finished 23rd.

"The Riptide senior swimmers are stepping up to the blocks and not only competing with, but winning against the best swimming competition in the state," Riptides assistant coach Gregg Ellwanger said.

Riptides secretary Lisa Tibbetts was also impressed with the team's performance.

"We all are so proud of our swimmers," she said. "This is a very high-caliber meet with some Olympic swimmers such as Amanda Weir and other Olympic qualifying swimmers.

"Our kids were not intimidated and were able to show them how strong Rockdale can be. We certainly do not have the amount of practice time that some of the other teams have, and we still go out strong. We have some incredible coaching and some very talented dedicated swimmers. I couldn't be prouder."

Brandon Evans can be reached at brandon.evans@rockdalecitizen.com.