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Sharks win state swim championships

8/8/2014, 6 a.m.
Eight-year-old teammates Jayla Thompson and Zahir Harrison of the DeKalb-based HLHK Sharks swim club are state swimming champions.
Despite being one of the smallest teams, the DeKalb HLHK Sharks earned two first places.

Eight-year-old teammates Jayla Thompson and Zahir Harrison of the DeKalb-based HLHK Sharks swim club are state swimming champions.

Despite being one of the smallest teams represented at the Georgia Recreation and Parks Association annual state swimming championships in July, Healthy Lifestyles Healthy Kids Inc. produced two Georgia state champions. Jayla earned first place in the 8 and Under Girls 25-yard freestyle event, and Zahir earned first place in the 8 and Under Boys 25-yard breaststroke event.

Jayla also placed fourth in the 25-yard butterfly, and Zahir placed sixth in the 100-yard medley relay.

The nonprofit HLHK Sharks, coached by team founder Jabari King and friend Joel Harrison, had 14 swimmers qualify for the state meet. Of those, nine finished among the top eight youth in the state in their respective events.

Idris Muhammad placed second in the 10 and Under Boys 25 backstroke and seventh in the 100 freestyle relay.

Khalil Morris placed fifth in the 10 and Under Boys 25 freestyle and seventh in the 100 freestyle relay.

Nasir Harrison, Miles Gibson and Spectacular King placed sixth in the 8 and Under Boys 100 medley relay.

Ian Hagherty and Neko Wale placed seventh in the 10 and Under Boys 100 freestyle relay.

King and Harrison, who is Zahir’s father, are both DeKalb County natives and lifelong friends who attended Howard University on swim scholarships. In addition to competitive swimming, Healthy Lifestyles Healthy Kids Inc. offers basketball and soccer to promote physical, social and mental health in children and families.

The victories are a continuation in HLHK’s march to establish a footprint in the competitive world of Georgia swimming.

For more information, visit www.hlhk.org.