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FCHSSnD: Franklin takes 4th, its place among the state's premier programs

February 10, 2018

History teaches high school sports fans one thing: Swimming and Diving doesn’t offer much variety in Indiana at the top. The same teams, the supposed “Blue Blood” programs, have owned the top spots over the last decade: Carmel, Chesterton, Hamilton Southeastern, Fishers. Franklin ladies have done little to erase history but have done more than enough to help write a new chapter.

Franklin placed 4th in the team standings and scored 163 points on Saturday to earn their place as one of the premier programs in the state. It’s been quite the ascension over the past few years, where their efforts to join the state’s elite fell a bit short.

• 2018: 4th place finish at IHSAA State Championships, 163 pts.
• 2017: 12th place finish at IHSAA State Championships, 83 pts.
• 2016: 14th place finish at IHSAA State Championships, 58 pts.
• 2015: (DNP) Did not place at IHSAA State Championships, 0pts.

Franklin scored in every swimming event, with 7 different athletes doing their part in scoring points for the 4th placing girls team. Led by double-finalist Carla Gildersleeve, who placed 2nd and 4th in the 100 Butterfly and 200 Freestyle respectively, the Cubs also had two more athletes join the Franklin “Wall of Fame.” Two freshman, Kabria Chapman and Gracey Payne, made their way into Franklin Swimming & Diving history with their podium finishes in their respective events.

The largest sum of points, however, came from all three relays placing top-8. A team of Jessie Fraley, Kabria Chapman, Ali Terrell, and Gracey Payne finished as state runner-up to Carmel in the 200 Medley Relay to kick off the meet. Carla Gildersleeve, Ella Pheifer, Ali Terrell, and Gracey Payne placed 4th overall with a new school record in the 200 Freestyle Relay. In the last race of the day, it was Carla Gildersleeve, Ella Pheifer, Jessie Fraley, and Sarah Hoffman, racing to an 8th place finish to wrap up the state finals and the season.

On the season, Franklin broke 9 of the schools 11 swimming records, while also making the first appearance in the top 5 in school history. Franklin’s senior class was instrumental in changing the course of a program who hadn’t one a sectional title in 27 years, to a program that looks poised to compete with the state’s elite for years to come.

State Placers and best times from IHSAA State include:
• 200 Medley Relay – 1:43.67* – 2nd Place – Jessie Fraley, Kabria Chapman, Ali Terrell, and Gracey Payne
• 200 Freestyle – Carla Gildersleeve – 4th Place, 1:49.15*, Sarah Hoffman – 16th place, 1:52.56
• 200 IM – Ali Terrell – 9th place, 2:03.97*
• 50 Free – Ella Pheifer – 12th place, 23.72
• 100 Butterfly – Carla Gildersleeve – 2nd, 53.75*
• 100 Freestyle – Gracey Payne – 7th, 51.30*, Ella Pheifer – 16th 52.10
• 500 Freestyle – Sarah Hoffman – 15th, 5:00.16
• 200 Freestyle Relay – 1:34.74*, 4th – Gildersleeve, Pheifer, Terrell, Gracey Payne
• 100 Backstroke – Jessie Fraley – 16th, 57.53 
• 100 Breaststroke – Kabria Chapman – 7th 1:04.16, Ali Terrell – 14th 1:05.19
• 400 Freestyle Relay – 3:29.15* – Gildersleeve, Pheifer, Fraley, Hoffman

Daily Journal State Articles:
Determined Grizzly Cubs evolving into premier program -
Franklin breaks through with fourth-place finish –

*IHSAA Results: *

Team Standings: