Rye Cove’s Goins breaks records at Region 2D Swim and Dive Championships

Kevin Mays • Feb 7, 2019 at 12:34 AM

BRISTOL — R.J. Goins is a one-man team.

The Rye Cove junior is the only swimmer on the Scott County school’s team.

Wednesday, at the Region 2D Swim and Dive Championships at Virginia High, Goins took home gold medals in both the 200-yard intermediate and 500 freestyle, setting new regional records by breaking the marks he set in both events at last year’s regional championships.

Goins won the 200 IM with a time of 2:09.96, breaking the previous regional record of 2:17.55.

In the 500 freestyle, Goins recorded a personal best time of 5:13.76.

“I dropped about 10 seconds off my time in the 500,” he said.

Goins’ time was good enough to set another regional record, beating the previous record of 5:26.05 that he set last year.


With the two wins, Goins gained 18 points, the most he could get.

The point total was good enough to place Rye Cove in fifth place in the regional team point standings, above four other teams.

Goins will return to the VHSL Class 2 state championships in Richmond on Feb. 16.

Last year he finished fifth in the 500 and seventh in the 200.

“I just want to keep dropping time and try to place in the top eight and get back on the podium,” said Goins.


Host Virginia high took the boys’ team title with 133 points, while Chilhowie finished a distant second with 79 points.

Marion (74 points) and Patrick Henry (72) followed.

Rye Cove (18), Wise Central (17), Union (16), Graham (13) and Tazewell (12) rounded out the field.

In the girls’ team standings, Marion took the regional championship with 125 points, edging Virginia High by one point.

Tazewell (61), Graham (60), Patrick Henry (41) Union (40), Chilhowie (23), Wise Central (12) and Gate City (12) rounded out the fields.


Union’s Ashley Cusano accounted for plenty of her team’s points.

She took wins in the 200 IM with a regional record time of 2:09.44 and set the new regional record in the 100 backstroke with a time of :58.02, breaking the previous mark of 1:06.16.

The junior state champion advances to the VHSL state championships, where she will compete in the 100 backstroke and the 100 fly, which she had qualified for prior to the regional meet.

She will also compete as part of the Union 200 medley relay team for the first time at the state championships.

The Union squad comprised of Cusano, Rylie Spears, Alivia Davidson and Meagan Blagg earned its first relay team trip to the state meet with a fourth-place finish behind Marion, Virginia High and Tazewell.

“I’m really excited about that,” Cusano said of advancing to the state as part of the relay team. “We’ve worked really hard all season long, and it’s really exciting.”


Other event winners in boys’ competition include Patrick Henry’s Alex Wright in the 200 free and 100 fly, Virginia High’s Cooper Gobble in the Men’s 50 free, Union’s Ty Bloomer in the 100 free, Virginia High’s Aaron Von Nostrand in the 100 backstroke and Graham’s Connor Douthat in the 100 breaststroke.

In the girls’ competition, individual winners included Virginia High’s Ridley Little in the 200 freestyle and 100 freestyle, Virginia High’s Amelia Austin in the 50 freestyle, Marion’s Anna Graham in the 100 fly, Marion’s Bre Coley in the 500 free and Graham’s Katie Benson in the 100 breaststroke.


Boys’ relay team winners included Virginia High’s John David Moser, Gobble, Van Nostrand and Spencer Bramlette in the 200 medley and the 200 freestyle and Chilhowie’s Nathan Gentry, Andy Gibson, Xander Somervell and Jackson Powers in the 400 freestyle.

In girls’ relay action, winners included Marion’s Coley, Graham, Emily Pollard and Kennedy Williams in the 200 medley and 400 freestyle and Virginia High’s Austin, Hannah Russell, Harley Holmes and Chloe Bastone in the 200 freestyle.

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