Several Southern Utah high school swimmers took home titles after competing in the 3A state championships on Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015.
PROVO – Everyone may have been looking up as Park City’s swimmers blitzed through the field at the 3A state swimming championship, but the Cedar Redmen were able to function just fine themselves along with other individual standouts from Region 9.
Senior Colby Clark closed his high-school career with a victory in the 500-yard freestyle, and both Cedar teams finished second to the Miners as the 3A meet wrapped up Saturday at the BYU pool. Clark shook off a runner-up showing in the 200 free Friday and touched the wall first in 4 minutes, 54.57 seconds, more than five full seconds ahead of Park City’s Cole Peterson.
“I used the 200 loss as incentive,” Clark said. “It made me more aggressive. I was sick of seeing Park City win everything.”
Clark finished first, but the Miners had the next four spots in the finishing order on the final podium, and Juan Diego’s Hunter McKenzie finished sixth.
The Redmen closed with a second-place finish in the 400 free relay and finished the meet with 257 team points, 17 ahead of the Soaring Eagle. Dixie came home in fourth and Desert Hills was fifth.
Among the other outstanding individual performances, Canyon View’s Nathan Wallace was the only two-event winner of the 3A state meet as he won the 100 free with a time of 48.74 seconds, nearly a full second in front of Ben Lomond’s Adam Heiner. Wallace’s teammate, Alan Anderson, finished third in 50.30.
“I was looking forward to this one,” Wallace said. “To beat a good field like this is awesome.”
Wallace is in his junior year, but has drawn interest from Division I schools including BYU, Indiana and Notre Dame.
On the girls side, the Lady Reds finished with 284 points, solidly in second place overall behind Park City, and Desert Hills was third. The Thunder closed the meet with a second-place finish in the 400 free relay.
“We were hoping for, but not necessarily expecting that outcome,” Desert Hills team coach Dani Caldwell said. “They swam out-of-their-minds fast. All of them stepped up and did what they needed to do. The relay girls dropped a second apiece.”
The rest of the Region 9 schools had their own shining moments at the state meet. Among them:
•Desert Hills freshman Bryant Karratti finished second in the 100 breaststroke in 1:03.62, less than four-tenths of a second behind Park City’s Vincent Hess.
•Pine View’s Allie Watt was fifth in the girls 100 backstroke in 1:02.20, just ahead of Dixie’s Kayla Greer.
•Dixie’s Alina Barnes was sixth in the 500 free (5:39.99), 11 seconds ahead of her seed time.
•Dixie’s Nathan Hook was three-tenths of a second behind Anderson and finished fourth in the 100 free (50.64).
•Cedar sophomore Kristen Gross edged out Desert Hills’ Megan Draney for second in the 100 free with 54.27. Draney was third in 54.64.
Also in the girls final team standings, Dixie finished fifth and Snow Canyon was sixth.
Follow Tom Zulewski on Twitter, @Tomzsports.