scorecardresearch Skip to main content

Lincoln-Sudbury finally back on top after winning Division 1 girls’ swimming championship

Attleboro's Zuri Ferguson, who earned All-American status winning the 100-yard backstroke, celebrated after her victory in the 50-yard freestyle.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe

Lincoln-Sudbury had not finished in the top two at the MIAA Division 1 girls’ swimming championships in eight years. Since their last title in 2015, the Warriors have watched Dual County League foe Westford Academy win six straight times.

Team depth and a set of outstanding relays would change the Warriors’ fate.

“We have a lot of very fast swimmers, and we have three strong relays, and we don’t always have that,” said Lincoln-Sudbury coach Julie Nocka.

Thanks to those three relay teams, two of which won their races, the Warriors won a long-awaited girls’ state title Saturday night at MIT’s Zesiger Center, 274-212, over the Ghosts.


The Warriors started off finishing third in the opening event, the 200-yard medley relay, but took the lead after the second race, the 200-yard freestyle, where sophomore Joslin Halsey finished second behind Cardinal Spellman’s Abby Toepfer. Following that, McKenna Murray finished fourth in the 200-yard individual medley. Bridget Hogan added a fourth-place finish in the 100-yard freestyle and fifth in the 50-yard freestyle.

Those individual successes set up Lincoln-Sudbury for the meet’s ninth event, the 200-yard freestyle relay, where Hogan, Alison Graff, Tamara Papovsky, and Halsey earned the win in 1:41.68. With that victory, the Warriors established a large enough margin that their team title was well in hand.

Runner-up Westford Academy made a giant jump from their seventh-place finish at last weekend’s South sectional. Thanks to quality relays and a 100-yard breaststroke win by senior Cara Dominici, the Ghosts made a substantial improvement.

“We just came off seventh place at sectionals and fifth place at DCLs, and I think we were all a little disappointed,” said Dominici. “The team was really working towards this the whole week. We really wanted to place higher than we were seeded, and that’s what we did.”


In the 100-yard butterfly, Franklin’s Hope Xayaveth won and set a meet record in 54.43, a significant contribution to the Panthers’ third-place team finish.

Attleboro sophomore Zuri Ferguson turned in a stellar performance, winning two events. She defended her title in the 100-yard backstroke with a 54.36, earning automatic All-American status, and won the 50-yard freestyle with a 23.92.

“I’m happy with how I swam,” said Ferguson. “The girls are so great and this was so much fun.”

McKenna Murray secured key points for Lincoln-Sudbury with her fourth-place finish in the 200-yard individual medley at MIT.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe
Franklin's Hope Xayaveth was on her way to setting a meet record in the 100-yard butterfly at MIT . . . Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe
. . . and then Xayaveth celebrates her victory as runner-up Joslin Halsey of Lincoln-Sudbury watches on right.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe

MIAA Division 1 Championship

at MIT

 200 medley relay — 1. Franklin, 1:50.81; 2. Westford, 1:51.74; 3. Lincoln-Sudbury, 1:52.12; 4. Hingham, 1:53.74; 5. Newton South, 1:53.94.

 200 freestyle — 1. Abby Toepfer, Cardinal Spellman, 1:54.53; 2. Joslin Halsey, Lincoln-Sudbury, 1:54.54; 3. Meredith Yuhasz, Bishop Fenwick, 1:57.43.

 200 IM — 1. Clara Bodnar, Hingham, 2:07.6; 2. Jessie McNeil, Bridgewater-Raynham, 2:08.43; 3. Megan Kelly, Chicopee Comprehensive, 2:11.07.

 50 freestyle — 1. Zuri Ferguson, Attleboro, 0:23.92; 2. Lucy Chivers, Agawam, 0:24.35; 3. Julia Pelchat, Bishop Feehan, 0:24.5.

 Diving — 1. Rachael Silva, Durfee, 423.850 points; 2. Maisie O’Donnell, Concord-Carlisle, 421.350; 3. Eve Weatherhead, Hopkinton, 405.150.

 100 butterfly — 1. Hope Xayaveth, Franklin, 0:54.43; 2. Joslin Halsey, Lincoln-Sudbury, 0:57.33; 3. Clara Bodnar, Hingham, 0:58.72.

 100 freestyle — 1. Lucy Chivers, Agawam, 0:52.79; 2. Julia Pelchat, Bishop Feehan, 0:53.38; 3. Caitlyn Reitsma, Westborough, 0:54.54.

 500 freestyle — 1. Megan Kelly, Chicopee Comprehensive, 5:10.39; 2. Meredith Yuhasz, Bishop Fenwick, 5:11.82; 3. Abby Toepfer, Cardinal Spellman, 5:12.12.

 200 freestyle relay — 1. Lincoln-Sudbury, 1:41.68; 2. Concord-Carlisle, 1:42; 3. Bishop Feehan, 1:43.8; 4. Westford, 1:44.06; 5. Cambridge, 1:44.12.


 100 backstroke — 1. Zuri Ferguson, Attleboro, 0:54.36; 2. Hope Xayaveth, Franklin, 0:58.01; 3. Harikalal Birali, Franklin, 0:59.76.

 100 breaststroke — 1. Cara Dominici, Westford, 1:07.2; 2. Jessie McNeil, Bridgewater-Raynham, 1:07.66; 3. Maeve Hogan, Lincoln-Sudbury, 1:08.58.

 400 freestyle relay — 1. Lincoln-Sudbury, 3:39.67; 2. Franklin, 3:42.84; 3. Newton South, 3:46.05.

 Team results — 1. Lincoln-Sudbury, 274; 2. Westford, 212; 3. Franklin, 206.5; 4. Concord-Carlisle, 198.5; 5. Newton South, 196.

Kat Cornetta can be reached at