Tualatin boys win share of league crown
TIGARD — It's been awhile.
But, for the first time in more than 10 years, you can refer to the Tualatin High School boys swim team as "champion."
The Timberwolves clinched their first league dual meet title since 2007 by scoring a 109-61 win over rival Tigard in a Three Rivers League dual meet finale held last Thursday at the Tigard Swim Center.
"I'm really proud of how they swam all year," first-year Tualatin head coach Matt Unis said. "This is a very focused group."
With the win over the Tigers, the Tualatin boys finished the league dual meet season with a record of 6-0-1, putting the Wolves in a tie with Newberg for first place in the final standings. Tualatin and Newberg battled to a tie in a meet held Dec. 14 at the Tualatin Swim Center.
The league dual meet title is the first for a Tualatin boys team since the Wolves won the 2007 Pacific Conference crown in 2007.
"Being the league champion really means something," Unis said. "Being in a competitive league, with teams like Lake Oswego, Lakeridge and Newberg, this means a lot. The guys showed up at every meet, and swam their hearts out."
Senior Elliot Steward certainly showed up at last week's title-clinching meet, as he was a four-time winning in the contest at Tigard.
Steward sprinted to victory in the 50-yard freestyle event in a time of 23.37 seconds. He also had a winning mark of 50.05 in the 100 freestyle.
In the 200 medley relay, Steward teamed with senior Jared Mendez, junior Connor Florey and senior Allan Zhang to pick up a victory in 1:55.09. In the 400 freestyle relay, the Tualatin team of Florey, Mendez, junior Ryan Janetsky and Steward triumphed in a time of 3:30.43.
Mendez also was victorious in the 200 freestyle with a mark of 2:00.51. Florey picked up a win in the 500 freestyle in 4:58.41. Janetsky had a winning time of 1:09.44 in the 100 breaststroke.
In the 200 freestyle relay, the Tualatin team of Janetsky, senior Jordan Taboada, junior Myles Clark and Zhang triumphed with a mark of 1:36.36.
The Tualatin girls, in last week's meet, battled Tigard to an 85-85 tie. With the deadlock, the Timberwolves finished the league season at 4-2-2. Tigard finished its TRL slate at 2-5-1.
Sophomore Abbi Karsseboom was a four-time winner for the Wolves at last week's meet. Karsseboom triumphed in the 200 individual medley in a time of 2:16.03, edging senior teammate Sarah Martin, who was second at 2:18.93, and she had a winning mark of 5:24.27 in the 500 freestyle.
In the 200 freestyle relay, Karsseboom teamed with freshman Izzy Ehmig, sophomore Taylor Cockrell and sophomore Britney Muralt to win in 1:47.45. In the 400 freestyle relay, the team of Cockrell, Martin, Karsseboom and Muralt triumphed in 3:54.56.
Also for the Tualatin girls, Cockrell had a winning time of 2:08.72 in the 200 freestyle, Martin triumphed in the 100 breaststroke in 1:10.24 and the 200 medley relay team of Ehmig, Martin, sophomore Abbie Carey and freshman Esther Ho picked up a victory in 2:00.36.
The Tualatin teams will next be in action at the Three Rivers League district meet, which will be held Friday and Saturday at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham.
Action at the district meet is set to start at 8:45 a.m. on Friday. Saturday's finals are slated to begin at 9 a.m. Each event winner at the district meet, as well as those swimmers, or relay teams, that reach state-qualifying standards, or earn wild-card bids, will advance to compete at the Class 6A state meet, which will be held Feb. 16-17 at Mt. Hood Community College.