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Caveness wins state title

Laney’s Christian Caveness (seen here in a recent conference meet) won the boys 100-yard butterfly at the 4A state championships Thursday in Cary. (Photo by Jeff Janowski)

Make it two straight state champion swimmers for the Laney boys swimming team.

Senior Christian Caveness won the boys 100-yard butterfly at the 4A state championship meet in Cary on Thursday.

Caveness finished in 50.02 seconds and won the event by more than eight-tenths of a second.

Caveness' win follows a state title last year by teammate Travis Johns in the boys 200 IM. Johns wasn't able to repeat, but did finish fourth in the 200 IM and third in the 100 backstroke for Laney. Caveness took home seventh in the boys 50 freestyle as well to give the Buccaneer boys four top-seven finishes as a team.

Johns and Caveness also swam in two of Laney's boys relays, finishing 15th in the 200 medley relay and 16th in the 200 freestyle relay. Those efforts were enough to put Laney in 13th place out of 43 teams overall, despite bringing only four swimmers.

On the girls side, Hoggard took home three top-five finishes, led by junior Caroline Estep. Estep finished second in the girls 100 freestyle, fifth in the girls 50 freestyle and anchored the girls 200 freestyle to a fifth-place finish.

"It was great to see all of her hard work pay off," Hoggard coach Tammy Pruden said. "She deserves this accomplishment and she's worked hard for it. She deserved her moment on the podium."

The Hoggard girls 200 medley relay also finished sixth overall, the second straight year that two Hoggard relays finished in the top five at the state championship meet. Pruden said that high finish was not by accident.

"These girls definitely take pride in coming together and doing their very best for this team," Pruden said. "And they take the relay as an example of what it is: your individual effort contributes to the team. It brings them together."

Hoggard's Zach Hannum also took ninth in the boys 100 freestyle while Jimbo Short placed 16th in the 600 freestyle. Joseph High finished 16th in the boys 200 freestyle. Hellen Duffy of New Hanover finished 15th in the girls 100 breaststroke.