Region Two girls swimming | North Oldham's Oglesby matches Meagher's record; Sacred Heart wins title

Match a 32-year-old record, and you’re likely to be the talk of the swim meet.

Match a 32-year-old record held by Mary T. Meagher, and people might be talking about you for years to come.

Such is the scenario facing North Oldham High School sophomore Grace Oglesby, who on Saturday put her name beside an all-time great.

Oglesby won the 100-yard butterfly at the Region Two Swimming and Diving Championships held at the University of Louisville’s Ralph Wright Natatorium. Her time of 54.66 seconds matched the regional record set by Meagher in 1982 while swimming for Sacred Heart.

Two years later Meagher won three gold medals at the 1984 Summer Olympics.

With a personal-best 54.38 seconds in the event, Oglesby’s accomplishment wasn’t a total surprise. But after actually doing it?

“I was just in total shock,” she said. “I couldn’t believe I actually tied the record. I didn’t think I was going to go the exact same time.”

Oglesby helped North Oldham finish third in the team standings with 249 points. Sacred Heart, the 2013 state champion, won 10 of 12 events and blitzed the field with 654 points. Christian Academy was runner-up with 255.

The top two finishers in each event automatically qualified for the State Championships, which are Feb. 27-March 1 at U of L. Others may qualify based on their times compared to the rest of the state.

Oglesby qualified for State in two events after finishing second in the 50 freestyle. But it was Oglesby’s performance in the 100 butterfly that highlighted the meet.

Oglesby swam for North Oldham as a seventh- and eighth-grader but not as a freshman as she focused more on her club team, Cardinal Aquatics. But with the encouragement of her sister, Elizabeth — a junior on the swim team — Oglesby rejoined the North Oldham program.

“It’s challenging for them to be on both teams, but I think when they’re not they miss it,” North Oldham coach Randy Scherer said. “You just get a level of recognition in your school that you don’t get when you swim club.”

Oglesby said she’s looking forward to chasing the record at the State Championships in two weeks. Notre Dame’s Ellen Williamson set the mark of 54.17 seconds in 2011, and Oglesby sees an opportunity to improve on her time from Saturday.

“I do feel like I could have gone faster because my turns weren’t as good,” she said. “I glided into the wall. That’s really the only thing that hurt me.”

She’s even made a fan out of Sacred Heart coach Jim Luebbe.

“She has one of the best underwater kicks I’ve seen out of a girl from the state of Kentucky,” Luebbe said. “She’s progressively gotten better and better.”

Luebbe’s Valkyries are heavy favorites to win a second straight state title this year and showed why Saturday.

Sacred Heart broke regional records in the 200 freestyle relay (1:34.84) and 400 freestyle relay (3:27.81). Sophomores Asia Seidt and Brooke Bauer were members of both of those teams and also won two individual events, Seidt taking the 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke and Bauer winning the 50 and 100 frees.

Seidt was named Most Outstanding Swimmer of the meet.

“It’s a special group,” Luebbe said. “They’re very talented, and I think they’re just starting to crank it up a little bit.”

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