This past Saturday was a big day for the Catoosa Great White Sharks swim team, who captured the 2019 Georgia Recreation and Parks Association (GRPA) District 5 championship in Calhoun.

Catoosa finished the meet with 951 points to best Calhoun (892), Pickens (776) and Gilmer (321) for the title. The Sharks ended the meet with 100 top-three finishes and set several new meet records.

Among those setting new district meet records were Julia Striker in the girls' 13-14 100-yard freestyle (59.07 seconds), Emma Pulliam in the girls' 13-14 50 freestyle (26.05) and girls' 13-14 50 backstroke (30.17) and Reece Gallagher in the boys' 15-18 50 breaststroke (27.77), the boys' 15-18 50 backstroke (25.03) and the boys' 15-18 100 individual medley (53.91).

The team of Lisa Afonshina, Alex Grayson, Will Riddell and Jayden Jones set a new record in the mixed 12-and-under 200 medley. The team of Issac Berry, Joel Motter, Anna Grace Parker and Keeley Mountjoy set a new record in the mixed 10-and-under 100 freestyle relay, while Afonshina, Jones, Riddell and Tyler Braly set a new mark in the mixed 12-and-under 200 freestyle relay.

Times for the mixed races were not available as of press time.

Catoosa swimmers will now head to the GRPA Class B state meet in Tifton on July 12-13. Catoosa will also be the host team for the GRPA Class C state meet in Fort Oglethorpe on July 20.

Scott Herpst is sports editor for the Walker County Messenger in LaFayette, Ga., and Catoosa County News in Ringgold, Ga.